Grandmaster Kong, Young Il was the Tae Kwon-Do All Star Team Captain at Kyung Hee University, South Korea in 1963. He was in the Republic of Korea Army from 1964 to 1968 where he was again the Tae Kwon-Do All Star Team Captain. During those years, he was also the first Master Instructor to Introduce Tae Kwon-Do to the 8th US Army in Korea.
During 1963 to 1980, Grandmaster Kong travelled around the world with General Choi Hong Hi, as a selected member of an International Tae Kwon Do demonstration team. He visited 127 countries performing demonstrations to introduce Tae Kwon- Do Martial Art to the world. After each demonstration there was an open invitation/challenge to the public to fight any demonstration team member Grandmaster Kong fought martial artists of all kinds in 127 countries and never lost a fight.
Throughout 1980 to 2004, Grandmaster Kong opened Tae Kwon- Do Dojangs from the East Coast to the West Coast of America as well as Puerto Rico and taught Tae Kwon- Do to thousands of practitioners. Quite a few of his students became champions around the world. One noteworthy highlight was his being Master Instructor for the USA government agency, the FBI.
Amongst his awards, Grandmaster Kong has been awarded the All American Open Award, inducted into the Hall Of Fame and been voted Martial Artist of the Year.
A first-generation student of General Choi, Hong Hi, the Father of Tae Kwon-Do, Grandmaster Kong, Young Il’s Tae Kwon-Do roots are in the Oh Do Kwan in Won Joo, Korea. Today, Seventy-four years later, Grandmaster Kong, Young Il teaches the martial art of Tae Kwon-Do with the same approaches and rigor he learned from the Father of Tae Kwon-Do and perfected through continuous practice of the art. Grandmaster Kong, Young Il is steadfastly focused on promoting Tae Kwon-Do and General Choi’s legacy.
Here are some highlights from the illustrious career of this Tae Kwon-Do pioneer:
1952 – At age nine, became a student of Shotakan karate;
1962 – 1967 – Attended the Kyung Hee University Physical Education College became All Star Captain of the university’s Tae Kwon-Do team;
1963 – 1967 – Served in the Republic of Korea Army, attaining the rank of Sergeant; Served as a Master Instructor of the Republic of Korea Army with duties to enhance the instruction of other Tae Kwon-Do instructors; With General Choi, Grandmaster Nam, Tae Hi, and others, co- developed several Tae Kwon-Do patterns; Became the first Master Instructor to introduce the 8th U.S. Army in Korea to Tae Kwon-Do; Named Captain of the competitive Tae Kwon-Do All Star Team of the Republic of Korea Army; Became member of the original International Tae Kwon-Do
1973 – 1980 – As member of the International Tae Kwon-Do Federation (ITF) Demonstration Team, and in the company of General Choi, visited more than 127 countries as part of ambassadorship for Tae Kwon-Do; Immigrated to the United States upon invitation from an American Soldier who was his student of Tae Kwon-Do; Founded and operated n umerous dojangs across the United States and Puerto Rico; Served as Master Instructor for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in Pennsylvania;
1994 – Became the 39th Inductee to the All-American Black Belt Hall of Fame.
1997 – Promoted to 9th Degree Black Belt by General Choi, Hong Hi in Poland.
2003 – Co-founded the International Chang-Hon Tae Kwon-Do Federation.
2006 – Assumed the role of President of the World Tae Kwon-Do Alliance.