Grandmaster Susan Polgar

GM Susan Polgar

To me she is Zsuzsi (nickname for Zsuzsanna, her original name in Hungarian), the eldest of my loving sisters. She is a chess grandmaster and a true ambassador for chess. There are countless things she does to make our game even more popular, such as making chess a part of educational systems and giving the royal game the respect it deserves. Below, see some impressive facts taken from Susan's official website. For much more information, please visit her official website and blog for updates. Susan is also a great chess author as I personally like teaching from her books.


Grandmaster Susan Polgar, the first woman in history to break the gender barrier by qualifying for the 1986 "Men's" World Championship and earning the Grandmaster title in 1991. She became the #1 ranked woman player in the world at the age of 15 and remained in the top 3 for nearly 23 straight years. Susan went on to win ten Olympic medals (5 Gold, 4 Silver and 1 Bronze) and four Women’s World Championships.

Her most recent Olympic spotlight moment took place in October 2004, when she and the U.S. women’s national team brought home the first ever medal (silver) for the United States at the 36th Chess Olympiad. In that Olympic, she further distinguished herself by bringing home 2 additional gold medals (one for best overall performance and one for the most points scored in the entire Women's Olympiad). She also got another silver medal for racking up the second-best percentage on the top board.

Chess Career Highlights

  • #1 ranked woman chess player in the world at the age of 15 (Ranked in the top 3 in the world for nearly 23 straight years)
  • Currently ranked #1 in the United States
  • 3-time US Open Blitz Champion (2003, 2005, 2006)
  • 3-time winner of the Chess Oscar
  • Won the Budapest Championship for Girls under 11 at age of 4 with the perfect score of 10-0!
  • Award-winning and best-selling chess author in numerous languages
  • Winner of the prestigious Cramer Award for "Best Chess Column of the Year" (2003)
  • 3-time winner of the Chess Journalists of America Award for Best Magazine Column and Best Endgame Analysis
  • A pioneer in women’s chess, an ambassador for the game and a true role model to millions of young people worldwide
  • Founder of the Susan Polgar Foundation A nonprofit organization to promote chess, with all its educational, social and competitive benefits throughout the U.S., for young people of all ages, especially girls
  • Sponsor and organizer of the prestigious annual Susan Polgar National Invitational for Girls Championship, Susan Polgar World Open Chess Championship for Girls and Susan Polgar National Open Chess Championship for Girls

View clip of Susan giving commencement speech in front of 25,000 at Texas Tech!