By now everybody has come and gone but the great memories will be forever as well as the accomplishments of the candidates. Let’s hear it for Charles Green who was promoted to his 3rd (Sam Dan) Dan and for our newly promoted 2nd (Ea Dan) Dans, Nolan Sosa and Oscar Dominguez Jr We also brought in three new Chodans into our association from Grandmaster Jesse Rodriguez dojang, existing Black belt, Albert and Elizabeth Garcia and Alyssha Rodriguez, congratulations to all of them, better people you will not find. The Black belt Council was very impressed.
The banquet was a rousing success, one of the best I can ever remember, over 70 people attended. Master Eric Jones assisted by Ms. Ea Dan Helen Espinoza did a bang up job and predicted my every need and the people within the organization. Food was great, people were great, the location was great. We couldn’t have asked for more. Sam Dan Joey DuPuis surprised everybody by being there and being the Emcee for the night, as usual, right on cue. My sister, Silvia Volkmann helped procure the restaurant as well as even serving and cleaning up, you can’t beat that from a sister.
Our yearly awards were given out and the following people are to be commended on their accomplishments this year, they definitely earned them and more:
- Grandmaster Clarence Smith – TKA Senior Black belt Instructor of the Year
- Ea Dan Nolan Sosa – TKA Junior Instructor of the Year
- Ea Dan Stephanie DeLoach – TKA Instructor of the Year
- Master Michael Hornsby – TKA Black belt Competitor of the Year
- Grandmaster Clarence Smith – TKA Senior Black belt Competitor of the Year
- Chodan Douglas Mase – TKA Blackbelt of the Year
Sam Dan Rod Garrett did a great job of proctoring the test and managing the best time ever at our testing, along with Master Gabriel Green as the Chair person.
Grandmaster Rodriguez’ dojang was used for the test and it was absolutely awesome and just perfect for our little family. We had over 25 black belts sitting on the board, and GM Jesse’s whole family including his wife Rose and Father Simon who helped make it just the right environment for all to enjoy as well as his black belts.
Grandmaster Larry Kaminsky picked up the James Cummings Spirit Award for all of his dedicated work to Tang Soo and the association this year. Awesome.
Danny Valdez was awarded a special Letter of Commendation from the Council for his body of work and contributions.
Special acknowledgments were made to all serving soldiers, airman and seamen and how much we miss them but know that they are doing something far greater than ourselves. Military awards were given out as well as retiree coins to TLC Mike Simpson and CMSgt Joey DuPuis for all their lifelong duty in the United States Army and Air Force respectively.
Master Gabe Green received an award for traveling the furthest this year.
We had a special demonstration by a visiting Black belt from the valley, Chodan Joseph Rodriguez who had nothing but kind words for the TKA; we were honored by his visit.
A lot of warriors that we haven’t seen in awhile came out and supported and hopefully, a new spirit was born in a lot of the Black belts which was needed.
Thank you to all for your continued support, the 16th Annual Banquet and the 15th Annual Conference went off without a hitch, appreciate the fine work that was put into it and look forward already to next year’s event.