Kalme was born in Riga, Latvia on November 15, 1939. At the conclusion of World War II, Kalme and what was left of his family fled Latvia, lived for years in a Displaced persons camp in Germany and finally arrived in Philadelphia in the United States in 1951.
Kalme won the U.S. Junior Chess Championship, held in Lincoln, Nebraska, in 1955 with a 9-1 score. He won the Pan-American Intercollegiate championship in 1957. In 1960, he played on the U.S. Team in the World Student Team Championship in Leningrad, USSR. The U.S. team won the World Championship, the only time the U.S. has ever won that event. Kalme won two gold medals, one for the team and the other for his individual result on board two. Kalme also represented the United States twice more in team play at this level: Helsinki 1961 and Cracow 1964. He played twice in the United States Chess Championship: 1958-1959 and 1960-1961.
- Ivars C. Kalme. Social Security Death Index.
- Saidy, Anthony (April 2003). "Charles Kalme 1939-2002". Chess Life. U.S. Chess Federation. p. 64.
- Bill Wall. "US Junior Chess". Retrieved August 9, 2016.
- USCF (2006), "2006 Yearbook" (PDF), Chess Life, April 2007, archived from the original (Retrieved 2016-08-09) on 2016-08-04