|▲ © Dr. George Vitale ( WTU)
(Contribution)Dr. George Vitale Spokesman ITF Taekwon-Do NYC – USA
(Dr. George Vitale’s fascination with the fighting arts began with Western systems as a youngster with boxing, spurred on by his Father’s interest. As a teen he trained in Wrestling, competing locally in both. His introduction to the Eastern Arts began with an exposure to Tang Su Do. Thereafter he enrolled in Taekwon-Do under the tutelage of Master Kim Kwang-Sung (K-7-45) at ITF Main Gym #21 in the early 1970s. Grandmaster Kim born in Gwangju, Korea was originally from the Moo Duk Kwan and was a Taekwon-Do Pioneer in West Germany. Dr. Vitale’s extensive involvement in Taekwon-Do saw him traveling nationally since 1984 and internationally since 1987. To date he has been to over 70 countries pursuing his love for Taekwon-Do, as a student, teacher, researcher and producer. His main area of interest is the history of Taekwon-Do. He is currently involved in 3 documentaries and writing a book on the subject. The Graduate School work he has done since 1993 has culminated in his earning an academic Doctorate Degree from north Korea, the first American to ever do so. As a result of the expertise he has developed over the decades he is often invited to share his experiences with various institutions and media outlets. Master Vitale is happy to have the opportunity to now share with followers of this website.)
|▲ © ITF President, Master Ri Yong-Son (WTU)
The International Taekwon-Do Federation (ITF) headquartered in Vienna Austria announced today the ITF International Demonstration Team that will perform at the world championships hosted by the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF), will be led by ITF President, Master Ri Yong-Son. The event will be held in MuJu (south) Korea (ROK). The team will be joined by ITF Honorary Life President Prof. Chang Ung, PhD and IOC Member. Prof. Chang will be on hand to meet with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Dr. Thomas Bach. Dr. Bach will attend the closing Ceremony, scheduled for Friday June 30.
It is important that to note that Dr. Bach and Prof. Chang will be joined by several other IOC Members, as next year (2018), Pyeongchang will be the host city for the XXIII Winter Olympiad. At present, Prof. Chang is the only full Member of the IOC from the Korean Peninsula.
The ITF International Demo Team will be comprised of:
Prof. Ri Yong-Son of Vienna Austria
Grandmaster Leong Wai Meng of Greenland
Grandmaster Hwang Ho-Yong of the Czech Republic
Grandmaster Michael Prewitt of Wales, UK
Dr. George Vitale of NYC, USA
Master Mario Bogdanov of Bulgaria
The demonstration performers will include 10 males and 2 females from the northern half of Korea, (DPRK)
The ITF Team will be supported by Instructors and other staff of the Korean Taekwon-Do Committee(KTC) in Pyongyang, Korea. The KTC is the official National Governing Body (NGB) for the ITF in the DPRK. There will also be two journalists from Pyongyang who will cover the event. Additionally Grandmaster Jung Woo-Jin, the last of only seven people to be promoted to 9th Degree (IX Dan) the highest Black Belt level by General Choi Hong-Hi(1918-2002), will join the team as a VIP.
Grandmaster Jung served as a long time confident and advisor to General Choi when he was alive. As a every experienced Independent Tae Kwon Do Pioneer, he acts as a senior advisor to the ITF and other martial art entities. Grandmaster Jung, CEO of TKD Times Magazine(www,taekwondotimes.com), whose motto is "uniting the world through martial arts" is directly in line with the goal of General Choi's Taekwon-Do of building "a more peaceful world!"
|▲ © General Choi Hong-Hi (WTU)
The final Korean Taekwon-Do Tul (Poomsae or Pattern) designed by General Choi is called TONG-IL, which denotes General Choi long held dream of reuniting his beloved homeland of Korea.
In addition to the opening and closing ceremony performances at the Taekwondowon, site of the WTF world championships, the ITF International Demonstration Team will perform at two other locations, including Seoul, for a total of four shows. The proposed venues there, include the Kukkiwon. Hosting the demonstration in that iconic Taekwondo facility would be a further indication of the coming together of Tae Kwon Do, for the betterment of the global martial art community.
The ITF Secretary General, from his office in Vienna Austria, spoke about the great care the host WTF was taking to insure every possible detail to help make this historic GoodWill Tour a success. The ITF wishes to extend their sincere thanks and deep appreciation for the efforts of the WTF.
The internationalization of Taekwon-Do began in 1959, when the founder, General CHOI Hong-Hi led the Military Demo Team to Vietnam and Taiwan. As the ROK's first Ambassador to Malaysia in 1962, he used Taekwon-Do to get the Malaysian people to understand Korea and Korean culture. After he exiled to Canada in 1972 to escape political persecution of the military dictatorships in place back home, his ITF began to lose support. Later in 1980 he led the 7th ITF Demo Team to north Korea where it introduced the original Taekwon-Do developed initially in the south Korean Army.
General Choi's outspoken and high profile criticism of the dictatorships ruling back in Se
oul, caused a lot of trouble for south Korean Taekwon-Do Instructors living overseas. Grandmaster Jung Woo-Jin, who co-founded TKD Times Magazine, was once such person. He came to admire General Choi when he was a young soldier serving in the ROK Army. Grandmaster Jung was so impressed by what he read about General Choi's Taekwon-Do in the 1966 ROK Army Taekwon-Do Manual, especially the Tenets of Taekwon-Do that General Choi wrote about.
After serving combat duty and teaching Taekwon-Do in Vietnam, Grandmaster Jung returned to Korea and later emigrated to the USA, settling in Cedar Rapids Iowa. He would go onto establish many successful DoJangs and other businesses in America. In the early 1970s he saw a notice in a Korean-American newspaper about an upcoming tournament in Chicago, a several hours drive from Iowa. Grandmaster Jung made the ride to attend and it was there he first met General Choi. He was very impressed with his Taekwon-Do.
In the 1980s when General Choi finished writing his 15 Volume Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do, the pressure by the dictatorship back home, via the long arm of the infamous KCIA, prevented anyone from publishing or printing them. In 1985 it was Grandmaster Jung that ignored the warnings and threats of the dictatorship and printed the books. This of course was paid back by pressure put on him, his family and labeling him in ways to destroy his good name. Grandmaster Jung acted only for the interest of Taekwon-Do.
This courageous undertaking by Grandmaster Jung brought him closer to General Choi. While Grandmaster Jung is not a political person, he is a Taekwon-Do Pioneer that has never forgotten his meager beginnings in life. His success in life was directly attributed to his sharing of Taekwon-Do, Korea's greatest gift, with his adopted home in Iowa, USA. As a prominent business man, he has always given back to his community. He came quickly to believe in the power of Taekwon-Do as a soft political tool. After all, he saw it first hand when a young soldier serving his beloved Country of Korea in the Vietnam War.
The year 1989 saw the first time an American team compete in north Korea. The U.S. Team was led by George Vitale, an ITF International Instructor from Brooklyn, NYC. George was a long time student of ITF Master Kim Kwang-Sung of KwangJu, Korea. Grandmaster Kim had been a Pioneer that introduced Taekwon-Do to Germany in the 1960s. Mr. Vitale served as the Vice President of the U.S. Taekwon-Do Federation, part of the ITF since its was formed in Seoul Korea back in 1966. During this historic event General Choi told George, now that the U.S. Team has come to Pyongyang, we need to have a north Korean go to America.
The Korean Taekwon-Do Committee in Pyongyang, under the ITF, won the rights to host the 1992 ITF World Championships. The ITF was now headquartered in Vienna Austria, in order to take advantage of Austria's policy of political neutrality, during the Cold War era. Grandmaster Jung attended the championship. He had already been working on helping General Choi's TKD Diplomacy to bring a north Korean team to the USA.
|▲ © Grandmaster Jung woo-jin (WTU) (WTU)
Grandmaster Jung made history in 2007, when he hosted the Chosun ITF Demonstration
Team from Pyongyang on a GoodWill tour of the USA. It marked the first time there was ever any cultural exchange with north Korea of this type and magnitude. Grandmaster Jung led the team as they toured from the Pacific west coast to the east coast of the Atlantic. Along the way, the team did not only perform in major cities like Los Angles, San Francisco and Atlanta, but middle America cities of Cedar Rapids Iowa and Louisville Kentucky.
A lot of the travel was by Team bus, where they saw up close the heartland of America. They also toured historic landmarks, geographical wonders, visited the homes of Americans, ate fast food and home cooked meals. The north Korean team saw much of America and experienced a wide range of typical American culture. This was repeated in 2011, when he led the team with some repeat visitors and many new performers to northeast region performing in Boston, New York City and the Philadelphia metro area.
|▲ © ITF International Demonstration Team (WTU)
TKD Times and Grandmaster Jung have used the Publisher's Page and opinion pieces over the years to help encourage cooperation between the ITF and WTF. It is obvious that if the two major TKD bodies can work closer together, the entire global TKD community will benefit. So after 17 years of working to get a north Korean team to visit the USA and decades of trying to motivate the ITF and WTF towards reconciliation, Grandmaster Jung will tour with the ITF International Demonstration Team as an honored VIP when they perform at the 2017 WTF World Championships at the wonderful new Taekwondowon in Muju, Korea.
|▲ © General Choi Honghi the founder of ITF was selected as a hall of fame and his bronze face has been exhibited at Taekwondowon (WTU)
Grandmaster Jung has Dan certificates from both the Kukkiwon and the ITF. While he is an Independent Tae Kwon Do man, his ITF certificate was for the highest level, 9th Dan Black Belt. He was the last of only seven people in the entire world to have this distinction from the ITF under founder General Choi, when he was still alive. Grandmaster Jung, a poor farm boy from Ulsan Korea, who moved to Cedar Rapids, American farmland, has been one of the leading advocates globally in using Taekwon-Do to bring peace between the 2 Koreas, his birthplace and between north Korea and his adopted home of America.
TKD Times' motto = Uniting The World Through Martial Arts
General Choi's Last Seminar
Dr. George Vitale’s fascination with the fighting arts began with Western systems as a youngster with boxing, spurred on by his Father’s interest. As a teen he trained in Wrestling, competing locally in both. His introduction to the Eastern Arts began with an exposure to Tang Su Do. Thereafter he enrolled in Taekwon-Do under the tutelage of Master Kim Kwang-Sung (K-7-45) at ITF Main Gym #21 in the early 1970s. Grandmaster Kim born in Gwangju, Korea was originally from the Moo Duk Kwan and was a Taekwon-Do Pioneer in West Germany. Dr. Vitale’s extensive involvement in Taekwon-Do saw him traveling nationally since 1984 and internationally since 1987. To date he has been to over 70 countries pursuing his love for Taekwon-Do, as a student, teacher, researcher and producer. His main area of interest is the history of Taekwon-Do. He is currently involved in 3 documentaries and writing a book on the subject. The Graduate School work he has done since 1993 has culminated in his earning an academic Doctorate Degree from north Korea, the first American to ever do so. As a result of the expertise he has developed over the decades he is often invited to share his experiences with various institutions and media outlets. Master Vitale is happy to have the opportunity to now share with followers of this website.
조지 비탈 박사는 아버지의 권유로 어렸을 때 서양 격투기인 복싱을 시작했다. 십대에는 레슬링도 배웠고 두 격투기로 지역 대회에 나갔었다. 당수도를 통하여 처음 동양 무술을 시작했다. 1970년도 초 그의 당수도장은 ITF 주요도장(번호 21)이었으며, 김광성씨가 그의 사범 이었다. 김사범은 광주출신이며 무덕관 계열 이었으며 독일에 태권도 보급 초창기 사범이기도 했다. 태권도에 대한 흥미 때문에 비탈리박사는 1984년부터 미국 전역을 돌아 다녔고 1987년 이후 부터는 전 세계를 태권도 여행하였다. 현재까지 학생, 선생, 연구자 그리고 제작자로서 70개국 이상을 다녔다. 그의 관심 있는 부분은 태권도 역사이다. 그는 태권도 역사에 관하여 최근 3편의 다큐멘트리와 저술을 하고 있다. 1993년 미국인으로서 최초 북한에서 명예박사학위를 받았다. 이런 전문성 때문에 많은 단체나 언론에서 초청을 하고 있다. 비탈 박사는 이 홈페이지 팔로워들과 의견 나누는 것을 행복하게 생각한다.
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D) 2011 Sports Science/Physical Education (TKD)
박사학위 취득 2011 스포츠 과학/체육교육(태권도)
Master of Arts (M.A.) 1997 Criminal Justice
석사 취득 1997년 형법
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) 2012 History
학사학위 2012 역사 전공
Bachelor of Science (B.S.) 1984 Police Science
학사학위 1984년 경찰학
Associate of Arts (A.A.) 2011 Liberal Studies
준 학사학위 2011 자유학
Associate of Science (A.S.) 1979 Security Administration
준 학사학위 1979년 안전행정
TAEKWON-DO HIGHLIGHTS: 태권도 경력
ITF Order – Outstanding Contributions 2015
ITF 훈장 - 2015년 공로상
Tri-States Icons Martial Arts Hall of Fame 2015
2015년 3개주 무예 명예의 전당
Taekwondowon Contribution to Globalization 2014
2014년 태권도 국제화에 공헌상
Kukkiwon Outstanding Contribution & Dedication 2014
2014 국기원 공헌과 헌신상
U.S. Grandmasters’ Society Peace Award 2013
2013년 미국고단자회 상 수상
International Hall of Fame World Peace & Outstanding Research 2012
2012 국제평화 & 연구 명예의 전당
TaeKwonDo Times Master of the Year 2011
태권타임즈 2011년 그랜드 마스터
Coordinator USA-DPRK Goodwill Tour 2011
2011 미국-북한 친선 투어 코디네이터
TaeKwonDo Times Ambassador of the Year 2010
태권타임즈 2010년 대사
WTF Outstanding Contributions 2010
2010년 WTF 공로상
VIII Dan (8th Degree) A-8-14(b) 2009
2009년 8단 승단(ITF)
Official Taekwondo Hall of Fame 2009
2009년 태권도 명예의 전당
Coordinator USA-DPRK Goodwill Tour 2007
2007 미국-북한 친선 투어 코디네이터
Cuba Taekwon-Do Goodwill Mission 2004
2004 쿠바 태권도 친선 대사
Supported USANTF 2002
2002년 전미국태권도협회(ITF 단체) 지지
Completed Numerous Research Papers on Traditional MAs & Juvenile Delinquency 1997
1997년 전통적 무예와 청소년범죄 관련한 연구 논문들 작성
Vice President USTF 1990
1990 미국태권도협회(ITF) 부회장
Director ITF 1988
1990 미국태권도협회(ITF) 이사
ITF International Instructor #404 1987
1987년 ITF 국제사범(404번)
ITF International Class “A” Umpire 1987
1987년 ITF 국제 “A” 클래스
Graduate #9 of 5th ITF International Instructors Course 1987
1987년 제5회 ITF 국제사범연수과정 수료
Taekwon-Do Instructor 1977 to Present
1977~ 태권도 사범
New York State Police 1981 to 2005
NYC Youth Counselor 1977 to 1981
1977~1981 뉴욕 청소년 카운슬러
Lifetime Member – ITF & USTF
평생회원 ITF & USTF
Member – Korea Society (New York City)
뉴욕 한인회 회원
Member – National Committee on North Korea (Washington D.C.)
워싱턴 북한 위원회 회원
Member – Amateur Athletic Union (Albany, NY)
뉴욕 알바니 아마추어 선수협회 회원
Member – World History Association
Member – American Historical Association
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