”[Being a] White belt doesn’t mean that you are at the bottom. You have made the step that hundreds of thousands only dream about. You, unlike those who only talk about it have conquered the first step to achieving your black belt…. Always remember that a frog too, was once just a tadpole.

Eternal Grand Master

H.U. Lee

1350 S. Clearview Ave.

Suite 101, Mesa, AZ 85209



Power Black Belt Academy

Master Susan McFarland - 7th Degree Black Belt

Owner and Program Director - Power Black Belt Academy

I began training in the American Taekwondo Association in October 1989.  I am currently a 7th degree black belt and a Certified Instructor.  What I like most about the ATA is the excellent quality of instruction in a broad spectrum of areas.  The ATA is very traditional in that they set high standards and value respect and discipline.  Life skills such as integrity, self-control, and courtesy are foundational to our programs.  My main focus in Taekwondo is helping students, Instructors and parents realize their dreams.  My favorite color belt rank is Green, because, at this rank, the students begin to see their growth and the greatness of their future possibilities.  My favorite weapon is the Gum Do (or Single-Blade Sword).  I enjoy this ancient and honored weapon because it requires strength, precision, discipline and graceful execution to achieve proper technique.

Michael McFarland 6th Degree Black Belt

Owner and Chief Instructor

I began training in the American Taekwondo Association in October 1989. I am currently a 6th degree Black Belt and Master Candidate. What I like most about the American Taekwondo Association is the student oath, otherwise known as the Songahm Spirit of Taekwondo. Living up to the ideals of the Songahm Spirit is a daily challenge, and a challenge that I gladly accept. My specialty in Taekwondo is helping others to overcome their fears and achieve their dreams. My most memorable color belt rank is green belt because I thought I knew everything. Of course, when I achieved my First Degree Black Belt, I realized that I actually knew nothing. Learning truly begins at First Degree Black Belt. My favorite weapons are confidence and knowledge. Confidence and knowledge are better than any weapon in a self-defense situation.

Saad Elaqad  - 5th Degree Black Belt

Certified Instructor

I began training in the American Taekwondo Association in May of 1998 the day after my birthday. I am currently a 5th degree black belt and a Certified Instructor. The thing I like most about the ATA is its inspiration. From seeing high ranks over seventy able to kick sharply above their heads to learning about new students and their motivations for pursuing Taekwondo. Back when I was younger, I thought Taekwondo was only good for self-defense, but I was definitely wrong. People join this organization for plenty of reasons: self-defense, exercise, friendship, self-confidence, life skills, family bonding, and the list goes on. My specialty in the martial arts is self-defense. With experience in Wrestling, Judo, and Taekwondo, I’ve sharpened my knowledge of self-defense from any attack. I like to have a fun with my teaching and incorporate my self-defense training in every class I teach. My most memorable colored belt experience was as a green belt, sparring my untouchable instructor for the first time. He awarded me with a stripe on my belt for being able to get one punch on him. Although I like all the weapons, my favorite is probably the Jahng Bong (bow staff). Discovering the amount of power I could transfer into the weapon, causing it to flex, really helped me make my choice.

Gina Crutchfield - 4th Degree Black Belt

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Specialty Certified Trainee Instructor

I began training in August of 1998, and today I am a 4th degree black belt.  I’ve been a student at Power Black Belt Academy for eighteen years, and an Instructor for more than fifteen years.  I’m also a frequent competitor at Tournaments.  In 2012, I won the triple crown in forms, sparring and weapons at ATA District Championships for the southwestern United States.  I am also active in Creative Taekwondo in ATA competition, both in forms and weapons. My favorite thing about Taekwondo is the precision of proper technique. I also study other styles of martial arts, but Power Black Belt Academy and the American Taekwondo Association are my home.