Kayla Harrison, Two Time Olympic Champion, Receives Rokudan

RIO DE JANEIRO —  American Kayla Harrison has another gold medal. Call it one more for the road. Expected to retire following these Olympics and become the next female star in professional mixed martial arts, Harrison defeated France’s Audrey Tcheumeo to win a second judo gold medal in the 78-kilogram weight class in front of a disappointed Brazilian crowd that was hoping to watch Harrison take on Mayra Aguiar.

Harrison, 26, had predicted a matchup with Aguiar more than a year ago as the two have been longtime rivals and had split their first 14 meetings. It would have recalled echoes of 2012, when she beat Britain’s Gemma Gibbons in London in the gold medal match. Instead, she faced Tcheumeo and did not seem to be getting the best of the action until the final seconds when she finally got Tcheumeo on the ground for a decisive win by ippon.

Harrison rolled into the semifinals, defeating Anamari Velensek of Slovenia in 1 minute, 43 seconds with an armbar move that immediately ended the match. Her earlier matches weren’t any longer, confirming her dominance in this tournament.

– Dan Wolken, USA TODAY Sports, 8/11/16

When Kayla Harrison returned home with two Olympic gold medals she had something special waiting for her. On August 31st the United States Judo Association’s promotion board had decided to reward Harrison with the rank of Rokudan, sixth degree black belt. The USJA promotion board, comprised of multiple Olympians, decided this not only on her competitive prowess but her embodiment of the principles of Judo. The United States Judo Association is proud to promote Kayla Harrison to Rokudan and support her as one of the best ambassadors of our art.


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Passing of Michelle Holtze

From USJA President John Paccione “I am sorry to announce that I received word that USJA Board of Directors Officer Michelle Holtze has passed on. I will forward more information as it becomes available.”

Posted in Announcements, News, Uncategorized

Customized E-mail

This week the United States Judo Association would like to highlight our new customized email preferences!

You can change your email preferences simply by logging into www.usja.net with your username and password. Once you arrive at your Dashboard, locate and click the “My Profile” button in the top right of the screen. This will take you to your personal page.

In the profile detail box click the “Edit Info” button near the bottom of the table. From here you can edit your personal information. To continue to the customized email preferences keep scrolling down until you reach the “Notifications” section.

You can select what type of events you’d like to stay updated on: Tournaments, Camps, Clinics, Scrimmages, and Other. You can also select the states you’d like to receive the notifications from. This way you can stay up to date on regional events near you. If you want to be notified of all events across the country to see what’s going on, simply keep all the boxes checked.

We hope you enjoy our new features. Our goal is to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of our system. This benefits our members and coaches by providing quick and convenient solutions to help minimize excess work. We appreciate everything our members and coaches do for us. Stay tuned to see more of our upcoming features!


The United States Judo Association


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National Honor Society

We have an exciting announcement!
We place high value on education, both on and off the mat. To show how much education means to us, we have partnered up with the National Honor Society to provide free membership to all of our honor students. We are proud to recognize and reward our members who have put time and effort into their studies.

To qualify for the free membership, all you need to do is attach a copy of your National Honor Society certificate (http://www.nhs.us) to your membership application form and you will receive a full year of free membership with the United States Judo Association.



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Life Member Package

Dear Members:

On behalf of the staff and volunteers of “your” United States Judo association, we wish you all a Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year.

Over the past year, many of our members have asked about a reduced Life Member package and we are pleased to bring back the very popular package that we extended last year.

If you chose a Life Membership before your current membership expires, we will extend the first year of your Life Membership to the new date of you application. In addition, you will be covered by the USJA’s liability policy and the excess medical insurance policy. Life Membership requires an annual sustaining life membership payment of $30.00 per year, after the first year in order to keep the membership active; that is a 40% annual savings for life.

You can also choose to buy the life Membership for $245.00, which will then include the new USJA Senior Guide (a $50.00 value) in the final bound editions. The Guide is the essential requirement for USJA senior rank information and promotion that every senior member and every instructor must have.


To take advantage of this offer please call us during our office hours!

Office Hours: 9am-5pm EST

NY: (516) 366-3311

FL: (727) 937-7120

CA: (213) 260-9200


For question please contact:  support@usja.net


Thank You,

Marc Cohen
USJA President

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CDC Concussion Training

USJA’s liability insurance company is asking every instructor, assistant instructor, indeed all persons who assume some oversight or trai ning responsibility (eg. Black belts) should take the U.S. Center for Disease Control’s free on line COACHES training at http://www.cdc.gov/headsup/youthsports/.
The on line course takes between 30 and 45 minutes to complete followed by a short quiz. When you finish the training you will be able to complete an easy test and after successful completion, download and print a Certificate of Completion. Please send a copy of that certificate to the national office by fax or email (you can also send a copy through the post office).
I have asked Mike Szrejter and Ed Thibedou of the Coach Education to take immediate steps to include the CDC Heads up training in all future Level 1 training classes in order to comply with this very serious issue.
Marc Cohen
USJA President

Posted in News

Pan American Games

On November 5th and 6th 2015 USA Judo brought 46 competitors to Cordoba Argentina to compete in the Infantile Pan American Games and then competed in The South American Continental Championship on November 7th. In order to qualify to compete, you had to be ranked # 1 or 2 in the country in your division.

Erica Paccione of Kodokan Judo of Cape Coral is ranked # 1 in the Nation in her division Juvinile A 58- Kilograms competed in this Event and then competed on Saturday the November 7th in The South American Continental Championship.

Erica fought 4 times on Friday the 6th defeating 2 of her opponents with a half point on the throw and then a half point on the hold to equal a full point. Erica Paccione placed third in The Pan American Games.

On Saturday Erica Defeated 2 of her opponents with Ippon on the throw and scored a Bronze Medal in this event as well. Out of the 46 competitors the USA scored 26 medals on behalf of the United States and Erica is proud to have represented her country.

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What is the USJA? by Marc Cohen

What is the USJA?


Like many of our members, I am a veteran of the USJA. Like most people my age, I began my study and association with judo in the early 1960s with the local Black Belt organization of the USJF. Through them I reached Yudanshi level and then moved to the USJA in 1981 along with my Judo club, 37 years ago.


I’ve had time to think about who and what the United States Judo Association is and wanted to share my perspective with all of you.


The USJA is principally a small nonprofit corporation that survives with the support of the members. Above all, we are a credentialing organization whose mission is to serve the membership and to develop and maintain standards. We accomplish this mission in a variety of ways under the agreed upon Bylaws of the organization. In this small snapshot of who and what we are, there are those of differing opinions about how the organization is run, but by keeping the definition in mind, it narrows the scope of what our overall mission should be.


In practical terms, we register members, issue appropriate ranks in Judo and Jujitsu, charter schools and sanction events. In addition, we maintain communication with our members and with the larger Judo community in the United States and throughout the world with emails, phone calls, website presence and social media.


We are a service organization and because of that we resolve issues and maintain a steady stream of correspondence and communications between the members and the professional staff.


In order to continue to function, we need to continuously monitor revenue streams to pay the expenses of the corporation including daily work, professional services and operating overhead. Although the overall governance of the organization is through a volunteer effort, we do maintain a staff of people who work through a vendor to initiate and maintain the data infrastructure of the corporation and offer one on one service to the members. The related expenses are a necessary cost of doing business and we constantly monitor the financial health of the corporation.


Make no mistake in thinking of the USJA as a small group like a Dojo, we are a business and we need to maintain the financial, physical and data integrity of our organization so that we can continue to offer the support and services that our members have come to expect.


When all is said and done, we will be the largest and best Judo organization in this country and arguably in the world. We will offer more services at reasonable costs and innovate the most modern technologies in order to accomplish our short and long term mission. We will, however honor our heritage and the history of Judo for the past 113 years and offer personal service and flexibility where and when needed.


The USJA is a strong and vibrant organization that will continue to grow with the demand of the times and the membership. We will be here for many decades to come doing what we can for the members and for Judo.




Marc Cohen

President, USJA

Posted in News

Concussion injuries

Concussion injuries are a top news story, but more importantly, concussions are a very serious health issue that impacts Judo. Our coach education courses does an excellent job making our coaches, students and parents aware of the consequences of concussion accidents, however not every dojo instructor , student or parent is certified though our Coach Certificate program.

In order to bring more attention to this serious issue, we would like to point your attention to the U.S. Center of Disease Control’s (CDC) informative on line offering of concussion information. The course is called Heads Up to Youth: Online Training and it discusses the cause, detection and appropriate actions taken if a potential or actual concussion injury occurs. The CDC course is informative and is a must for anyone involved in teaching or participating in Judo.

The CDC course is free to take and leads to a certificate upon the completion. We urge all members of the USJA to take advantage of this timely and important opportunity. You can go on to the CDC website and review, sign up and take the course at the following URL:


While the course is not mandatory at this time, it is possible that our insurance company will require every chartered club leader to become certified in the future as a condition of having the USJA charter your club.

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2014 Financial Statements

United States Judo Association
2014 Financial Commentary

Dear Members of the USJA:

The 2014 Financial Statements prepared by Wyckoff & Associates details much of what we already knew and expected: 2014 was a very difficult year for the USJA. Operating revenues for 2014 amounted to $480k, with combined costs of operating revenues and expenses amounting to $488k. Clearly, our expenses ballooned out of control, stemming mainly from payroll, which amounted to over +40% of our total operating expense. Thankfully, through personnel changes and cost cutting measures, we have made great strides towards improving the financial health of the USJA.

Since February, the USJA has reduced expenses, improved office efficiency, and regained lost revenue through an improved membership retention system. These efforts combined have allowed us to achieve cash on hand of almost $55k through the end of August, which is already an 8% increase over our year ending balance in December. So far, 2015 has been financially profitable and through continued focus on cost control and membership growth, the remainder of the year should prove to be successful.

As with any company experiencing significant change, our short term profitability this year may feel fragile. However, the underlying expense controls and overall management have afforded the USJA the ability to weather the ups and downs of everyday business. By following our improved business changes, the USJA is on track to have a great 2015 and beyond.


Mark Tamulionis
USJA – Treasurer

2014 USJA Financials Commentary

2014_1231 FS Signed USJA

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