JUJITSU INSTRUCTOR OF THE YEAR : AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
Renshi Edward Scharrer began training in 1969 at the age of five with the Queanbeyan RSL Judo and Jujitsu Club, which was later to become the Peter Morton Academy of Self Defence. During his junior years he participated in the many exhibitions that the Academy held to raise money for charitable and service organisations. In 1974 his potential was recognised when he was awarded the prize of Best and Fairest Boy from a field of about 200 other boys training in the class at the time. At the end of 1977 he graded to lst Kyu Brown. A year later he joined the senior class in Queanbeyan and at the same time began instructing in the junior class. In 1980 he was nominated to commence training for Shodan and successfully graded to that level in December 1981.
Since grading to Black belt, Renshi Scharrer began his teaching career in earnest, teaching in many branches and seminars within the Academy. In 1982 he started teaching in the following branches: the Canberra branch for two years, gaining the award of Outstanding Club Member in the first year; Queanbeyan seniors for nine years until 1991; Canberra/South Coast Black Belt class for 16 years until 1998. During this span he taught nine separate Shodan groups totalling 46 students, of which 45 achieved a successful grade to Shodan. Today he is still acting as an advisor to the two Shodan classes currently running in the region.
In 1984 he took on the role of Chief Instructor at the St Edmunds branch, a position he still holds today, teaching ju-jitsu/ self defence to the pupils of both St Edmunds and the adjoining St Clare’s colleges as part or their extra curricular activities.
In 1985 he began teaching at the newly formed Lyneham branch. A year later the branch moved to the Evatt Primary school to gain extra students, doubling its membership to 40 students with the move. He continued to teach there until 1992.
In 1995 he returned to the Queanbeyan branch to take on the role of Chief Instructor of the junior class and held that position until the beginning of 1999 before giving the mantle to one of his students, so that he will in turn receive the valuable experience of being a Chief Instructor.
Renshi Scharrer became more involved with the administrative side of the Academy in 1988 when he was appointed to be the Academy Secretary. He held this position for six years until 1994. His work involved preparing committee meetings, communicating with all Academy branches ensuring that they were kept up to-date with administrative developments, maintaining insurances, organising coaching accreditations for Academy instructors through the Australian Coaching Council’s National Coaching Accreditation Scheme and preparing and publishing four editions of the annual newsletter.
During his time as Secretary, Renshi Scharrer also perceived the need to create new, as well as to update, existing academy documents of syllabus, rules and regulations. This work formed the foundation of what later became the Academy’s Standard Operating Guidelines and Procedures Manual, which he commenced to work on after completing his appointment as secretary. The first edition was recently published in 1999.
In 1992 Renshi Scharrer was appointed Vice Deputy Principal of the Academy by Soke Morton. A year later this role was extended to include a role of National Chief Instructor of the Academy. At the same time with these appointments his training partner and co-instructor of the Canberra Black Belt class, Renshi David Rowley, was similarly promoted to Vice Principal and National Chief Instructor. Together they were charged with the responsibility of becoming more active in the leadership of the Academy, together with demonstrating and teaching all syllabus techniques at Academy seminars, as well as visiting branches to ensure that techniques are taught and executed properly.
From 1991 the Academy has invited its students and instructors to attend its national seminars which have been hosted by its various branches all around Australia. Renshi Scharrer has played an integral role in every seminar to date by conducting classes together with Renshi Rowley on the technical aspects of the Academy’s style of Ju-jitsu. He has also collaborated in planning the full program of four Annual Seminars.
Renshi Scharrer currently holds the rank of Godan and in 1999 was awarded Life Membership, for his 30 years of dedication and service to the Academy.