President's Message

  • 17 Nov 2013 3:48 PM | Steven Menasche

    It is a great honor for me to take the helm of Jujitsu America and serve as its new president.  I am humbled to follow in the footsteps of Danzan Ryu and Jujitsu America greats such as Professors Wally Jay, Sig Kufferath, Chow Hoon, Carl Beaver, Willy Cahill and Toru Tanaka. 

    Jujitsu America’s legacy is rooted in traditional Kodenkan Danzan Ryu Jujitsu, with an emphasis on "progressive diversity." This diversity, combined with a steadfast commitment to maintaining the integrity of our roots, is now and has always been a key factor in distinguishing Jujitsu America from other organizations. 

    With the passing of so many of our Danzan Ryu and Jujitsu America elders, this organization has reached an important crossroads.  It is imperative that the next generation – and those who follow behind –  step up to the plate to perpetuate not only the techniques, but the tradition, the culture and the very heart of Jujitsu America. Part of this effort entails fostering greater unity within the organization, inclusion of all of the varied traditions and techniques of our members, and openness to learning from other martial artists both within and outside of Jujitsu America. 

    In my role as president of this amazing organization, I will do my best to perpetuate the progressive diversity and the ongoing exchange of ideas that has kept Jujitsu America vital and growing. In the tradition of Danzan Ryu, I will do my best to give back to the organization that has given me so much, and call upon you, the members, to do the same.


    Mahalo Nui Loa

    Prof. Richard Bunch



  • 17 Nov 2013 7:57 AM | Steven Menasche

    Greetings and best wishes to all our Jujitsu America members and friends!
    I hope this letter finds you and yours doing well. At this time of year, it’s
    good to pause and reflect on what is most important in our lives and all
    those things for which we are thankful.

    Among many other things, I am thankful for the opportunity to have
    served this outstanding organization as an officer for the past 14 years,
    and the last four years as President. It has been an honor and a privilege
    to provide leadership and support, working together with so many
    wonderful folks to make a difference for JA. My primary goal has been to
    enhance the membership experience for all.

    Some of the achievements during my administration which I highlighted
    during the Board Meeting at the JA Annual Convention we just presented
    in September include:

     Membership level increase, with several new schools and members
     Financial growth
     Regular regional training clinics for traditional and progressive arts
     Encouraged broader involvement in JA: e.g., instituted conference calls as part of the Board Meetings for all representatives to have a voice in the direction of the JA organization, and continued to present Board meetings in various locations to drive wider participation
     Developed new website and online membership registration, as well as electronic payment for events
     Produced outstanding annual conventions on both coasts
     Regularly presented national and local tournaments
     Built alliance with USJA including joint membership program and joint events

    At the convention, we held elections for officers and warmly welcome the following into their new roles:
     President: Professor Richard Bunch
     1st Vice President: Sensei Chris Peterson
     2nd Vice President: Sensei Jamie Dyson
     Secretary: Sensei Carla Bunch
     Treasurer: Sensei Judie Kasper
     Registration Chairman: Professor Joe Souza
     Directors: Sensei Tony DeBattista, Sensei Shane Thompson, and Sensei Laura Welch

    This is an outstanding team of committed individuals who have all worked very hard and continue to make tremendous contributions to the direction and operation of Jujitsu America. I’m pleased to maintain my active role with the organization, and look forward to the continued growth and success of Jujitsu America with this new team and all our members!

    All the best,
    Professor Eric Renner
    Past President
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software