History > Who's Who in Kajukenbo

Grandmaster Gerald Chavez


John Bishop:

Gerald A. Chavez, began his training with Prof. Sam Allred at West Mesa High School in Albuquerque, NM in 1967.  He was Allred's first student to achieve the rank of black belt in the art of Kajukenbo Kempo Karate.  Chavez also earned from Prof. Allred his brown belt 2 kyu in Kodokan Judo.  He was head instructor of Allred's Karate College of the Southwest, originally headquartered at the University of Albuquerque, and assisted with the organization of Thunderbird Kajukenbo Activities, inc.  These activities included the "National Karate Black Belt Championships", the "Central North American Karate Championships," the "Southwest Open Karate Championships," the "National Karate Blackbelt Grand Championships," and many other demonstrations and presentations in the United States, Mexico, and Europe.
Chavez went on to open his own Kajukembo school, Life-Dance Martial Arts, which continues to function to in Albuquerque, NM.  He became a volunteer at the Albuquerque Rape Crisis Center, where he taught self-defense to survivors.  While doing his work at the Albuquerque Rape Crisis center, he was awarded Volunteer of the Year by the Governor of the State of New Mexico, Bruce King.  He also did work for the "Shelter for Victims of Domestic Violence" in Albuquerque, NM.
In 1980 Chavez wrote his first book on self-defense, Karate Callejero (in Spanish) for Edamex Publishing Company in Mexico City.  Shortly thereafter, he wrote his second book, "Que Hacer Ante una AgresiĆ³n Sexual."  One of his achievements he is most proud of is his collaboration with Prof. Sam Allred on the book "Autodefensa Callejera," which was published in 1995.
In 1984, Chavez pioneered a self-defense program at Memorial Psychiatric Hospital with Dr. Tom Carey.  Gerald taught karate to patients to address issues of self-esteem, depression, substance abuse, and anxiety.  Gerald, along with other members of Thunderbird Kajukembo, sponsored a variety of workshops and seminars featuring many of the pivotal figures in Kajukembo.  These included Prof Al Dacascos, Prof. Jon Loren, Ahgung Tony Ramos (deceased), Sifu Bill Owens, Sifu Eric Lee, and Alii Don Nahoolewa.
Chavez played an important role in the reformation of the International Kajukenbo Association.  He was regional director for the State of New Mexico and later was elected to the position of secretary-treasurer.
He had made frequent visits to Mexico to train with Prof. Sam Allred, and to work with his students. During his latest visit, he had the opportunity to give a workshop for 35 black belts at the training center of Maestro Mac Cimas, which is located on the campus of the huge Universitario Politecnico in Mexico City.
Currently he is President of the American Kajukembo Association, which is Chaired by Alli Don Nahoolewa, who is Prof. Allred's instructor.  Gerald continues to teach at Life-Dance Martial Arts three days a week while completing his PhD in Clinical Psychology.


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