Hogberg, Shephard inducted into USA Martial Arts HOF
By LYNETTE SOWELL
Jimmy Hogberg and Roosevelt Shephard, two local martial arts masters and instructors, were inducted into the USA Martial Arts Hall of Fame at a banquet held in Fort Worth on August 18.
The recognition is given annually to martial arts masters throughout the country who are nominated for their impact in the martial arts community and beyond.
Hogberg is the owner of Self Defense America, located in Cove Terrace Shopping Center. He has been a martial arts instructor for more than 20 years and began studying martial arts when he was nine years old.
“It was 1984, the year the Karate Kid came out, but that was a coincidence, Hogberg said. “I wanted to be Chuck Norris.”
In addition to teaching martial arts, Hogberg uses Self Defense America as a platform to volunteer in the community.
“We have started a new Kick Out movement against drugs, disease, and hate,” Hogberg said. “We also help the Pink Warrior Angels, participated in the Kick Cancer’s Butt Kick-A-Thon, and more.” Hogberg and his students have also given martial arts demonstrations at community events.
Over the more than two decades in business, Hogberg estimates he’s seen about 2,000 students come through the doors and points to the life lessons that students can learn.
“A lot of it is, people want to feel a part of a group, so if you do martial arts, you’re part of a positive group, and you have a positive sense of belonging. It can give you confidence to already feel good about yourself to say no to things like drugs, or not needing to start fights to feel good about yourself.”
Shephard owns Path of Harmony Martial Arts in Lampasas and is also an educator for the Copperas Cove Independent School District. His school offers classes as well, along summer camps and events for families. Both schools have also combined forces for events together.
Other regional Hall of Fame recognitions are set for Orlando, Kansas City, and Seattle.
The USA Martial Arts Hall of Fame was founded in 1976 by martial arts Grand Master Robert Trias, in Phoenix, Ariz. The group has grown to a nationwide membership of martial arts masters who according to its website, “live, eat, and dream of the arts.”
The group is led by Grand Master Jim Thomas, Ph.D./D.Sc./Ma.Dsc., CEO of U.S.A. Martial Arts and who has been a head coach of the U.S. National Martial Arts Team.