The Masters & The Mission
Grand Master Diedra Y. Cole
Founder DYC Martial Arts
Author: Glimpses Of The Warrior Within:
My Journey Of Discovering I Am Enough!
Hometown: Milwaukee, WI
Current city: Atlanta, GA
By the age of nine years old, I was mesmerized with Kung-Fu movies. I enjoyed watching them in the downtown theater with my brothers on Saturday afternoons. In the early 1970’s, my father signed us up for Karate classes at a local YMCA in the inner city of my hometown of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Judge Charles A. Warren, Founder of the Kempo-Goju School of Karate (the states first African American Dojo) was our Sensei. This was the official start of my training journey that would tap into (the beginning) of the awakening of the Warrior Within. I received my 1st Degree Black belt in 1981, during a rigorous 3 day outdoor Martial Arts training camp (Gaashuku) which ended with me having to spar over a dozen black belt male students (grown men) for two minute rounds each without quitting. I was the first and youngest female to ever take and complete this test in the Kempo-Goju System nearly 41 years ago, just a few weeks after my 16th birthday .
Fast forward some 47 years later and here I am, a dedicated Martial Warrior, still standing strong, still training, teaching and doing what I love most which is enhancing my knowledge in the Martial Sciences. Currently, I am a 8th Degree senior student of the legendary Sijo Steve (Sanders) Muhammad, Co-Founder of the Black Karate Federation (BKF) and Founder of Ken Win Tai Bai, which is a Mathematical Fighting Science that combines Kenpo, Wing Chun, Tai Chi and Boxing.
In July 2019, I was inducted into the Martial Arts Hall of Fame in Atlanta, Georgia and recognized as an original BKF Ancient Alpha Warrior. That same weekend, I was also designated the position of Official Arbitrator for Steve Muhammad’s First Annual Fight Like a God Karate Tournament. What a prestige honor and privilege that was!
Last year I was inducted into the Ultimate Warrior Hall of Fame Class of 2021 by Martial Arts legend Ron Van Clief (Aka The Black Dragon) and Sifu Al DaCascos. During this honor, I (along with a hosts of other top notch Martial Artists including Actor Michael Jai White), was the recipient of the Ultimate Warrior Gold Hall of Fame Coin Award while being recognized for longevity, dedication and contributions made to the world of Martial Arts.
I received my formal early, middle and high school education in the Milwaukee public school system. I hold a Bachelors of Arts Degree from Springfield College where I studied Human Services & Criminal Justice and have completed some coursework towards finishing my Masters Degree from Concordia University.
Following in the path of my instructor, I began my own career in law enforcement. A few years after first joining the Police Department, I went back to school full time during the day to obtain my Bachelor’s Degree in Human Services (with an emphasis in Criminal Justice) while working the night shift as a beat cop and raising my children as a single mother. During my tenor as a uniformed officer, I was assigned to different specialty task units, including police liaison officer between the police and the public school systems. As an officer I was blessed to design and formulate a volunteer youth karate program through the Police Athletic League (P.A.L) where I taught basic fundamentals of Martial Arts and healthy forms of discipline to hundreds of youth throughout the community during my off duty hours.
After later testing and being promoted to Detective of Police, I worked on several different assignments which included the Sexual Assault Unit and Violent Crimes Division which would call for me to occasionally assist in Homicide investigations, respectfully. After testing and making the Lieutenant of Detective’s list for promotion, I made the choice to resign in good standing to pursue other opportunities.
Born with a servant’s heart, I love helping others. I volunteer with different community groups including Hosea Feeds the Homeless and 10,0000 Fearless Men and Women Of Atlanta. In my leisure time, I enjoy traveling, all forms of art, music and occasionally acting. I am a Independent Life and Health Insurance Agent. My greatest accomplishment is being the proud mother of two wonderful children, both HBCU honor graduates of Clark Atlanta University.
On my birthday June 7th, 202O (during the midst of the pandemic) I became a first time published Author!!! My book is entitled:
GLIMPSES OF THE WARRIOR WITHIN; MY JOURNEY OF DISCOVERING I AM ENOUGH!
My purpose is to inspire others through vulnerably and transparently sharing some of my own pain, challenges and life difficulties. I share with my readers, glimpses of my personal unorthodox journey growing up and into woman-hood. I also allow them to experience with me how eventually, “after doing the work,” I was finally able to truly unleash the “Warrior Within” although it had in fact been there all along!
After I published my book, I was led by my spirit to start the Glimpses of the Warrior Within Martial Arts Podcast on my Diedra Y Cole YouTube Channel. Using this platform, I bring other Warriors on the show to highlight their journey with hopes of inspiring others to tap into their inner Warrior and fiercely go after their own passion.
Currently I am building a Women’s Empowerment Workshop Network called Glimpses of the Warrior Within, "Boldly Be You" . I reached out to collaborate with my Sister GGM Rita Joyce. and because of our purposed alignment in our Martial Arts journeys, she gladly accepted.
We empower teenage girls and women by teaching them how to protect and defend themselves with martial arts training and skills but also how to make their overall temple balanced, healthy and whole. We use a unique Spirit, Mind, Body approach to do this.
My own accomplishments are a direct testament to my Faith in God and being a true life student of the arts. I am dedicated and committed to paying forward my gift of Martial Arts. I am purposeful during this phase of my life about fulfilling my passion of Empowering as many Girls and Women that I come in contact with by teaching them the importance of and how to embrace their Warrior Within, which includes Boldly being who God created them to be!
In my gratitude for allowing me to be able to do this from all that I have experienced and endured to get here, I give God glory daily!
FB: Diedra Cole
YouTube: Diedra Y. Cole
DYC Martial Arts
Licensed Life and Health Insurance Agent
The link to order the book is:
bit.ly/GLIMPSESOFTHEWARRIORWITHIN Sent from my iPhone
WOWC - "Women of Warrior Consciousness"
Founder: Om My Shea Body Butter
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Current city: Brunswick, GA
Rita King-Joyce the youngest of four born in Los Angeles, California October 1959, graduated from Dorsey High School in June 1977. In her early years of elementary and high school, Rita King-Joyce dedicated her time to learning and then later teaching the arts of piano, ballet, and tap for seven years until her second year of college at Santa Monica City College.
Always fascinated by the philosophy, speed and charisma of Bruce Lee, Rita sought to study the martial arts. It was during the month of February 1981; she was first introduced to BKF Kenpo Karate by Grandmaster Steve (Sanders) Muhammad and Grandmaster Robert Temple at the Sheenway School of Cultural Arts in Los Angeles. Rita’s Martial Arts career consisted of competition until the birth of her son Leonard King II in 1988. Ms. King has been teaching since the rank of purple belt in the year of 1981 until present. Currently she holds the rank of 10th Dan Great Grandmaster, received from Sijo (Founder) Steve Muhammad on November 28th, 2018 in the style of Ken Wing Tai Ba, (The Law of The Invisible Fist) Brain Sight Actualize Fighting. She has also extended her training with Shihan Jerry Bell in the art of Shotoshinkai Black Ryu and earned 6th Dan March 2014.
Now re-married, Great Grandmaster Rita Joyce has been an active member for 40 years and instructor in good standing for the past 36 years. Her teaching roles in the community are as follows but are not limited to; The Academy of Martial Arts/Los Angeles, Celerity Nascent Charter School/Los Angeles, Marcus Garvey School/Los Angeles, COR Christ Our Redeemer Church & Community Center/Irvine, YMCA/Van Nuys, Mar Vista Recreation Center & Muse Arts Studios/Los Angeles. The Prouders Martial Arts Academy/Inglewood & The Golden Isle YMCA Brunswick, Ga and her new training camp Pound4Pound4Kids, Brunswick, Ga. Martial Science age ranges: 4yrs - Adult.
In 1998, Rita King-Joyce was inducted into the Martial Arts Hall of Fame in Baltimore Maryland. In 2000 Rita King’s article, titled “The Makings of A Female Master” was published in the very first BKF Magazine, which sold over 80,000 copies nationally. Shortly thereafter, BET had a special production release of Jet Li’s movie Unleashed in 2005, in which Rita King and other school instructors were interviewed and filmed demonstrating techniques. Additionally, you may have seen Rita King in the November 2006 issue of Ebony Magazine “Kirk & Tammy Franklin” cover, or the LA Watts Times under, Age-Defying Sixth Degree Black Belt Gets a Kick Out of Teaching Martial Arts. With the televised sitcom Hell Date, which aired late 2007, Rita has been seen across the states. Participated in seminar for an all-female foster program (qty. 60) Camp Cinderella Self-Defense & Fitness/Pacific Palisades held in July 2008.
She has also received the Gold Sash award aboard the Queen Mary on August 10th, 2008. This award is only granted to black belts 6th degree or higher with a minimum of 30 years of training and teaching experience. Recently, on July 20, 2019 Rita Joyce was also inducted into the prestigious Black Karate Federation “BKF” Hall of Fame as an Ancient Alpha Warrior, acknowledged with 60 other fellow inductees by the Legendary Josi Steve “Sanders” Muhammad.
With over 25years of business and accounting experience, she strives to empower women and children across California. Top of her list is uniting, motivating & igniting women to challenge themselves by keeping fit and learning how to defend themselves. Over the years, Rita has held several women’s self-defense and domestic violence empowerment seminars. Her endeavors thusly, have directed her to the healing arts of Massage Therapy for the past 16 years & Reiki Energy Healing for 8 yrs. She explains that God has set her on a path of healing self while helping other’s grow in their desires of becoming more healthy, strong & fit mentally, physically & spiritually. To assist them in raising the bar and their expectations of self and the ability of achieving better health, wellness and vitality as they learn & grow from the Art of Personal Protection Martial Arts which is a science. Since relocating to Brunswick Georgia, Rita has spent 2 years teaching Martial Arts at Pound4Pound Fitness a local Non-Profit for youth and she has spent over 2 years at the Golden Isles YMCA which ended in March of 2020 due to Covid-19. For the past 3 years she has been learning the sport of Boxing with coach Dewayne Hendrix in Brunswick, Ga. & recently weightlifting/bodybuilding with coach/trainer Kalvin Brooks of Atlanta.
Today, I am grateful to be at a point in my life where I am able to impart knowledge, wisdom, skill & love to others and be a Warrior for God thru Women of Warrior Consciousness (WOWC). Empowering young girls, teens and women to stand for themselves when the word NO is not heard clearly. ~iRejoyce
Rita Joyce/GGM BKF Ken Wing Tai Ba
Founder: Om My Shea Body Butter
Josi Steve Muhammad of "Karate of The Gods" Conyers, GA
Kalvin Brooks of "Not Normal Fitness" Atlanta, GA
DeWayne Hendrix of "Roll 232 Boxing" Brunswick, GA
Our mission is to impact, empower and inspire every woman & young teen girl that we encounter.
Because in today's times especially, it is vitally important and necessary for every female to know how to protect, heal and defend herself.
Boldly Be You partners are trained, qualified, equipped and purposed to do just that through teaching and sharing martial arts (science) techniques, self-defense training and so much more. Spirit, Mind and Body development is our focus.
The positive benefits of overall health and wellness, proper diet and nutrition, and mental health therapy will regularly be tied into our workshop curriculum. We will help bring out your Warrior Within while encouraging you to embrace boldly being your true divine self.
The principles of having good character, self-love, self-confidence and self-respect will be exercised and exemplified through our positive leadership.
Boldly Be You Women’s Empowerment workshop will provide martial skills training that is designed to teach participants realistic techniques and skills to protect and defend themselves against an attacker. We will introduce them to effective ways to manage and reduce stress levels through breathing, meditation, etc.
Both Master instructors are certified with more than 80 years of collective documented experience and expertise and offer unique blends of traditional and non-traditional martial arts and weapons training. We are committed to sharing with our sisters the life skills that we have acquired through our own many years of personal training and development.
GM Diedra Cole’s background as a published Author and retired Police Detective coupled with GGM Rita Joyce’s professional background as a Master Reiki Healer Practitioner and Certified Massage Therapist will always ensure a unique twist to our Women’s Empowerment Workshop.
In summary, our goal is to teach and educate girls and women about the importance of making self-care and a balanced lifestyle a top priority to utilize for themselves and pass on to their children.