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Master Francis Pineda
Master Instructor and Co-Owner
Starting his training in 1981 at the Jhoon Rhee school in Marlow Heights, Maryland, Master Francis Pineda received his black belt with outstanding marks three years later. Within five years, Master Pineda was the manager and head instructor of the Glenn Dale Jhoon Rhee school, a position he held until 1991. He then became Assistant Manager and Head Instructor at Jhoon Rhee’s Georgetown school, further developing his martial arts and school operations skills. In 1997, Master Pineda set out for Arizona, where he served for five years as Vice President and Head Instructor of America’s Best Karate, a system of five 7,000-square-foot schools with 300 students each. In 2004, after returning to Virginia, Master Pineda began his current role as Co-owner and Head Instructor of Jhoon Rhee Arlington. A year later, he was also appointed Head Instructor of Jhoon Rhee International. Over the course of his career as a martial arts educator, Master Pineda has trained more than 20 national champions; he has also provided training for the Maryland State Police, the Washington D.C. Metro Police, and the Arizona DPS. The many students who have benefitted from his instruction include Congresswoman Mary Bono.
Master Pineda, a 6th Dan Black Belt, has excelled in competition, as well. Ranked Top Ten nationally in forms and sparring for five years running, he has been a nationally sponsored member of both Team Otomix and Team Prestige, and was Team Founder and Captain of the University of Maryland’s Sport Karate Team. He has also served as Tournament Director of regional and national martial arts tournaments for more than 12 years.
Given his impressive martial arts credentials, it’s perhaps no surprise that Master Pineda also finds himself in the entertainment spotlight from time to time. In addition to being featured in the 2002 movie Leather and Iron, he works as martial arts choreographer and director for Creative Edge Studios in Sterling, Virginia, and appears as “Khan” in the company’s series of Untouchable computer, coin-op, and console games.
Master Pineda holds a B.S. degree in Biology, with a minor in Psychology, as well as a B.A. in AOS in Network Engineering.
Master Pineda is married to Elizabeth and has three sons, Alex, Anderson and Austin. Alex is a Black Belt at Jhoon Rhee Arlington while Anderson is currently working his way through the ranks. Austin hopes to be a “Kneehigh Ninja” soon!