We would like to briefly introduce our founding "Father of American Karate", the late Senior Grandmaster Edmund K. Parker. At sixteen years of age Ed Parker first began studying Kenpo with Frank Chow in his native homeland of Honolulu, Hawaii. Having been in many street fights himself, Mr. Parker quickly saw the benefits of Kenpo’s explosive action, minimum target exposure, and potential to ward off multiple attackers. Ed Parker is known as one of America’s foremost Karate Pioneers having opened the first karate studio in Provo, Utah in 1954. He opened his second school in Pasadena, CA in 1956, and within two years he was teaching many well known entertainment personalities. In 1961 Time Magazine referred to Ed Parker as the "High Priest and Prophet of the Hollywood sect". He taught such notables as Elvis Presley, Robert Wagner, Blake Edwards, Robert Culp, Robert Conrad, George Hamilton, Warren Beatty, and many others. In addition to his life long dedication and contribution to the Martial Arts, Mr. Parker had many firsts, such as the first; to teach a karate class on a university campus, to open a commercial studio in America, authentic karate technical advisor for television and movies in the U.S., to publish a rule booklet specifically for karate competition, and many others. Some of his most notable books include "The Encyclopedia of Kenpo", "The Zen of Kenpo", and the five volume series, "Infinite Insights into Kenpo". Today there are Ed Parker schools and affiliates throughout the United States, Ireland, Germany, England, New Zealand, Australia, Holland, Spain, Venezuela, Guatemala, Africa, Chile, and others.
Our Association's president is John Sepulveda, who has over 47 years experience in American Kenpo and holds an 9th Degree Black Belt (Master of the Arts). Mr. Sepulveda was one of a very few who was a direct student of Senior Grandmaster Parker before his untimely passing. Mr. Sepulveda is featured prominently in Joe Hyams' recent book, The Journey, which profiles prominent students of Ed Parker. To the uninitiated, this is a singular honor. Mr. Sepulveda has actively and successfully competed in many Open, National and International tournaments and has many junior and senior students who have also competed successfully at the same levels of competition. His students are known for their speed and explosive power as well as their character. Mr. Sepulveda has also appeared on television, and in national and international martial arts magazines, and has written numerous articles on the art of American Kenpo as perpetuated by Senior Grandmaster Ed Parker. Mr. Sepulveda is the founder of the "American Kenpo Training System" TM. This organization boasts member schools in the United States, from coast to coast. The European Kenpo Karate Association is AKTS affiliated under Mr. Sepulveda. He is one of the founding members of the "American Kenpo Senior Council" which boasts some of the best Kenpo practitioners worldwide. He has been recognized worldwide for his committed efforts in promoting Kenpo, which has included receiving many awards, including the California Karate League's "Official of the Year Award," and the Associated Teachers Association of the Martial Artists (ATAMA) "Hall of Fame Award." In 2007 he was inducted as a Charter Member of the Kenpo Hall of Fame and in 2008 he was inducted into the World Martial Arts Masters Association Hall of Fame. At the present time there are over 50 schools affiliated with Mr. Sepulveda throughout the United States, Europe, and South America.