Getting to know WMMA via Twitter Series: Katrina Belcher

Our spotlight of the week this week is going to be on Katrina Belcher.  If you don't know Katrina by name maybe you know her by some of the things she is involved in.  First and foremost she is the Owner and CEO of The Ultimate Female Fighter website.  She is heavily involved in the WMMA community as a reporter for WMMA, as someone who is always helping female fighters find sponsors, and an all around good friend to everyone she meets.  She is also the President of the only online MMA Referee and Judge workshop on the Internet and as if that wasn't enough she also owns her own Grant Writing business where she helps Non-Profit Organizations get grant money to be able to make the world a better place.  I could go on and on about all of the great things Katrina is involved in and things she is currently working on but why not let her tell you some of these things in her own words.

SchenkMMA:  Tell us about yourself.

Katrina:  Oh dear – well, not used to talking about myself, but I’ll list some of the things I’m involved in, how’s that?!  I’ve been married for 32 years; we’ve been blessed with two beautiful children; for me “real” job I own a company that provides grant writing services and we setup nonprofit (501-c-3) organizations. 

I’m originally from California, but live in Knoxville, TN.  I take karate and kendo at Arts of the Samurai here in Knoxville; and I teach karate (to the little kids!) and hand-to-hand combat (to the adults!) at the dojo.  We also have a special program that we offer to women and children called EZ Defense.

I created the only online MMA Referee and Judge’s workshop available, so potential ref’s and judges can take this online course and learn the rules and regulations of MMA, and learn what is expected from them in the ring and ringside.

Finally, I LOVE MMA and especially WMMA!  Haha – I report on it, help setup fights, do interviews of MMA personalities, and I’m a certified ref and judge myself.  I even have people send me MMA-related products to test out and give ‘em my opinion on, which is pretty cool.  I’ve got to sample some good stuff and I always try to be fair in reviewing anything people send me.

SchenkMMA:  What Martial Arts have you studied?

Katrina:  I've studied Krav Maga (blue belt), Agedo (Japanese Okinawan family-style open handed karate; black belt), Kendo (red belt) and a little bit of judo, grappling and Muay Thai.  I started taking BJJ, but I’ve got too much on my plate, so had to give it up for now.

SchenkMMA:  What got you interested in WMMA?

Katrina:  In about 2002 or so, when my children were taking karate, I used to watch them all the time. Their instructor invited me to start taking Krav Maga, which I resisted at first (long story!) but I finally started taking it and LOVED it! While in class, all the guys always talked about MMA, the UFC, watching the shows, and invited me to watch some of the fights.  That's what got me hooked!  When I noticed females were terribly unrepresented in the industry and you'd seldom see them fighting, so I decided it was time to start doing what I could to promote WMMA.  We just called it "female MMA" at the time! I started helping to setup fights, reported on female fighters, getting sponsors for females in the sport and so on...and it's just continued from there.

Now neither of my children take karate anymore…just me!

SchenkMMA:  Why do you follow SchenkMMA?

Katrina:  Chris has been very helpful to me and TUFF, and so I started paying attention to the site.  I love the articles, interviews and helpful information you always post!

SchenkMMA:  Anyone you would like to send a shout out to? or mention?

Katrina:  Well, Chris Schenk, of course!  Awesome spirit and very driven to help females in this industry.  And then Sarah Maloy - she's an up-and-coming pro-female fighter who has always been loyal to TUFF.  She's on our board of directors and is a force in the WMMA community.

I'd also like to mention Belinda Dunne of Princess of Pain, Angel Rafael Cordero Candelaria, and Tim Peterson – because these WMMA advocates are always encouraging and uplifting to me.

I’d also like to send a shout out to Mia Hayes – she’s a female MMA fighter who’s battling breast cancer.  Just got word she’s back in the hospital again, and is in a lot of pain.  Please pray for her.

Thanks so much for the interview - very much appreciated!  It's weird being on the "other side" for a change!

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