Martin T. Buell

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Martin T. Buell, born August 31, 1942 in Honolulu, Hawaii, founded the Universal Kempo Karate Schools Association in 1981.[1] Headquartered in Aiea, Hawaii, Universal Kempo teaches Chinese Kempo Karate, and has branches throughout the United States.[2] Buell is a former commissioner for the Professional Karate Association, and a former rating chairman for Karate Illustrated Magazine.[3]

Buell, who is of Irish and Chinese ancestry, began his martial arts career at the Kaimuki YMCA in Honolulu where he studied in 1953. He trained in “Kenpo” at the Central YMCA, Honolulu in 1956, and in 1957 Buell began his training with Adriano Emperado in the Kajukenbo System, and continued his studies at the Kajukenbo Kaimuki YMCA Branch.[4]

Buell received his black belt in 1966,[5] his second degree in 1969, and his third degree in 1970. He was promoted to a fifth degree Chief Instructor after spending many years as a trainer and teacher. In 1982, Universal Kempo's board of directors awarded Buell the rank of Professor, 10th Degree.[6]


Buell is a strong fighter who has won many sparring matches in tournament competitions:

  • Kajukenbo Championships (1968 Most Outstanding Competitor)[citation needed]
  • All Hawaii Karate Championships (1968 Runner Up)[citation needed]
  • All American Championships (1969 Most Outstanding Competitor)[citation needed]
  • Hawaii All Stars (1978 Coach) - participated at the Professional Karate Association Championships in Baltimore, Maryland[citation needed]