Fridley High School
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Grand Master Gordon Franks has over 40 years experience in the martial arts. After earning his black belt in 1972, it took him just three years to win the PKA World Super Lightweight championship in full contact karate.
Grand Master Gordon Franks is one of the USA Karate School's original founders. The organization operates several schools in the Twin Cities serving thousands of active members.
Grand Master Franks was a ground breaker in Professional Full Contact Karate. He was the first World Professional Super-light-weight Karate Championship which he won in Berlin, Germany, on September 21st, 1975. He was the first African American World Champion. He was the first to win his title in a foreign country. Many of Grand Master Franks' fights were televised, as he was at his prime during the infancy of the sport.
Being one of the most recognized fighters in the country had many benefits, such as a chance to travel to Paris, France in May of 1976 as a member of the American All Star Team along with World Champions Bill Wallace, Jeff Smith, Joe Lewis and Isaias Duenas.
Other accomplishments include:
Feature articles in Karate Illustrated Magazine, Professional Karate Magazine, Sport Karate Magazine, Official Karate Magazine, and Minnesota Business Journal. He is listed in the History of Martial Arts, and Who's Who in American Martial Arts. Franks was the chairman of the PKA Fighters Association and a deputy commissioner on the Minnesota Boxing Board in charge of competitive karate activity in Minnesota. Franks' fights have been televised on CBS and on the ESPN cable network, where he has also been an expert commentator. He and Pat Worley have been recognized as KARATE MASTERS.
Grand Master Pat Worley began his martial arts training under Grand Master Pat Burleson in Ft. Worth, Tx in 1967. In 1969, he earned his Black Belt under the instruction of Master Chuck Loven, His Black Belt review panel included well known Martial Artists such as Grand Master Chuck Norris and the father of Texas Karate, Grand Master Allen Steen.
As stated in "The Official History of Karate in America", written by Al Weiss, "Pat Worley is a twenty-two year-old competitor who has claimed some of karate's most coveted titles in the past few years. Among these are… the 'Nationals' in Washington, D.C. He has been referred to as one of the most well-mannered competitors on the tournament circuit." Grand Master Worley, who was rated in the national top ten for fighting from 1970 through 1975, was the number one contender for the World Middle-weight title from 1974 to 1977.
Grand Master Worley moved to Minnesota in 1974 and is one of the original founders of USA KARATE.
He is a martial arts instructor, retired top-ranked national competitor, and is currently a Tenth degree black belt registered with the World Martial Arts Ranking Association.
In April 2009, Grand Master Worley was inducted into the Tae Kwon-Do Hall of Fame.
Other accomplishments include:
Feature articles in Karate Illustrated Magazine, Professional Karate Magazine, Sport Karate Magazine, Official Karate Magazine, and Minnesota Business Journal. He is listed in the History of Martial Arts, and Who's Who in American Martial Arts. As an expert in Martial Arts, he has written articles for various Martial Arts magazines.