our staff





belt progress & requirements

starter program

black belt exam

belt exams

ist & tournaments

career opportunities

class schedules

affiliated schools

DePalma's Team USA Martial Arts  480 892-3949

Black Belt Exam

Dear Black Belts and Black/Red Belts,

What a Black Belt cycle. Watching so many get all the required classes in and still have time for summer vacations. That is dedication! I really liked seeing the pictures posted on our FB pages of students practicing while traveling.

This exam was different. Our students had the oppurtunigy to test or be certified at their current rank in front of Grandmaster Tony Cogliandro. Below we wrote (Grandmaster Exam) after the student’s names who took this exam. It was awesome! I was so overly pleased at how well this group performed to represent our school and their instructors that we didn’t require any of them to come back and do anymore of the regular exam. Their skills demonstrated what we teach and was and still is being talked about in the Kenpo world. Be proud of where you train, I am.

Besides the wonderful job of all our students and the leadership of our instructors. It was my honor to have my highest-ranking student, Master Jeff Wilber, be promoted to the rank of 7th Degree Black Belt. Master Wilber has been my first student to receive 5th, 6th and now 7th Degree Black Belt from our organization.

Names found below are ones who have passed this exam and will be graduating to the next rank.

We look forward to seeing all of you on the next one in April for our next exam!

All times are listed below for the next exam.

As you know there is a lot expected of you on this exam. If you practice hard and keep your attendance up to 3 times a week your exam will seem to be easier. Remember this is your black belt exam and you will be expected to do things that may not be listed here.

This Black Belt Cycle we will be working on:
  • 1 TEAM Kata with your school
  • Under 1st Degree Kata – TBA
  • Past kata – 2 of them
  • 1st Degree and Up Kata – TBA
  • Self-Defense – Techniques List BA – IA – AA .
  • Written Exam will be on “The Way Of The Champion” by Jerry Lynch

Dates and times may change. Check with your instructor or check this page for updated information.

Kyoshi F. DePalma

Due Dates & Times

Exam Applications/Belt Fee – November 20, 2017
Must be in full uniform for all parts of the Exam!
All parts of the Exam from Sparring to Graduation must be attended to qualify and receive a blet.

Pre-Exam - Push-Ups, Sit-Ups, Pull-Ups, Bag Kick & Breaking

Mesa, Scottsdale & Surprise Schools
Monday, March 5, 2018 - 7:30 PM (location Desert Mountain School NEC of Via Linda/136th)

Gilbert & Queen Creek Schools
Wednesday, March 7, 2018 - 7:30 PM (location South Gilbert School NEC Lindsay/Pecos)

Run – All schools April 7, 2018 - 8:00 am, South Gilbert School

All who competed at 3 AZMARRS Rated events in 2 black belt division each (sparring & forms, weapons or musical) Between 10/21/2017 and 4/7/2018 and qualify to skip the run, need not show up for it. Visit www.AZMARRS.com for tournament listings.
Please check with your instructor to see if you qualify to skip anything!

Sparring – March 3, 2018 - 7:00 am at AZ Open Karate Tournament).

Basics – April 7, 2018 - 10:00 am @ South Gilbert School – located on the NEC of Lindsay/Pecos

(What time is the lunch break? After the basic portion of the exam! ? We don’t know how long the basic portion will last. We will finish it when we see everything we need to see. A note will be put on the South Gilbert Facebook page to notify when we are getting close to break.)

Kata – April 7, 2018 - After a lunch break @ South Gilbert School

Self-Defense – April 7, 2018 - after 15 min. break from kata @ South Gilbert School

Graduation – April 21, 2018, 5:00 PM – location TBA – Graduation must be attended to receive a new belt.

Exam Fee is due at the beginning of your Pre-Exam. Fee is $25.00 cash and must be paid to your Instructor. **Re-Test Pre-Exam will have an additional $50.00 charge. March 28, 2018 7:30 PM at South Gilbert**

Kata Scoring & Breaking

On your exam you will have to perform two kata of your choice. You are scored by the examining board on a scale of 0 - 3, 3 being the highest. If you perform a kata of the beginner level the highest you can score is a 2, if you perform a kata from the intermediate level the highest you can score is a 2.5, from the advanced level the highest you can score a 2.75 and from the black belt level a 3.

Breaking will be done either at the Pre-Exam

On the Black Belt Brochure mailed out there is a typo of age to board. It should read:
Blue/Brown Board – 10 & Under
Brown Board – 10 - 12
Black Board – 13 & Up

The above are suggestions. Your Instructor may challenge you to do higher. Train for the challenge
Age 10 is in two categories and decided by the instructor.

All ranks must have attended 50 regular classes and 30 sparring classes between November 6, 2017 & April 7, 2018

Students Who Passed BBE October 2017

Exam rehearsals will be held with your Head Instructor. Check with your school for dates, times & locations. Click here to visit our School Calendars

To E-mail your instructor please go to the “locations” page.

Students graduating must arrive at Mesquite Jr. High School, Gilbert 5:00 PM for an all school rehearsal.

Black Belt Graduation: Mesquite Jr. High School, Gilbert - Saturday, November 4, 2017 - Doors Open 5:30 PM, Show begins at 5:45 PM

"Failure is the opportunity to begin again, more intelligently."
-- Henry Ford, Founder of the Ford Motor Company

Please see your instructor for a bio form. This must be filled out and emailed to your instructor no later than the Wednesday before Graduation. Only the bio form from the instructor can be used.

The below names are not in any particular order of score.

1st Grade Black Belt:
Siva Bubby
Olivia Scott
Gaetano Greco
Kaitlyn Garay
Aiden McCallister
Cameron Hartman
Ram Bubby
Mckenna Davis
Lealand Danner
Vishwa Balamurugan
William Robinson
Emily Sanchez
Grantham Smith
Nate Crooks
Tyler Iancu

2nd Grade Black Belt:
Mariana Aguilar
Peyton Taylor
Anthony Barone
Chloe Hom
Nigel Mugo
Austin Bolstad
Corrine Niaura
Braven Velasco
Noelle Hom
Shekeina Rigrish (Iowa Exam)

3rd Grade Black Belt:
David Francoeur
Marco Aguinaldo
Devon Olson
Eiven Mugo
Emme Velasco (Grandmaster Exam)
Louis Velasco (Grandmaster Exam)
Stillman Schneider (Grandmaster Exam)
David Mincks
Wyatt Calantog
Ethan Gohn

4th Grade Black Belt:
Adrian Ciotinga
Johnny Pisani
Logan Scrima
Sedona Ashton
Braedon Thomas
Katie Yokoyama
Matthew Layne (Grandmaster Exam)
Briggs Pritts
Ethyn Terhune
Xavier Arnett
Julian Sanchez

5th Grade Black Belt:
Davis Lobb
Vincent Trocchio
Ben Kuzmich
Hayley Rhorer
Charlyse Wapniarski (Grandmaster Exam)
Jenna Brilon (Grandmaster Exam)
Sarah Collins (Grandmaster Exam)

1st Degree Black Belt:
Samuel deJong
Jake Tangeman (Grandmaster Exam)
Kira McDavid
Johnathan Kitowski
JD deWaard
Joshua Hori
Luke Brewington
Ryan Jee
Mason Faust (2nd Jr. Level)
Christopher Manuel (2nd Jr. Level)
Cassie Scrima (4th Jr. Level) (Grandmaster Exam)
Emma Fredrickson (2nd Level)
Zak Hori (2nd Level)
Fernando Garcia Jr. (2nd Level)
Bryson Leonard (2nd Level)
Nicole Hart (2nd Level)
Callie Gregory (2nd Level)

2nd Degree Black Belt:
Joshua Culbreath
Emily Fredrickson
Dagger DePalma - Certified (Grandmaster Exam)
Stephen Stewart (3rd Level) (Grandmaster Exam)

3rd Degree Black Belt:
Mason Waaler
Jordon DePalma (2nd Level) (Grandmaster Exam)

5th Degree Black Belt:
Henry Calantog - Certified (Grandmaster Exam)
Casey Wisniewski - Certified (Grandmaster Exam)
Albert Lindsey - Certified (Grandmaster Exam)

7th Degree Black Belt:
Jeff Wilber (Grandmaster Exam)

 photo Bio sheet_zpsdy8uaqyh.jpg