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Tom Manelski

The New Jersey Martial Arts Hall of Fame is extremely proud of its third class of inductees to the New Jersey Martial Arts Hall of Fame. This class will be honored at the third dinner gala to be held at the beautiful La Quinta Inns& Suites on December 5, 2014.

On December 5th, Tom Manelski will be inducted as Grappler.


Tom Manelski was born and raised in NJ.  He resides in Toms River NJ and has lived there for about 22 years. He graduated college in 1997 with a degree in Business.  He then started working in finance.   He now has 17 years banking and investing experience behind him and continues to work in the financial industry.

Tom started playing sports at 7.   He played many sports but focused on wrestling in high school.  He decided not to wrestle in college because he was pursuing a racing career in Motocross.  He raced for 12 years but was unable to make a living at it so he decided to move on.  He then spent a lot of time in the gym weight training, but needed more.  After watching many of the “UFC’s”, like many others, Tom developed an interest in Jiu Jitsu.  He started training Jiu Jitsu in 2006.  First he trained at “Madama Jiu Jitsu” which lasted about 6 months.  He was introduced to Bill Scott who was a Brown belt in BJJ at the time.  Scott opened a school close to Tom’s home so Tom decided to train there.  There were many higher belts there that led to great training and advancement for Tom.  He immediately started competing and had success right away.  He received my Blue belt through Black belt with Bill Scott/Pablo Popovitch.   He has over 150 gi and no gi grappling wins, with victories in Grapplers Quest, NAGA, PGL and IBJJF to name a few.  He continues to train at least 3 times a week.  As long as he is physically able to train, he expects to train for the rest of his life.  Training Jiu Jitsu helps him be better prepared in life both physically and mentally.


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