Nearly $60,000 in scholarships were awarded at the annual Illinois Shotokan Booster Club Karate Awards Banquet Nov. 12 at the Meadows Club in Rolling Meadows.

The event, now in its 39th year, awards scholarships to Illinois Shotokan Karate Clubs students who take its karate classes at 75 park districts across the Chicago area and demonstrate commitment, achievement and volunteerism.

One of these scholarship is near and dear to founder John DiPasquale's heart -- the Jennifer Malloy Scholarship. Jennifer was a student at the Palatine dojo when she was just a teenager in the mid-1980s and had been diagnosed with cancer.

Though her health continued to deteriorate through treatments, Jennifer did not stop training or competing. The scholarship was created before she passed away in 1987 to help her family afford mounting legal bills.

For the last 30 years, an ISKC student who has demonstrated the highest level of leadership and determination is awarded the Jennifer Malloy Scholarship. This year's winner was Ryan Brown, a Gurnee resident who trains at the Palatine location.

In all, there were 103 academic and travel scholarships awarded to students that help ISKC students afford college, as well as the cost to attend and compete in national and international karate competitions.

The booster club is the nonprofit arm of the Illinois Shotokan Karate Club that hosts yearly fundraisers to support the scholarships awarded at the event.

"Our banquet is very special for everyone who is a part of ISKC. We are steeped in the tradition of giving back to our students and families who have helped us to grow throughout our 39-year history," DiPasquale said. "Our booster club works extremely hard each year to ensure we can provide this very important assistance to our students."

A full list of the winners from the suburbs and Chicago can be found at

For more information about the Illinois Shotokan Karate Club, and to learn more upcoming classes that start in January, visit or call (847) 359-0666.

Founded in 1978, Illinois Shotokan Karate Club is headquartered in Palatine and has grown to serve 75 park districts throughout the Chicago area. The club offers weekly classes for children and adults taught by knowledgeable instructors, as well as opportunities to compete in tournaments.

In addition to four local tournaments each year, the club also offers the opportunity for students to compete in national, and international tournaments.