The second interview I had at the Korean Martial Arts Festival in Crestview, Florida was with Grandmaster Ken MacKenzie. My goal was to ask him about his plans for the second annual Korean Martial Arts Masters Hall Of Fame, because he is the host for that event.
Before you take a look at the video, please let me explain a bit more about the KMAMhof, as it is quite different from most martial arts Halls Of Fame. These differences are the very reason why I founded the KMAMhof. Let me explain. In every other sporting hall of fame, only the very best get inducted; however, my experience has been that this is not so with martial arts. There, unfortunately, we see people get inducted not for standing head and shoulders above their team mates or others playing int the same field, but for simply accepting an invitation to an expensive dinner. How do I know that? Well, I know because I have attended a number of them.
At these events I attended, I expected to see a few martial artists who were simply outstanding. Unfortunately, I saw way too many people there that no one had ever seen or heard of, and they were given honours that should have been reserved for the best of the best. Instead, they were handed an award simply because they had paid their way… NOT their dues. This is harsh to hear, and it breaks my heart that this is even possible. To be sure, there ARE a few good halls of fame out there, and some very great martial artists ARE inducted in them. Still, even those Halls Of Fame induct many people at the time. I wanted to do something different, something more meaningful than standing beside dozens of Grandmasters and Masters who received the same accolades.
My vision was to induct only Korean stylists, and only a handful at each event. This I wanted to do, so we could give ample time to the icons we wanted to induct, and I also wanted it to be done in a way that had no politics attached to it. I wanted a Hall Of Fame where even my worst enemy could be inducted, regardless of how I felt about him… I wanted their contributions to be the only thing that mattered. In other words, the decision should be made by more than the guy paying the bills for the awards and the hall rental. To me, this was the only way we could be sure to induct the PEOPLE’s choice. To do it this way, I set up a Facebook group, as well as a page, where people could send in their nominations from all over the world. I also gathered a group of highly respected Grandmasters and Masters whose only interest was to see the best of the best inducted into our Hall Of Fame. To make sure this Ambassador Team is truly interested in working for the good of the Hall, they were even ask to make a donation. I figured if someone is generous enough to make a donation without expecting anything in return, I could be pretty sure that their interests were for the good of the Korean martial arts. This Ambassador team is charged with helping me sift through the nominations we receive, make recommendations, and BE there to assist in any way possible.
I will create another page with the details on how one cent be nominated. There IS a process that needs to be adhered to, and we ignore all inquiries that do not follow these simple guidelines.
For now, let’s just hear what Grandmaster Ken MacKenzie has planned for the 2nd annual Korean Martial Arts Masters Hall Of Fame. Details of the event are listed on our EVENTS page, just look for events for the month of August.