2nd Dan Examinations

On June 22, 2024, Dual Dragons TaeKwon-Do celebrated the promotion of several black belts. Instructors Morgan Bengert and Sienna Whiteside were successful in their examinations for 2nd Degree Black Belt.

Congratulations to all of you on your much-deserved promotions!

2nd and 3rd Dan Promotions

On June 18, 2024, Kopperud TaeKwon-Do Schools celebrated the promotion of several black belts. Instructors Kari Toews, Jocelyn Toews, Heidi McGregor, and Kathy Lane were promoted to 2nd Degree Black Belt, while Senior Instructor Benjamin Uhren was promoted to 3rd Degree Black Belt.

Congratulations to all of you on your much deserved promotions!

5th, 6th, and 7th Dan Promotions

Evan Reinbold began training in TaeKwon-Do in 2000 in Stettler, AB. He took a short break from training in the early 2000s, but returned with newfound energy, quickly earning his black belt. Evan demonstrates a tremendous amount of passion for TaeKwon-Do, a passion that is infectious to everyone around him. He is a dedicated instructor, constantly encouraging and pushing his students to be their best while building them up to be even more than they believe they can be. His contagious laugh can be heard no matter where he is, as he revels in the joy of training, teaching, and officiating. Perhaps the only thing he loves more than TaeKwon-Do is his daughter, who is beginning her own martial arts journey and following in her father’s footsteps.

Cade Bengert has been training in TaeKwon-Do since 2000 and instructing since he was 12 years old. He has earned the respect and admiration of his Unified TaeKwon-Do colleagues by his dedication to personal training, promotion of the art and support of both his own students and his peers. As part of UTI’s 2010 Team Canada, Cade earned a Silver Medal at the World Championships in Telford, England. In his April 27th examination this year, Cade demonstrated both the physical and emotional strength and power that has highlighted his dedication as a Student of the art, ferocity as a competitor, integrity as an Instructor and validity, now, as a TaeKwon-Do Master. He credits his successes in life to his wonderful wife.

Dave Hargreaves has been instructing TaeKwon-Do since the late 1980s and is a beloved member of Unified TaeKwon-Do International. He has promoted dozens of black belts in that time, and captained Team Canada in 2010, as the team travelled to Telford, England for the World Championships – a competition at which Dave won bronze. Dave is beloved by his students, both young and old, and his dedication to them radiates in everything he does. He has been described as a beloved father figure by more than one of his black belts, and a dedicated friend by individuals across all of UTI. Dave embodies the tenets of TaeKwon-Do, and carries them with him in all walks of life, serving as an inspiration to everyone he comes in contact with. He is a loving husband, father, and grandfather.

All three candidates were successful in their examinations. Surrounded by family, friends, and colleagues, Chief Instructor Evan Reinbold, Master Cade Bengert, and Master Dave Hargreaves were promoted to the respective ranks of 5th Degree, 6th Degree, and 7th Degree Black Belt on April 27, 2024, in Stettler, AB. I am honoured to be a part of their ongoing journeys in TaeKwon-Do and join with the entire Unified TaeKwon-Do Family in celebrating their achievements. Well done and congratulations!

– Grand Master Kopperud IX –

4th Dan Promotion

Alicia Smith started training in Wainwright with Master Godwin at the age of 5 in 1998. She was a quiet but dedicated student, consistently training with adults twice her size. Alicia successfully completed her black belt exam in 2008, earned her 2nd Dan in 2010, and her 3rd Dan in 2015. Alicia was part of the Unified Team Canada team that traveled to the United Kingdom in 2010. The past two years she has been training in Hanna with Mr. Chostner. Alicia is super supportive of all her instructors and colleagues and is known for the cakes she bakes for them at exam time. Alicia currently works for the town of Drumheller and is recently engaged. Miss Smith was successfully promoted to 4th degree black belt on April 21, 2024.

5th and 7th Dan Promotions

Alyssa Coughlan started training in TaeKwon-Do in 2002 at Hetlinger TaeKwon-Do in Wetaskiwin at the age of 5 (although there is a rumour that her mother may have embellished her actual age on her registration form). Taking to it quickly, Alyssa progressed through the junior ranks and burst into the adult class at a young age. She attacked her training with determination and maturity beyond her years, earning her first-degree black belt at the age of 14 in 2011, her second-degree black belt in 2013, third-degree black belt in 2016, and fourth-degree black belt in 2019. She is beloved by her students, who visibly light up when they see her in class. She is known for being dependable, committed, and hard-working, doing anything she can to help those around her. She has developed a Women’s Self Defense program that has found large levels of success within Wetaskiwin. She is a Provisional Registered Psychologist for Power Psychology in Edmonton and soon Wetaskiwin. Alyssa is a loving wife and dog-mom.

Cory Hetlinger has been instructing TaeKwon-Do since 1998 and has been a member of Unified TaeKwon-Do International since 1996. He began TaeKwon-Do while attending university and after training seven days per week, he received his Black-Belt in only 3 years. He travelled to Eindhoven, Holland in 2000 as a member of Team Canada. Cory is known for his humor, dedication to his students and UTI, and attention to detail when training. Cory has a Bachelors Degree in Physical Education, a Bachelors Degree in Education, and is a high school teacher for  Wetaskiwin Regional School Division. Cory is also a dedicated husband and father, and attributes TaeKwon-Do to giving him his beautiful family.

Both candidates performed amazingly and showed their dedication to the martial art of TaeKwon-Do and the Unified TaeKwon-Do curriculum. Surrounded by family and friends, Chief Instructor Coughlan and Master Instructor Hetlinger were promoted to the ranks of 5th Degree Black Belt and 7th Degree Black Belt, respectively. Congratulations!

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