In 1957, Mr. Golden was on active duty in the Air Force, stationed in Japan. Being a “skinny” guy who was always getting pushed around, he decided to look for a school that offered Judo classes. During his search he observed a martial artist working out. Mr. Golden asked him what he was doing and the man replied, Karate. Soon thereafter, Mr. Golden began training with Mr. Noboru Kobayashi.
Mr. Golden extended his military enlistment for an additional year so he could continue to train in Japan and test for his Shodan, which he received in 1961.
During this time, he was an active competitor in Japan. In one of these tournaments, Mr. Golden fought against the captain of the Italian karate team and won and was awarded a trophy for “Best Fighting Spirit”.
After achieving his Shodan, Mr. Golden returned to the United States. While in California, Mr. Golden began training with Mr. Hidetaka Nishiyama, who had just come to America.
Mr. Golden also had the fortune to train under Mr. Yutaka Yaguchi, who was assigned to assist Mr. Nishiyama. In the mid 60’s, Mr. Nishiyama sent Mr. Golden to Arizona to teach karate. Then, in an attempt to further develop karate in America, the Japan Karate Association sent more qualified instructors from Japan to the United States. Mr. Golden returned to California after Mr. Shojiro Koyama arrived in Arizona.
In 1968 the Japan Karate Associations held its first Instructor Trainee program in the United States. Mr. Golden attended this program full-time, and graduated in 1969. This was the first instructor class to graduate outside of Japan.
He was then sent to Athens, Ohio (Ohio University) to begin teaching karate.
While in Athens, Mr. Golden began making the trip to Philadelphia to train with Mr. Okazaki, another JKA instructor. In 1977 Mr. Okazaki formed the International Shotokan Karate Federation (I.S.K.F.) and Mr. Golden was appointed the Chief Instructor of the Mid-America Karate Region.
Mr. Golden credits his karate achievements to all of his JKA/ISKF instructors.