Maureen Braziel

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Maureen Braziel
Residence Brooklyn, New York, USA
Style Judo

Maureen Braziel was one of the pioneers of Women's Judo competition.[1] She has been thought of as being one of the top Judoka in the United States,[2] and within the 1970s.[3]


She won the silver medal heavyweight in the 1971 British Open, and bronze in the open division.[4] She was the first female to place in international competition in Judo.[5] As a result, helped to make women's Judo a sport under the Amateur Athletic Union.[1] Maureen was the women's US National 1st-place winner for the heavyweight division and the grand champion for the years 1974, 1975, and 1976.[6]
At a competition weight of 180 lbs, Maureen was strong enough to compete with men.[7] She defeated Diane Pierce in 1974 for the national championship.[8] Diane Pierce would later appear on the show To Tell The Truth claiming to be the 1974 National Judo Champion.[7] Maureen won the gold medal in the 1975 Judo International championship for the heavyweight division in Switzerland.[4] She was the undisputed US Heavyweight Champion on the East Coast from 1967 to 1977.[9] In 1976 she was part of the US Women's National Team under her friend [10] and team coach Rusty Kanokogi [4] She placed second in 1977, 1979 and 1980 for the Women's US Nationals[11] She was the Amateur Athletic Union Most Outstanding Player Award in 1974 [1]

Personal life[edit]

Following competition she founded the PolyTech Judo Club.[9] She served as the head coach for the Poly Tech Judo Club.[12] She would later serve as athletic director at Poly Tech.[13] Even later she would serve as the athletic director for NYU-Poly.[14] She would later retire after 30 years at NYU.[14] She served as the secretary for NYS Judo (circa 2009).[15]