The Original Taekwon-Do Federation of America (OTFA) held a Master’s examination on August 8, 2020. The examination was conducted by Grandmaster Akard and Grandmaster Neidig in Broomfield, Colorado.
The examination, which included 3 candidates for 7th Dan and 3 candidates for 8th Dan, had to be rescheduled multiple times as the Covid virus caused event cancellations.
The journey to reach this level has been long and a large part of their adult life with all candidates having over 30 years of experience and two 8th Dan candidates having over 40 years of experience in ITF Taekwon-Do. For the 8thDan candidates, this experience includes participation as an umpire at both World Cup and World Championship events by Master Kerner and Master McNamara and as a USA Team Coach by Master Springsguth for the past 3 World events.
The candidates accelerated their training in the months leading up to the test and each had mentors over-seeing their progress. Due to Covid, some candidates relied on Zoom to train with their instructor and mentors, while others were able to train in person. Master Fruitstone moderated 3 mock oral boards, each of which was 3+ hrs., to quiz the candidates on topics involving stances, technique, application, history, philosophy and much more. In addition, each candidate completed a written examination administered by Grandmaster Suárez.
This examination was very special and meaningful to all, but especially to Mr. Beck, a 7th Dan candidate. Mr. Beck tested for his 1st, 2nd 3rd Dan’s between the years of 1968-1976 with the General as examiner. He then took a 20+ yr. hiatus, before continuing his training and finally test for Master 7th Degree.
The OTFA is continuing grow and has a bright future with these new promotions and will continue with the Mentorship Program used to prepare this group of candidates. Senior ranks will work with the upcoming 6th Dans as they prepare for their next promotion. This will continue to raise the readiness of the next promotion candidates and keep our Masters involved and up-to-date. In addition, there are plans to establish a Master’s Board to assist in further development of the organization.
Promoted to 7th Degree Master: Mrs. Ranieri, Mr. Dandeneau and Mr. Beck.
Promoted to 8th Degree Master: Master Kerner, Master McNamara and Master Springsguth
Special guests at the examination were Grandmaster Thibado, Master Nunez, Master Pam Neidig and Master Roena. The test was directed by Master Avila, while the Grandmasters graded the examination. Other attendees present during the test were Mrs. Dandeneau, Mr. Hick and Mrs. Giovino.
Master Fabian Nunez