26 October 2011

Taekwondo Hall of Fame Citation

Image Source: Taekwondo Hall of Fame
I attended the recent 2011 Taekwondo Hall of Fame ceremony, that was held at the Kukkiwon, Seoul, on August 25th in support of Master Kim Hoon. I knew that he was to receive a citation, so I wanted to be there in representation of 'The Way' Martial Art Academy of Seoul, the only ITF dojang in Seoul. I also went in support of instructors Anton Conchon and David Kerr from Brazil whom I met a few days earlier when they visited 'The Way'. Instructor Conchon received a citation for his contribution as an instructor and Mr. Kerr was inducted for his achievements as a multiple world champion. I was further excited about the opportunity to meet a number of other people I hold in high esteem, for instance Master Noemi Prone of whom I wrote before.

Great was my surprise towards the end of the ceremony when I also heard my own name called. At first I thought it must have been some kind of mistake, but was indeed my name and title, "Research & Education Director for South Africa-ITF", printed on it. Since I wasn't sure what to make of this, I even went so far as to contact the Taekwondo Hall of Fame executive director, Master Gerard Robbins, to ask him why I had received a citation from the organization and how I should report back to my national governing body (SA-ITF). He graciously indulged me and seemed somewhat surprised that I should ask such a question. I guess not that many people ask why they receive something when they receive it; I hope that my inquiry wasn't discourteous. He explained that I received the citation because of my work in research and education for South Africa and for my support of the Taekwondo Hall of Fame and referred to the post I wrote on Master Noemi Prone as an example of said support. He added that: "You can report back to South Africa that you were recognized by the Taekwondo Hall of Fame with a citation for your hard work."

Me and Master Gerard Robbins,
Executive Director of the
Taekwondo Hall of Fame.
On a side note, the certificate erroneously describes me as "Master".  Although Korean martial arts use "master" for an instructor from 4th Dan and higher, within the ITF system one is only called a "master" from 7th Dan. I am still far from there. See my post on the titles used in ITF Taekwon-Do.

Also, for sake of clarification, I was not inducted into the Hall of Fame; I was merely given a general "citation"--an honourable mention. The Taekwondo Hall of Fame has different levels for honouring someone. There are two types of certifications awarded by the Hall of Fame: a citation and an induction. The latter, of course, is when someone becomes a member of the Hall of Fame. This is not the case for someone receiving a citation. Furthermore, as I understand it, there are general citations and specific citations; examples of specific citations are citations for leadership, coaching, and so on. These carry more value than general citations as the one I received.


JoRoman said...

Congratulations! Always a nice surprise to receive praise from your fellow practitioners (one of the few times I wouldn't mind being blindsided :-)

SooShimKwan said...

Was indeed a nice surprise. Thank you.

Morlan Carr said...

Congratulations Sir!

SooShimKwan said...

Hi Morlan,

Thank you.

And thanks for supporting my blog.