Kevin Thompson was born in Newark, NJ in 1961. He was raised in the heart and soul of the Ghetto or the “hood”. He has trained for over 40 years, first informally with his brother Mylo Thompson when he was five years old, then later when he turned 7 his formal training began. This was provided by Karriem Abdullah (Al-Mu-Assis) of the K.A. System. Kevin began teaching karate at the age of 10. He opened his first Dojo, the Shakil’s School of Martial Arts in 1981, in Newark, when he was only 19 years old.
During the 1980’s, Kevin was a member of the first ever professionally sponsored national karateteam “Budweiser National Karate Team”, which was coached by senseis Chuck Merriman and Skipper Ingram. He retired from the John Paul Mitchell National Karate team in 2012, where he held the position of team captain and competed in all three categories of competition, Kata,Weapons and Fighting. With his team, Kevin travelled around the world, exhibiting his system of Karate-Do’, He is humbly grateful for this opportunity.
Kevin was inducted into the U.S. Professional Karate Headquarters’ Hall of Fame in 1982 and the original Black Belt Hall of Fame in 1989. He shares this honor with such people as Chuck Norris and Bruce Lee.
During the course of his martial arts career, Kevin has won over 10,000 trophies, the majority of which are first place and grand championship awards. He has competed in and won at almost every major tournament in NYC and nationwide, and has travelled throughout the world competing, and giving seminars and performances on his martial arts concepts. Kevin’s face and form has even been displayed on the covers of many major magazines in the U.S. and Europe.
On the National and International circuits, they call him the “Total Package”, because he does it all! Kevin is the only male competitor to have won all three titles as Grand Champion in a nationally ranked tournament. This was accomplished through his defeating Nasty Anderson for the title in fighting, and Hosang Pak for the title in kata, and Mike Bernardo for the title in weapons at the Montreal Nationals in Canada. This previously unheard of feat, led him to receive the Triple Crown Winner Award from the Professional Karate League in 1989.
Kevin is a graduate of Newark Tech., and later Bloomfield College, where he earned his B.S. degree in Marketing. He has over 25 years of experience in education, where he worked primarily as a Crisis Intervention Specialist. Kevin completed his masters’ degree in Administration and Supervision in Secondary Education at Fordham University in New York City. Soon after receiving his masters’ degree, he took the Principal’s Examination to earn his Principal License for the N.J. Department of Education (2008). He later became a Vice Principal at Barringer High School, where he teamed his expertise and disciplinary skills, with other skilled education administrators, to help turn Barringer around, and produce the most improved school in the district.