I started my judo training in New York at the Mid-Westchester YMCA in 1972 under a big Scotsman named Cowan Swanson. When I moved to Hickory, NC in 1978, I could not find a Judo school so I took American Freestyle Karate from Sensei Arthur Fergusson for almost 3 years. In 1980, I went to the US Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point NY. I studied under Sensei Ryohei Konokogi, whose main dojo is on Flatbush Ave in Brooklyn. Konokogi was a US Olympic team coach, and produced many National and International competitors.
After graduating in 1984 I went back to Hickory and studied Tang Soo Do with Sensei Kim Duncan, one of Chuck Norris' protégés. I moved closer to Charlotte and studied with Sensei Phil Rasmussen at Central Piedmont Community College. After I received my Shodan, 1st degree black belt, I started the judo club at the University of NC in Charlotte, which lasted more than 2 ½ years. At the same time, I began studying with Sensei Pat Szrejter at C.A.J.A., the Carolinas American Judo Association.
During the period between 1986 and 2006, I had the opportunity to study with Ed Byers, Gus Carper, Ernie Cates, Ronald Charles, Ed Griffin, Ron Hansen, George Harris, Kenny Nazemetz, Phil Porter, Tom Reiff, Jimmy Riggs, Ed Szrejter, and many more.
Sensei Phil's Current Ranks
Judo - Godan (5th Degree)
Ju Jitsu - Sandan (3rd Degree)
Certificates and Awards
Certified Judo Instructor - US Judo Association
Certified Judo Rank Examiner – US Judo Association
Certified Ju Jitsu Rank Examiner – US Judo Association
Phil's Tournament Highlights
1984 - 2nd @ Eastern Collegiate
1984 - 2nd @ Eastern Regionals
1991 - 1st and 2nd @ NC State Championships
2001 - 3rd @ NC State Championships
2006 - 2nd @ Grand Canyon State Games
2007 - 1st @ AZ State Championship & 3rd @ Grand Canyon State Games
2008 - 1st @ AZ State Championships & 2nd @ Grand Canyon State Games
2009 - 2nd @ AZ State Championship & 2nd @ Grand Canyon State Games
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