News AND Events
Send our Jiu-Jitsu team to Worlds
Our Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Academy has so many talented members, and the head instructor, Professor Bruno Tostes, has chosen specific individuals to represent him and the Academy at the International BJJ Federation Worlds Competition in Long Beach, CA, at the end of May.
Where to Donate:
A Little History:
I’d like to tell you a little about the individuals selected to compete in Long Beach this year. First we have Professor Bruno himself. He is a Renzo Gracie black belt, and has trained with Master Renzo since he came to the US in 2001. Professor Bruno arrived in this country with his gi, a backpack on his back and $500 in his pocket. He also had a dream – to learn Jiu-Jitsu from the Master and open his own Academy so that he could share his passion for the sport with others. He realized that dream in 2005 when he opened Renzo Gracie Academy of Latham.
Chad Ahr is the embodiment of courage and determination. Chad is one of two students who have been with Professor Bruno since 2005, but the road for Chad has not been easy. In 2008, he took an unfortunate knee to the head in which required emergency surgery to remove an ommaya reservoir that was emplaced as part of treatment for childhood Leukemia. Chad was forced to take a hiatus from Jiu-Jitsu for six months. He had his first grand mal seizure in 2009, and a tumor at the base of his neck removed in 2010. Chad, however, kept his hopes up by thinking about getting back on the mats as soon as he was healthy enough to do so, and in 2013 he earned his black belt from Professor Bruno.
It’s often said of Jiu-Jitsu practitioners that their personality comes out on the mat. This is no less true when our member, Julien Banner, practices with anyone of our other students. Julien is very laid back, yet meticulous. It is evident that he enjoys this sport and our Academy; however, Julien will be leaving us after May to pursue other opportunities. We understand that this is a tremendous sacrifice on his part, and we want to build one last memory with Julien before he leaves.
Corey Stockton is our consummate competitor. Constantly pushing himself to improve, Corey attends every competition within a 150 mile radius. Professor Bruno wants to give Corey the opportunity to compete at a different level, on a different stage, and to bring Corey to Long Beach to showcase all of his talent and hard work.
What we are requesting is minor compared to the lasting effects your contribution will have on our members… not only the ones competing in Worlds, but also for those of us who will be back home cheering them on. Just knowing that we will be able to send a contingent to compete in such a grand arena will be a source of great pride for our Academy.
Thank you for your support!