The Masters Hall of Fame
Celebrating the past and Embracing the Future
Presented by Martialforce.com
The Masters Hall of Fame is an organization committed to acknowledging excellence in the martial arts. We all have the incredible good fortune of learning, training and teaching in possibly the most exciting time in our world’s history. Thanks to the internet, television, ease of traveling long distances, nutritional advances and overall multi-media communications capabilities, students of the martial way today have a multiplicity of avenues for potential growth that just didn’t exist in centuries past.
We are fortunate to still have at our disposal many of the great pioneering artists who played enormous roles in moving the martial arts to where it’s is today. But sadly those numbers of pioneering Grand Masters are starting to dwindle due to time and age. The Masters Hall of Fame is an organization dedicated to acknowledging the incredible contributions that the past and current masters have given, while at the same time keeping its eye firmly fixed upon the future of where the martial way is going. As the saying goes, “How do you know where you are going if you do not know where you have been?” Balancing the importance of our past pioneers and achievements with the newly emerging masters and future pioneers and achievers is a role of great importance and responsibility; a role that the Masters Hall of Fame is deeply committed and dedicated to.
In the world today people are bombarded with television, movies and sports events that have made the martial arts a common commodity, one thing blending into another. Where as shortly as 15 years ago, if you would have asked a person what the role of the arts were in a persons life, many would have spoken about self defense, spiritual connectivity, self-esteem, making a difference in people’s lives and survival and protection of one and their family. Today that seems to be changing a bit. Talk too many today and you will hear people talking about varied sport competitions, making money in the arts, and winning and losing, not living and dying. Somewhere along the way, thanks to this multi-media world, the life lessons of the martial arts such as; honor, loyalty, humility, senseiship, life and death and many others characteristics, are being slowly lost and forgotten. We all know that no one intended for this reality to be, but none the less it is still a reality that needs to be acknowledged.
Where we are today as artists has everything to do with where we have come from and those forgotten masters that blazed a trail long ago that the rest of us could follow. It is in thanks to those fabulous warriors of our past, that we are where we are today. There would be no UFC, Pride, IFL or anything else if it were not for the traditional real-life self defense warriors, full contact point competitors of the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s, full contact kick boxing from the 70’s and 80’s, and the overall commitment of the role of the Sensei to always make sure to give back more than they were given. Our martial history is our most valuable of treasures. It reminds us to always put the student first. To always give back more than you were given. To never forget that we are Sensei’s first. That means that we are teachers, trusted confidants, friends, brothers in the way, examples and very often simply a shoulder to lean on.
On August 16th, 2008, the Masters Hall of Fame recently celebrated its 9th year as an organization by holding its Hall of Fame induction event in Anaheim, California. The turn out was outstanding with approximately 350 people attending the event. We were fortunate to have Superfoot Bill Wallace as guest speaker and Inductee, for the event. Induction into the Hall of Fame included legends such as Kathy Long, Dewey Cooper, Grand Master Walter Borkowski and many other masters and legends. The Masters Hall of Fame has also developed a second organization called “The Academy of Masters” to recognize the contributions of the up and coming martial pioneers as they cut their own path through the woods, This years Academy of Masters Scholarship went to Kevin Weber, Kevin trains at Big John’s Dojo the Ultimate Training Academy in Southern California. Kevin also suffers from Cerebral Palsy, which has not slowed him down. His attitude and perseverance will ensure he is a success in whatever he decides to undertake in life. The scholarship funds will aide him in his quest for a degree in communications. Next years event looks to be even more incredible with the induction of two or three of the most respected artist on the planet.
It is our desire at the Masters Hall of Fame to reach out to all of you and invite you to meet and learn about us. Like you, we are just simple artists trying to bring honor to the gift we have been given. And keep one thing in mind, we are actively on the lookout for those special and dedicated warriors deserving of acknowledgement. As one of the alumni, I can tell you that it is an incredible group to belong to, making me always mindful of what an honor it is to be part of our martial family. The future belongs to us all. The only question is; what will we do with it? It is the intent of the Masters Hall of Fame to be a humble beacon in the fog for any striving artist, regardless of the art, to find a little piece of home.
Be well, train hard and always shoot for the stars.
Public Relations Director
Masters Hall of Fame
2007 Masters Hall of Fame Alumnus
About Master; Gregg Wooldridge
Master Wooldridge has spent over 33 years dedicated to the Martial Arts and holds an 8th Degree Black Belt in Kang-Chuan-Do. He has been tasked as the gate keeper of the Kang-Chuan-Do system while Grand Master Walter Borkowski addresses a major health issue.
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