Edmund K. Parker began studying Kenpo with William K.S. Chow at the age of 16. He was a native of Honolulu, Hawaii and graduated from Kamehameha High School. As Grand Master Parker learned Karate in Hawaii, he realised the need for new innovations to combat modern day methods of fighting.
Ed Parker teaching the Kenpo Salutation
To fulfil this need, he developed revolutionary concepts, theories, and principles that are practical not classical. Because of this, his innovative concepts and ideas have greatly enhanced the Martial Arts in the United States and throughout the world. While at Brigham Young University, Ed Parker, 23 years of age at the time, had a closed club, teaching only students of Polynesian descent and law enforcement officers. One of the law enforcement officers was Charles Beeder Sr. who became Ed Parker's permanent assistant.
In 1956 Grand Master Parker graduated from Brigham Young University (BYU) with a B.S. in Psychology and sociology. After graduation from BYU, Ed Parker moved to California and opened his second school in 1956 and also founded the International Kenpo Karate Association the same year. It is recognized that Edmund K. Parker 10th degree black belt is the undisputed "Father" of American Kenpo Karate having opened the first commercial Karate studio in 1954.
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