Butokukai is Japanese and means martial arts association. Bu (warrior, weapon), Toku (virtue, morals), Kai (association).
The name Butokukai dates back to the Dai Nippon Butokukai which was founded in 1895. Our grand master Hanshi Richard Kim became a member of the DNBK in 1939 (Kyoto, Japan). In 1945 the DNBK was banned by the allied forces. After the USA and Japan had signed the peace treaty the DNBK was revived as a private organization presided over by Ono Kumao.
Being a close friend of Hanshi Ono Kumao, Hanshi Richard Kim was asked 1959 to found the DNBK outside Japan. Thus the Zen Bei Butoku Kai was born in San Francisco the same year. Growing international relations beyond the USA necessitated the foundation of the Butokukai International in 1976. After 60 years grand master Richard Kim left the DNBK in 1999 due to association politics.
In 2006, Technical Directors Hanshi Jean Chalamon (Butokukai Europe) and Hanshi Rod Sanford (Zen Bei Butoku Kai) changed the name Butokukai International to KOKUSAI BUTOKUKAI and the Badge at the suggestion of Secretary-General Stephan Peitz. As a consequence, the emblem of the association was changed to distinguish itself from the DNBK.