On Saturday – July 29, 2017 Sensei Brian Pena was declared and confirmed as the Headmaster of Zen Shotokai Karate and Kobudo by Ms. Maria Kimmey, wife of the late O’Sensei Virgil Kimmey, 10th Degree Blackbelt (Judan) who passed away May 22 in the year of our Lord 2002 and was also at this time gifted O’Sensei Virgil Kimmey’s gold ring which was used as his personal seal for certificates and awards dating back over 50 years. This proclamation was acknowledged, confirmed, and blessed by O’Sensei Virgil Kimmey’s senior student since 1967, O’Sensei Mike Hess, 10th Degree Blackbelt (Judan), as well as Mr. Larry Bullard, Mr. Charles Burris, Mr. Sam Chapman, Mr. Bill Daniels, Mr. Jerome Johnson, Mr. Marty Knight, Mr. Danny McCall, Mr. Jerry Piddington, Mr. Ricky Smith, and Mr. Ricky Taylor.
On Thursday – November 1, 2018 Ms. Maria Kimmey and Sensei Brian Pena signed a legal ‘Consent and Authorization’ witnessed by O’Sensei Mike Hess and Ms. Allison Pena authorizing Sensei Brian Pena to affix the signature and seal of O’Sensei Virgil Kimmey and Maria Kimmey to certificates and other awards provided to his students who have obtained excellence in Zen Shotokai.
On Tuesday – December 29, 2020 Sensei Brian Pena was confirmed as an original practitioner of Zen Shotokai Karate and Kobudo under the Aihara, Kimmey, Hess, Pena Lineage by Ms. Mary Louise Aihara, wife of the late Kiyoshi Aihara and Jonn Aihara, son of the late Kiyoshi Aihara and given full legal consent and authorization to affix the name of Kiyoshi Aihara to certificates and other awards provided to his students who have obtained excellence in Zen Shotokai. This proclamation was acknowledged by O’Sensei Mike Hess, 10th Degree Blackbelt (Judan).
“For you see though, it’s not the rank or title that matters, but who signs your certificate – these are people that believe in you, and I feel honored that these incredible men and women believe in me. Thank you to everyone that pushes me to work hard every day to improve myself and my students.” – Sensei Brian Pena
Zen Shotokai Silver Dragon Pinnacle Warrior:
The Silver Dragon Pinnacle Warrior represents an inner circle of Family and Friends whose dedication of love, loyalty, and sincerity is the lifeblood of The Karate Dojo. The gratitude of this person’s friendship is immeasurable and will never be forgotten.
Sterling Silver Zen Shotokai Dragon pendants individually numbered starting at #001, as well as Certificates bestowed upon the recipient bearing the signature and seal of O’Sensei Mike Hess, Sensei Brian Pena, and Ms. Maria Kimmey will forever record their name in the history of Zen Shotokai Karate and Kobudo.
“Goodness is about character – integrity, honesty, kindness, generosity, moral courage, and the like. More than anything else, it is about how we treat other people.” – Dennis Prager
#000 – O’Sensei Mike Hess (3-3-20)
#001 – Allison Pena (4-1-20)
#002 – Carrissa Merchant (4-1-20)
#003 – Melissa Laskowski (4-1-20)
#004 – Marie Iniguez (4-1-20)
#005 – Shanoree Phillips (4-1-20)
#006 – Kelly Harnett (4-1-20)
#007 – Kristie Snelgrove (4-1-20)
#008 – Christy Jacobs (4-1-20)
#009 – Kimberly Dennis (4-1-20)
#010 – Brittany Pedings (4-1-20)
#011 – Mia Hebel (4-1-20)
#012 – Tessa Phillips (4-1-20)
#013 – Marie Waldrop (1-2-22)
#014 – Cathy Temple (1-2-22)
#015 – Alan Amick (1-2-22)
#016 – Courtenay Owen (1-2-22)
#017 – Tricia Stoner (1-2-22)
#018 – Cindy Padgett (3-26-22)
Zen Shotokai Black Widow:
The Black Widow was the logo in the mid-late 1960’s for O’Sensei Virgil Kimmey’s Dojo after his training in Moo Duk Kwan and prior to his training in Zen Shotokai. Sensei Brian Pena is in possession of one of the original Black Widow patches used by O’Sensei Virgil Kimmey in the mid-late 1960’s. With the blessings of O’Sensei Mike Hess (O’Sensei Kimmey’s senior active student) and Ms. Cathy Keith (O’Sensei Kimmey first female Blackbelt), effective December 2020 Sensei Brian Pena has decided to offer the Black Widow as an elite group within Zen Shotokai – of elite Mind, Body, and Spirit.
Zen Shotokai Black Widow members will be individually numbered starting at #001, as well as Certificates bestowed upon the recipient bearing the seal of O’Sensei Virgil Kimmey (RIP), as well as the signature and seal of Sensei Brian Pena, and will forever record their name in the history of Zen Shotokai Karate and Kobudo. Each Black Widow member will also be signified by having the official Zen Shotokai Black Widow embroidery on their Gi.
“There is nothing outside of yourself that can ever enable you to get better, stronger, richer, quicker, or smarter. Everything is within. Everything exists.” – Miyamoto Musashi
#001 – Allison Pena (12-14-20)
#002 – Gene Crawford (12-14-20)
#003 – Clint Merchant (12-14-20)
#004 – Noemie Iniguez (7-10-21)
#005 – Laney Pena (2-13-22)
#006 – Gabby Pena (2-13-22)
#007 – Christian Merchant (2-13-22)
#008 – Connor Merchant (2-13-22)
#009 – Thomas Crawford (2-13-22)
#010 – TamRon Bufford (2-13-22)
#011 – Mackenzie Laskowski (2-13-22)