Instructor David Fullen


The style of Chinese Kempo-Karate taught at Fullen’s School of Self Defense is directly descended from the Chinese Kempo developed by Professor Walter L.N. Godin. Godin began his martial arts training at the age of 12 when he began training in Judo. Four years later, at the age of 16 Godin began training with William “Thunderbolt” Chow in Chow’s Kempo-jujitsu. Then, at 18 he left Chow to begin his training in Kajukenbo with Adriano and Joseph Emperado. In 1959/60 he worked with Victor “Sonny” Gascon to develop the Karazenpo Go Shinjutsu. Then, in 1961, after receiving his 5th degree black belt in Kajukenbo, Godin opened the first Godin’s School of Self Defense in Kaimuki, HI. Godin also spent some time training in Hawaiian Lua with Brother Abe Kamahoahoa. In 1974 Walter Godin was awarded his Professorship (7th Degree) by Grandmaster William Chow.

Martin Buell began training in Kempo under Thomas Young in 1955 and a couple of years later started training in the Kajukenbo system under Sijo Emperado and Alehu Reyes. Buell went with Walter Godin in 1961 to train at Godin’s School of Self Defense. Buell was awarded his black belt by Godin in 1966. Buell eventually assumed control of Godin’s Schools and in 1981 he founded the Universal Kempo Karate Schools Association.

Jesse Manegdeg first trained in kung fu, then in 1977 began his training in Chinese Kempo with Instructor Buell at the Godin’s School of Self Defense and stayed with Buell through the creation of the Universal Kempo Karate Schools Association. He was promoted to black belt in 1980 by (then 5th degree) Martin Buell. Instructor Manegdeg opened the Peterson AFB branch of the UKKSA in Colorado Springs, CO, where David Fullen began training in Chinese Kempo in 1987. Fullen was awarded his black belt by Instructor Manegdeg and Professor Buell in 1992. Fullen continued to train under Instructor Manegdeg until he left the UKKSA in 1994.

In 1996, Fullen opened the Fullen’s School of Self Defense in Dallas, TX teaching the Chinese Kempo-Karate.

Fullen also trained in the Kajukembo Self Defense Systems from 2002 to 2004 under Professor Richard Peralta, who awarded him a 2nd degree in Kajukembo.

Although influenced by a couple of years of Tai Chi training in the mid 1970’s under Sifu Beth Johnson, unofficial training in Tae Kwon Do in the mid 1980’s, and the  Kajukembo training under Professor Peralta, Fullen’s Chinese Kempo remains firmly based on the teachings of Professor Walter Godin.


With my first Kempo teacher, Instructor Manegdeg in 1992.


With Prof. Buell when I received my black belt in 1992.


With Prof. Godin at his seminar in N.Y. in 2000.


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