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About the Instructors
Dec 1st, 2008viewed 4653 times
This information is from our school's handbook. It gives a brief summary of our teachers.

Instructors

Professor Byron Walker (1943-2002) - Founder and Grandmaster

Ranks awarded:

  • 1st dan, Shotokan Karate, Dai Ichi Karate Association
  • 3rd dan, U.S. Tang Soo Do Federation-Moo Duk Kwan
  • 6th dan, Kodenkan Jujitsu, Hawaiian Jiu-jitsu System, Inc.

In 1975, Professor Walker was employed as a federal police officer with the U.S. Dept. of Energy. He became a police firearms instructor for that agency in 1976. He was also an avid pistol competitor.

In 1983, he wrote, implemented and taught the first formal arrest and restraining course for the Energy Department courier force, a paramilitary organization responsible for the security and transport of nuclear weapons and components throughout the United States. This course was taught to field officers during their advanced tactical training and to recruits at the agency's academy.

Professor Walker taught or assisted in the instruction of suspect control, handcuffing, firearms, cover and concealment, field tactics, explosives recognition and terrorist tactics. He later wrote a manual concerning international terrorist operations.

He left government service because of an injury sustained in training. In 1994, he founded the School of Eight Directions. He was a member of the board of directors of the Hawaiian Jiu-jitsu System, Inc., and the author of Kodenkan Jujitsu, School of Eight Directions, Volume I.

Professor Walker died in 2002.


Master Jerry Strickland - President

Ranks awarded:

  • 4th dan, Tang Soo Do, World Tang Soo Do Association
  • 4th dan (honorary), Kodenkan Jujitsu, Hawaiian Jiu-jitsu System, Inc.
  • 6th dan, Eight Directions Martial Arts

Jerry Strickland was an accomplished athlete well before he turned his talents to martial arts. He enrolled in a gymnastics school at the age of six, and by the age of nine, he had begun to compete regularly as a trampolinist. At fourteen, he entered his first world event and placed fifth in trampoline. The University of Oklahoma awarded him a full athletic scholarship, and he held a place on their team until a knee injury forced him out of competition.

Since that time, he has remained active in coaching. He established the Amarillo School of Gymnastics and built it into a highly successful program. He did extensive post-graduate study in exercise physiology and psychology as a double-major Master's degree candidate at West Texas State University, and earned a Master's degree in Professional Counseling from Texas State University in San Marcos.

He was introduced to martial arts as a teenager, when he trained for 11/2 years under Sensei Tim Joe in the arts of Judo and Kyokushinkai Karate. After the knee injury ended his career as a competitive gymnast, he returned to martial arts, learning Tang Soo Do under Byron Walker.

He was the chief instructor of the Amarillo School of Tang Soo Do from 1976 through 1986. Then, he headed the Bergstrom School of Tang Soo Do from 1987 through 1994.

Master Strickland is a gifted teacher. His insights and guidance have made him instrumental in perpetuating the School of Eight Directions.


Michael D. Jones - Chief Instructor

Ranks awarded:

  • Third dan, Tang Soo Do, World Tang Soo Do Association
  • Third dan (honorary), Kodenkan Jujitsu, Hawaiian Jiu-Jitsu System, Inc.
  • Blue belt, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, William Vandry - Austin BJJ
  • Fifth dan, Eight Directions Martial Arts

Mr. Jones began his martial arts training at the age of fourteen, learning Tang Soo Do under Byron Walker. Since that time, he has sought training in other disciplines, to include Kodenkan Jujitsu, Brazilian Jujitsu, free-style wrestling and JKD Concepts. He has written and implemented the current curriculum of the School of Eight Directions, which includes elements of all of these arts.

Mr. Jones is employed as a paraprofessional instructional assistant at the disciplinary alternative education center in Leander, TX. His duties include instructional supervision, tutorial assistance and classroom management in secondary and elementary levels. His work experience also includes extensive involvement in special education behavioral management programs for emotionally disturbed high school students.


Mike Deichman - Assistant Instructor

Ranks awarded:

  • 1st dan, Tang Soo Do, World Tang Soo Do Association
  • 3rd dan, Eight Directions Martial Arts

Mr. Deichman began martial arts training at the age of eleven, learning Tang Soo Do under Michael Jones. He has distinguished himself through his continued pursuit of excellence in martial skill and his dedication to the guiding principles of the School of Eight Directions.


Class Instructors:

Mark Adams - E Dan #006, School of Eight Directions

Bill Deichman - E Dan #007, School of Eight Directions

Matt Klaser - E Dan #008, School of Eight Directions

Olivia Wilde - E Dan #009, School of Eight Directions

Chris Davis - E Dan #011, School of Eight Directions

Eliot Wild - E Dan #012, School of Eight Directions


Black Belts:

Joel Morales - Cho Dan #004

Meghann Mendoza - Cho Dan #010











Master Mike Jones
Chief Instructor
School of Eight Directions
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