Clyde Worthen
Clyde Worthen

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Clyde Worthen

Inducted 2020

Hudson Judo Yudanshakai wrote

We wish to nominate Sensei Clyde Worthen, 6th Dan, for inclusion in the USJF Hall of Fame in the competitor, coaching, and program administrator categories.

Sensei Worthen has devoted his adult life to competing, coaching, and promoting our Olympic sport, Judo. Sensei Clyde began judo in 1964, at age 20. He trained under Sensei Yoshisada Yonezuka in Cranford, NJ. He also lived and trained in Japan for five months.

We at Hudson Judo Yudanshakai feel that Sensei Clyde Worthen continues to make a significant contribution to Judo with a capital “J”. He is a leader and a role model for all of us.

Competitive Achievements

  • Member of four U.S. World Judo teams – 1969, 1971, 1975, and 1977
  • Pan American gold medalist – 1976
  • North American Black Belt middleweight champion
  • U.S. Senior Nationals (when competition was open to international competitors) – middleweight champion – 1969
  • 18 consecutive New Jersey State championship titles
  • World Masters bronze medalist two times
  • National Masters middleweight champion 2001 – 2005

Coaching History

  • USA Judo certified Coach
  • Coached 1992 U.S. Olympic Team for pre-Olympic European training tour
  • Coached U.S. team for Rodriguez Cup in Cuba
  • Coached many students at national and international level, including:
    • Doug Nelson, who fought for the Olympic bronze medal in 1992. (Nelson lost to Korea.)
    • Alaine Abuan, who won the Pan Am silver medal
    • 10 or more senior competitors
    • Many more junior competitors

Community Judo Programs

Even while competing, Sensei Clyde ran a judo club, to which he devoted increasingly more time as he competed less. Due to his position with the Hudson County School of Technology, he is able to offer an affordable club to the community. As he stated, “Having a good club promotes judo.”

Sensei Clyde has the largest high school program in the country. He currently has 72 young people participating through the Hudson County Technical School’s high school program. “We have [instituted] judo as a recognizable part of the school and as a [money maker] because we have an open judo club that generates revenue.” This model is a multi-tier revenue generator that includes:

  • Membership
  • Rentals
  • Fund-raising
  • Merchandise

Program Administrator

Sensei Clyde has been a Hudson Judo Yudanshakai Promotion Board member for about 35 years.

He is a member of the Hudson Activities Fund (formerly Hudson Athletes Fund) Committee. Over the years, Sensei Clyde’s persistence paved the way for the creation of this Fund by Sensei Billy Martin. Sensei Clyde has been instrumental in helping to raise money and then approving disbursements to qualified applicants for reimbursement for travel and competition or training camp expenses. As Sensei Clyde says, “It’s always about the judo. You’re developing people and keeping [them] in judo and trying to develop the sport by providing excellent experiences at all levels.”