The TI-Chips User Group
Established the Jim Peterson Achievement Awards

(Masthead from the TI-Chips User Group Newsletter)

The TI-Chips user group established the Jim Peterson Achievement Awards, conceived by Jim Krych, to honor the memory of Jim Peterson. Following is the preamble for the Jim Peterson Awards as penned by Jim Krych in January, 1996.

"The late Jim Peterson made an invaluable contribution to the Texas Instruments 99/4A home computer community. His selfless and tireless work in many areas of TI-99/4A related material made him recognized throughout the world-wide network of TI-99/4A users. As such, in an effort to further the spirit that his work had started, the following award system is enacted: The Jim Peterson Achievement Award. This will recognize TI-99/4A and Myarc 'Geneve' 9640 users and user groups, by the TI-99/4A community, for their outstanding achievements. The awards will be broken down into four areas. They are as follows: Software, Hardware, Community Service and Myarc 'Geneve' 9640."

Jim Krych contacted Jim Peterson's family to gain permission to make these awards in his honor. The Jim Peterson family granted their permission, and the TI-Chips voted unanimously in February, 1996 to sponsor the Jim Peterson Achievement Awards.

The first recipients of the Jim Peterson Achievement Awards selected through an international call for votes from the TI-99/4A community and presented at the TI-Chips' 1996 MUG conference, were:
Software: Will and Tony McGovern (Funnelweb)
Hardware: Bud Mills (Horizon RamDisk)
Community Service: Charles Good (MUG Conferences at Lima, Ohio)
Myarc 'Geneve' 9640: Both Tim Tesch and Beery Miller

The 'Lifetime Achievement' award was added in 2008, and it eventually replaced the Myarc 'Geneve' 9640 category. However, Myarc 'Geneve' 9640 users will still remain eligible along with TI-99/4A users for recognition in Software, Hardware, Community Service or Lifetime Achievement.

JPA Certificate
(Click on the picture to see full size.)

The Tl-Chips user group was very active in the community during the 1980s and 1990s. They donated TI-99/4A computers to the North Royalton branch Children's Library and provided both tutoring and repair services for the donated computers. In 1988, the Tl-Chips created posters and signs and participated, by running demonstrations on the TI-99/4A, for the North Royalton branch library's tenth anniversary celebration. And again, in 1998, for the Cuyahoga County Library's 75th anniversary and the North Royalton branch library's twentieth anniversary.

The Tl-Chips also elected to organize, conduct and participate in two exceptional events. They were the Tl-Chips' 1996 and 1999 Multi User Group (MUG) conferences and the 2000 - 2004 Northeast Ohio Classic Computer and Games (CCAG) shows.

In May of 1996, with the welcomed help and advice from Charles Good of the Lima user group, the Tl-Chips, with valuable assistance from the NorthCoast 99ers user group, organized and hosted a very successful MUG conference, in Brook Park, Ohio, with over one hundred domestic and international TI99ers attending and participating.

In June of 1999, the Tl-Chips organized and hosted their last MUG conference. This conference, like the 1996 MUG conference, was also a very well received and successful event for both the Tl-Chips and attending TI99ers from around the country.

The Tl-Chips attended and participated in the 2000, 2001, 2002 and 2004 Northeast Ohio CCAG shows. This participation gave the Tl-Chips opportunity to meet classic computer and game enthusiasts and demonstrate the TI-99/4A home computer at these very well attended and popular shows.

In November of 1983, a group of western and southwestern Cleveland, Ohio TI-99/4A users met in the North Royalton branch of the Cuyahoga County Library. They were known as the North Royalton User Group. Bernard Gallagher was selected to lead the group as their first President. In early 1984, a contest was held, within the user group, to establish a formal name for the group. The winning entry and new name for the user group, submitted by Joe Lorenz and published in the July issue of The Cleveland Area TI-99/4A Users Groups newsletter, was 'Tl-Chips'.

The Tl-Chips remained a functioning TI-99/4A user group for more than twenty years. After one last get together in April of 2007, the remaining user group membership agreed, in July of that year, to formally disband the user group by donating its entire financial account to the Salvation Army in memory of their long time Treasurer, Linwood (Lin) Shaw.

The presidents and co-presidents who led the TI-Chips were: Bernard Gallagher (1983 – 1985), Rich Polivka (1986), Terry Vacha (1987), Glenn Bernasek (1988 and 1990 – 1994), Matt Andel (1989 — 1991), Dinny Stockdale (1992), Virgil Thomason (1993 – 1994), Fred Ialacci (1995 – 1999), Jim Krych (1996 – 1998) and Nina Hoffman (2000 – 2007).

Of all that the Tl-Chips user group accomplished during their nearly twenty four years of existence, the most rewarding, to the Tl-Chips membership and to the TI99 community, was their unanimous decision in 1996 to host, finance, administrate and promote the prestigious Jim Peterson Achievement Awards. These awards, thanks to the action of the Tl-Chips, have withstood the test of time and as long as there is participation by the TI99 community; the Jim Peterson Achievement Awards will continue to be presented to deserving TI99ers world-wide.

Biography prepared by Glenn Bernasek

Inducted into the TI99ers Hall of Fame on September 15, 2013.