Sensei Mark Smith

September 15, 2018

Sensei Mark Smith, 1956 – 2018


“Sad News. We are broken hearted.”


by Kevin Tamai


We have lost a dear friend, coach, sensei, mentor and so much more. Sensei Mark Smith passed from this world on Wednesday night at the Anne Arundel Medical Center. He was surrounded by his family.


Mark has been a Sensei with Hui-O-Judo in Beltsville for about 30 years under the lead of Sensei Ken Tamai. They traveled on countless judo adventures around the country together. Mark touched hundred of thousands of lives in a very positive manner, many through judo but also many in his every day life.


Mark devoted his life to his loving wife Michelle. They were together for 39 years. Mark has two sons Blake and Tyler.


Sensei Mark Smith, was also the founder and lifeblood of the Adaptive Judo Club, VA Medical Center, Washington, DC.


Sensei Mark worked with every fiber of his being – to help Veterans staging a comeback from polytrauma, blast injury, traumatic brain injury (TBI) and post traumatic stress (PTSD) to become Mark’s favorite term…”Warriors Again!”


Sensei Mark was also a driving force to help build the Blind and Visually Impaired Judo Program and Judoka across the Maryland/Washington/DC area; across the Olympic Training Center; and as a coach and sensei in US-Japan exchanges.


Mark will be remembered always as a Good Man, a Great Friend; and a Man whose kind deeds mattered in this world.


A mass of Christian burial will be held on Tuesday at 10:30 AM at St John Neumann Catholic Church located at 620 N. Best Gate Road in Annapolis MD.


In lieu of flowers please donate to one of the organization that Mark loved. DCVAMC Adaptive Judo program, Blind Judo association, Hui-O-Judo Beltsville or any other organization you know he was associated with or loved.


Shufu Shinbun is BACK !

This newsletter is presented in memory of Malcolm Hodges who was a dedicated Shufu and Washington Judo Club member for many years and wrote and was the editor of the monthly Shufu Shinbun newsletter.


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Coach Certification

SafeSport Certification is now required for all USJF registered clubs. If you have already completed the course and submitted a copy of your certificate, you do not need to resubmit. For more information or to take the course, please visit

Heads Up concussion training, through the CDC’s website, is a requirement for all members of your USJF registered club who function as teachers at any time. Please advise all of your instructors and assistant instructors of this requirement. The training can be accessed at:

Hilaire Notewo Seeking Donations for Judo Programs in the Ivory Coast, Needs Gis and Equipment

Longtime Shufu Judo member Hilaire Notewo is planning to relocate to Côte D’Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Africa in late November/December. He will be supporting judo programs, but equipment (esp. judo uniforms) are difficult to come by.  Hilaire is looking for gently used judo gis and other equipment.  Hilaire will also be visiting and donating goods to orphanages.  Should you have gently used shoes, clothes for teenagers, youths, and toddlers, kindly make them available to Hilaire.

If you would like to donate to this effort, you can send your donation to the following address:

Hilaire Notewo

7401 New Hampshire Ave. #1003

Takoma Park, MD  20912

Or contact him via his email address: 202 945 3781.