List of the original Tae Kwon Do [I.T.F.] Pioneers

Baek Joong Ki
Bong Suk Keun
Cha Ji Chul
Chang Tae Ik
Chin Duk Young
Cho Hee Il
Cho Sang Min
Cho Soo She
Choi Chang Keun
Choi Kwang Jo
Choi Weh Bong
Choo Kyo IL
Chung Byung Gil
Chung Suk Jong
General Woo Jong Lim
Han Cha Kyo
Han Min Kyo
Hong Sung In
Hyun Jong Myung
Im Soon Ho
Kang Suh Jong
Kim Bok Man
Kim Bong Sik
Kim Gil Sung
Kim Han Chang
Kim Hong Sup
Kim In Mook
Kim Jong Chan
Kim Keun Joong
Kim Kwang Il
Kim Suk Kyu
Kim Syung Bok
Kim Yong Soo
Ko Jae Chun
Kong Young Il
Koo Pan Hong
Kwak Byung Oh
Kwon Jae Hwa
Lee Byung Moo
Lee Heang Ung
Lee Jae Bok
Lee Joon Jae
Lee Sang Koo
Lee Suk Hee
Lee Ung Sam
Lee Yoo Sun
Nam Tae Hi
Park Jong Soo
Park Jung Tae
Park Sun Jae
Park Yang Kyu
Rhee Jhoon Ku
Rhee Jong Chul
Rhee Jong Hyup
Rhee Ki Ha
Sung Kwang Yong
Woo Jae Lim
Yang Yoo Yup
Yoon Young Koo
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Grand Master Young-Chul Ra
General Choi Hong Hi
was born on November 9th, 1918, in the Hwa Dae Myong Chun
District of Korea. In 1959, General was named President of the
Korean Taekwon-Do Association. Seven years later, on March
22nd,1966, he created the International Taekwon-Do Federation
(ITF). As the Founder of Taekwon-Do and President of the ITF, he
had the ability to share his art with everywhere. Today,
Taekwon-Do training is available around the world. After a life
dedicated to the development of Taekwon-Do, a modern martial
art based on traditional values, philosophy, and training, General
Choi, Founder of Taekwon-Do and President of the International
Taekwon-Do Federation, died of cancer on June 15th, 2002, in the
country of his birth.
Kim Han Chang
One of the founding fathers of Taekwon-Do in Argentina.
TKD was introduced to the country in November 1967. Kim
Han Chang received his third Dan in 1966. He was known for
his flying scissors kick.After the ITF-WTF split that occurred
in 1979, Kim worked with his original Chung Do Kwan
school. He is ranked as Kuk Ki Won 9th Dan. Beyond
political disputes he is very respected by all  practitioners as
a true gentleman.
Brigadier Gen. Woo Jong Lim
Oh Do Kwan, originally called Dae Han Taekwon-Do Oh Do Kwan
Jung Ang Bon Kwan in Seoul, which trained the Korean Military
branches, the Korean Police throughout South Korea. General
Choi Hong Hi founded the Oh Do Kwan along with Nam Tae Hi in
the mid-1950s as part of the ROK Army's Physical Training
Program. The first people to instruct the ROK Army in "Tang Soo
Do" (as Taekwondo was called in the early 1950s) were Nam Tae
Hi, Woo Jong Lim, Ko Jae Chun, Kim Suk Kyu, Baek Joon Ki, Kwak
Keun Sik, Kim Bong Sik, Han Cha Kyo, Kim Bok Man (almost all of
whom were originally Chung Do Kwan members).Brigadier Gen.
Woo Jong Lim; Mr. Han Cha Kyo, the Head Instructor in Singapore
and Mr. Cha Soo Young eventually went on to spread the art to
the world.
  Colonel Ko Jae Chun
the 5th Chief of Taekwon-Do instructors in Vietnam.
Grand Master Kong, Young Il
A first-generation student of General Choi, Hong Hi,
the Father of Taekwon-Do, Grand Master Kong,
Young Il's Taekwon-Do roots are in the Oh Do
Kwan in Won Joo, Korea. Today, fifty-four years
later, Grand Master Kong, Young Il teaches the
martial art of Taekwon-Do with the same
approaches and rigor he learned from the Father
of Taekwon-Do and perfected through continuous
practice of the art. Grand Master Kong, Young Il
is steadfastly focused on promoting Taekwon-Do
and General Choi's legacy.
Park Jong Soo
Master Park was born in 1941 in Chung-Nam, Korea.He holds a 9th
Dan black belt in TaeKwon-Do. At the age of 14, and since then,
he has been the instructor of the Police Training Centre of Chun
Bok in Korea and of the famed Tiger Division of the Korean Army.
In 1964, he became Korean National Champion, and in 1965 he
made a trip on request of the Korean Government, as a member
of the Goodwill Mission for Tae Kwon-Do, demonstrating this art
before the highest civil and military authorities of the countries
they visited. In that same year, he was invited to Germany as the
coach of the German Tae Kwon-Do Association.In 1966, he left
Germany to go to Holland where he founded the Netherlands Tae
Kwon-Do Association. In the beginning of 1968, he left for Canada
and now has his own schools in the Greater Toronto Area.In
November 1973, Master Park made another world trip to promote
Tae Kwon-Do in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. Master
Park is known as one of the world's greatest Tae Kwon-Do
Nam Tae Hi
In 1946 a young Korean named Nam Tae Hi
began his martial arts training. He would leave
school at 3:30 p.m. and go to the Dojang and
train, not returning home until midnight. This was
a 5 day a week regimen. Tang Soo Do training
continued under Won Kuk lee at the Chung Do
Kwan, and classmates included, Sun Duc Son,
and Uhm Woon Kyu (the current head of the
Chung Do Kwan in South Korea.)
Grand Master Rhee Ki Ha
Tae Kwon-Do is truly a Martial Art, having been used in the
Korean War and is now a compulsory part of the training schedule
of every Korean Solider. It was in this environment that Grand
Master Rhee began his training and came to be regarded as the
number one pioneer instructor being the first instructor to leave
Korea for the purpose of teaching Tae Kwon-Do. He took the bold
step of leaving his homeland and family to come halfway across
the world to the UK in order to spread the art he loved. Then, in
1967, the teaching of Tae Kwon-Do in Britain began in earnest,
initially with a military theme on bases across the country,
eventually spreading to many non-military schools. Using
contacts made in Singapore while founding the Singapore Tae
Kwon-Do Association, Mr. Rhee, then V Dan, started to earn his
living doing what he did best - teaching Tae Kwon-Do! The Main
stay of his operation was the Royal Air Force. Service men who
had learned the Art in Singapore invited Mr. Rhee to teach the
here in the UK and the classes proved to be very popular. They
grew into what we call the United Kingdom Tae Kwon-Do
GM CK Choi believes that Tae Kwon Do practioners must train
both the mind and the body to achieve the highest levels of
physical fitness and mental discipline.  This will uncover the
ultimate person within.
Grand Master Jung Tae Park
Among the first instructors to carry the national Korean sport
outside the country, Mr. Park was hailed as a pioneer of modern
tae kwon do. An immigrant to Canada in the early '70s, he later
founded the Global Taekwon Do Federation, one of the strongest
such federations in the world and the only one free of political
affiliations. Contrary to tae kwon do traditionalists, Mr. Park
believed that the form should keep on growing and created more
than a dozen new patterns and teachings. In 1995, he created the
longest pattern, the Jook-am, which is 95 moves and can take 10
minutes to complete.
Grand Master Hwang Kwang
Grandmaster Hwang was born in Teagu Korea. Taegu is the third
largest city south of the 38th parallel, and is south east of Seoul
and north of Busan. At the age of eleven, he started his martial
arts training. After graduating with a degree in Political Science
from KyungPook National University he joined the Republic of
Korean Army as a commissioned officer in 1964. Serving as a
Korean Airborne and Ranger officer and serving his country in
Vietnam. He was stationed in Saigon, Chu Ly, and several others.
He taught Taekwon-Do to the Korean Tiger Division, the Korean
Army, the US Army and the US Marines along with the Vietnamese
Army. Receiving commendation medals from Korea and Vietnam.
1970 marked his retirement from the ROK Army as a Captain, and
Service Company Commander of the 26th Infantry Division. Also
known as the Taekwon-Do Division.
Grandmaster Hee Il Cho
He has won
numerous national and international open
competitions and has appeared in several
films, including Fight to Win, Best of the Best,
Bloodsport II, and Bloodsport III. He is a
member of the Black Belt magazine Black Belt
Hall of Fame.
At nearly 70 years old, Grandmaster Cho is
one of the most respected, dedicated and
accomplished martial artist in the world. He has produced
over 67 Tae Kwon Do training videos, written 11 books, has
been featured on over 50 martial arts magazine covers, and is
the founder of the Action International Martial Arts
Association (AIMAA). Grandmaster Cho also personally
teaches every Tae Kwon Do class at his Tae Kwon Do center
and AIMAA world headquarters in Honolulu.
a true legend in the martial arts community, is one of the
most respected martial artist of our time. Grandmaster Cho
has been inducted to every major martial art Hall of Fame and
has shared his 50 years of knowledge with thousands of people
around the world. Grandmaster Cho has students journey
from all parts of the world to train and study with him. From
Ireland to India and all throughout the United States and
Canada, martial arts students travel several times each year to
enhance their skills as a martial artist. Grandmaster Cho has
also instructed some of Hollywood's biggest stars as well as
co-starred in several motion pictures himself.
Grandmaster Kwon,
Kwon, Jae-Hwa was born in 1937 in Pusan, a large harbour town in
South Korea. He began practicing Taekwon-Do in his youth and
soon made notice of himself through his exceptional talents. In
Hae, Dea-Yeong, 6th Dan, he found a devoted mentor and coach
who was totally devoted to the advancement of his students.
Upon completion of college studies, in
journalism, he was employed by Pusan IIbbo,
the town’s largest daily news publication. But his life’s main
commitment was still Taekwon-Do. At the age of 24 he was Chief
Instructor (highest ranking coach) of the Yonmu-Kwan Taekwon-
Do Schools. In 1964 he was appointed to the post of Association
Technical Director for most of the Taekwon-Do departments at
public schools - as well for private Taekwon-Do schools, and
universities in the region of Pusan. Grandmaster Kwon, Jae-Hwa
is also active functionary in both of these positions until this very
Grandmaster Bok Man Kim
Due in part to the efforts of Bok Man Kim, a 10th Degree black
belt who has pioneered the international development of
traditional Tae Kwon Do. He has been instructing for the past 53
years. Over the course of his career he has taught and performed
for presidents and royalty in Southeast Asia and Europe.
Grandmaster Ko Jae Chun

In 1959, Choi Hong Hi toured the Far East with his top
nineteen black belts. The tour was a major success, astounding
spectators with Taekwondo's kicking techniques. Many of
these same black belts later went on to spread Taekwondo to
the world. Colonel Ko Jae Chun later became the 5th Chief of
Taekwondo Instructors.

Grand Master Joon Jae Lee
Born in Chun-ju City, South Korea, Master Lee has earned
international recognition during his many years of promoting Tae
Kwon-Do around the world. A holder of a 9th Degree Black Belt,
he commenced his study of the martial art at the age of thirteen.
Through long days of intense, rigorous training, he became an
instructor in his home province and eventually instructed in the
Korean army. Following his discharge from the army, he was
accepted into the Korean Police as an Instructor of the Force. He
won the Police Championships and received top honours in the
1967 Korean National Championship. Master Lee was then invited
to a charity demonstration in Singapore. As a result of his
impressive display, the Singapore Tae Kwon-Do Association
asked him to remain in the country and instruct the art. Two years
later, Master Lee left on a world tour of teaching and
demonstrating Tae Kwon-Do. He was one of the first Korean
masters to introduce the art in Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong,
and North America. By early 1970 Master Lee settled in Calgary,
Alberta, pioneering the art of Tae Kwon-Do throughout Western
Grand Master Kwang Duk


Grand Master Kwang Duk Chung first brought Taekwon-Do to
Argentina in 1967. As executive director of the International
Taekwon-Do Federation, he carried the word and practice of
Taekwon-Do all over South and Central America. For the first time,
in 1968, he officially introduced the traditional Taekwon-Do of
I.T.F. in New York. Eventually in 1990, feeling the need to
preserve the true essence of Taekwon-Do, Master Chung
founded the International Taekwon-Do Society. The first I.T.S.
World Taekwon-Do Championship was helt in New York City
(1994), followed by a second in Brazil (1997). Currently, Grand
Master Chung is instructing and giving seminars to masters and
instructors of I.T.S. in New York, every Sunday, the same way he
has been doing it for the past 40 years.
In 2008, Grand Master K. D. Chung founded the All International
TaeKwon-Do Federation (A.I.T.F.) with Grand Masters Kang Seo
Jong, Yu Hong Sun, Masters Franklin Araujo, Manuel Nina.
Andrade Adon, Martin Song, Hector Espinal, Robin Robertson,
Peter Lennon, Peter Van Slyke, Ramon Prensa, and Instructors
Julio Mateo, Fredy Miller, Ronald Suarez, Yeison de los Santos,
and Jean Ann McNanus.
Grand Master Son Myung Soo
Grandmaster Son (9th Dan), is President, founder and Chief
Instructor for the Royal Tae Kwon Do Federation ( Toronto,
Canada ). GM Son has taught Korean Martial Arts in Toronto,
Canada , since 1971 and over the years has produced many fine
martial artists, numerous black belt champions (including
Canadian National Champions).

Accomplishments in Taekwondo

Awarded doctorate in Philosophy in Asian Martial Arts History,
WAMAPS, Feb. 2010

Awarded doctorate in Philosophy in Korean Martial Art History,
World MA League,08'

Hall of Fame, Int'l Tae-Kwon-Do Diamond Lifetime Achievement
Award, WMAL, 2008

Awarded Korea Culture Award as pioneer in Korean Martial Arts,
Korean Can Award Committee, 2002

Founder and President of the "Royal Taekwondo Do Federation"
“Taekwon-Do could not possibly have achieved the status it enjoys today without the tears of silent agony shed by
the Pioneer’s of Taekwon-Do who strove against all odds to introduce their art to the world”

General Choi Hong Hi