News & Events

2022 Greeting to the AUSKF members

I was elected to be the 2022-2024 AUSKF president at the November 12, 2021, AUSKF BOD Meeting. I will do my best to honor this opportunity. Under the current COVID conditions, we will seek better situations for Kendo, Iaido, and Jodo activities. I believe there are ways we will make the most of this time, to lead our activities in a good direction. Let’s go through this hard time together. (Shinobu Maeda)

Happy New Year! I am honored to serve another term for AUSKF, this time as the executive vice president. It has been very difficult two years since the Covid-19 pandemic started, but I am glad to see that most dojos resumed regular practice by the end of last year. The emergence of Omicron variant is raising another concern worldwide. It seems to be very contagious but probably less lethal, compared with other variants, such as Delta. We may see more variants emerge, and we need to be alert on new information, take usual precautions, appropriate countermeasures, and get vaccinated if you can. Our goal is to provide safe and enjoyable environment to practice kendo for all our members. All the AUSKF board members are volunteers, donating our time and effort for the members. We do what we can, and please be willing to contribute for our federation as well. Hope to see you at national as well as regional events this year. Let us stand together and build bright future for AUSKF. (Michio Kajitani)

Happy Holidays to everyone.

2022 will be a great year for Kendo; I will do my part to accomplish this goal. As your newly elected VP of Promotion, my committee members, Seiji Mamiya, Mike Jao, and Ken Tamura and I will do our best to accommodate everyone’s needs. Please stay healthy and continue kendo safely. Hope to see everyone soon. (Yuji Onitsuka)

My name is Hayato Okawa and I have been elected to be in charge of education (VP) for AUSKF. As the pandemic increases in magnitude and it is still yet uncertain how many seminars and events we can host, I will to the best of my ability fulfill my duty as the head of education and help to develop kendo in the United States. I’m looking forward to meeting everyone in person and I’m hoping we can meet swords in Keiko. Thank you! (Hayato Okawa)

Dear AUSKF Regional Presidents, Senseis and Kenshi:

I would like to start by wishing everyone a Happy New Year. I was elected the new AUSKF Vice President of Competition at the AUSKF Board meeting in November. I am thankful to also have the support of my committee members Doug Imanishi Sensei, Kenny Song Sensei and Jarrod Hatakeyama Sensei. I am taking over this role from Yuji Onitsuka Sensei and have big shoes to fill. Onitsuka Sensei did a fantastic job in holding the AUSKF Federation-Zone Referee Seminars, Junior National Championships and AUSKF Championships. There remain many uncertainties with COVID, but our committee will do our very best to fulfill our duties and responsibilities. We humbly ask for your patience and understanding as we traverse these times.

The first order of busy for the New Year will be the Junior National Championships. It is still uncertain whether or not we can proceed with the tournament this year, but we will do everything we can to make it happen. We are tentatively looking at June or July to hold this tournament. We also plan on conducting a few of the Federation-Zone Referee Seminars this year, but that schedule will be announced at a later time.

Lastly, please let me know if you (or your federation) have any thoughts or ideas for improvement. I will discuss them with my committee and will take them into consideration in our planning for the next few years. (Brandon Harada)

I am honored to serve as Treasurer of the AUSKF Board for the second term. I will also continue to be in charge of the AUSKF memberships and work with our IT and membership admin team members. Please feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or concerns regarding your AUSKF membership. I will do my best to serve all of the AUSKF members and improve our membership renewal process. I will be looking forward to working with you.

Wishing you a safe and happy 2022 year! (Keiko Umemura)

Continuing from last year, I will be working for the AUSKF. My responsibility for 2022-2024 will be auditing and Insurance

/Risk management committee. The committee will work hard with Douglas Imanishi sensei and Brandon Harada sensei, so please feel free to contact us at any time. We wish you a healthy and peaceful year. (Seiji Mamiya)

My name is Norman Otani, and I have been elected to serve as the 2022-2024 Secretary-Historian for the 2022-2024 AUSKF board of directors. I am looking forward to an exciting and challenging three (3) years ahead, as the 2022-2024 AUSKF board of directors must work hard to restart all of the past efforts to once again have competition, education and promotion events for kendo, iaido and jodo. (Norman Otani)

The new COVID variants affecting our daily lives and restricting sport activities, it is for sure a very challenging time to be an officer. But I felt that there is no better time to give something back to AUSKF. I will be leading the IT committee for the next three years. We have a very capable team. I am looking forward to simplifying the AUSKF administration processes and improving the front-end experience for the AUSKF members and the future to-be members. If you have any questions of suggestions, please feel free to contact me at Looking forward to a great 2022! (Taro Ariga)

2021 has been another challenging year, but I am excited to finally get back to practice and am looking forward to seeing everyone at AUSKF events this year. Please stay safe and healthy! (Danny Yang)

It is my distinct honor to serve as an AUSKF director. I am new to this role but will do my best to support US kendo and our members. I also look forward to seeing many of you as AUSKF events resume. Please accept my sincere hope that each of you stays healthy and safe and that you can continue training. (Doug Imanishi)

It is my pleasure and honor to serve the AUSKF as a Board member as well as the Education Committee member. With the guidance from Okawa sensei, I will try to be creative, bring new ideas, and make educational events seamless and successful. Happy New Year and I hope 2022 is filled with hope for better, safe, and healthy days for all kendokas!! (Henry Lee)

Happy New Year to all - I hope everyone is having a safe and healthy 2022. I am very excited to be elected to the AUSKF Board of Directors (BoD) for the 2022-2024 term. As a first-time member of the AUSKF BoD, my goal is to both learn from and humbly build upon the successes of all of the current and previous leaders of AUSKF. For the next few years, I will be joining Brandon Harada Sensei as a member of the Competition Committee and Taro Ariga Sensei as a member of the IT Committee. I’m looking forward to supporting both them and the rest of the BoD as we plan and execute on our various AUSKF programs and events. Finally, I’d like to ask for your patience as I settle into this new role during the unique set of circumstances presented by the current COVID situation. Thank you for your vote of confidence as well as your support for the next few years. (Jarrod Hatakeyama)

My name is Kenneth Song, and I have been elected to serve for the 2022-2024 AUSKF board of directors. I am looking forward to an exciting and challenging three (3) years ahead, as the 2022-2024 AUSKF board of Competition Committee member. I will do my best to support AUSKF and members. Happy New Year!! I wish you a healthy and peaceful year. (Kenneth Song)

Happy New Year! Wishing everyone has a healthy, safe, and strong 2022! (Mike Jao)

I am very honored to be able to serve as a board member of the AUSKF. As part of the education committee, we will organize seminars to help develop and promote kendo in the United States. I look forward to meeting and doing keiko with you at upcoming AUSKF events. (Shuntaro Shinada)

My name is Ken Tamura and it is an honor to serve as AUSKF BOD for the first time. I have been assigned as a member of the AUSKF Promotion Committee and SEUSKF VP for Promotion. I am hoping to contribute to provide safe and smooth experiences for promotion exams and related seminars. (Ken Tamura)

COVID-19 Alert

Dear presidents of AUSKF member federations,

Please distribute to your members.

I had a brief conversation with our president, Maeda sensei, regarding Covid-19 situation. As most of you are aware, Omicron variant is spreading quite fast and daily case is sky rocketing as you can see on the first image. This variant seems to be relatively less lethal, but severe illness and death are reported. Even after full vaccination, it seems to cause 'break through' infection. However, the vaccine still seems to show protective effect against severe illness and death. The third dose 'booster shots' are highly recommended as long as you can take it.

The attached images are downloaded from CDC.

The first image shows far greater number of cases reported than ever before.

The second image shows the number of deaths that is roughly half of what it was a year ago, the worst time we had.

The third image shows it is affecting all over the USA.

Considering the current situation, AUSKF recommends refraining from participating in non-essential activities including Kendo, Iaido, and Jodo for the next two weeks or so, and re-evaluate. The first Omicron alert was reported to WHO on November 24, 2021, and cases in the USA have been reported since early December 2021. The holiday season traveling and gathering might have contributed to this surge. Hopefully it will end by February.

We are quite concerned about this situation and would like you to be aware of these data so we can help our members stay safe during this difficult time.

Thank you,

Michio Kajitani


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