Grandmaster Brian Gray, who founded the Shao Lin San Kung Fu Temple in 1971, is considered by most experts to be the world’s leading authority on the subject of the Chinese Iron Palm. He has been called the “Father of the Iron Palm in America,” because he was the first person to lift the veil of secrecy and reveal the ancient training methods of this well-guarded, secret art to the general public. Before Grandmaster Gray began publishing the knowledge of this art, the Chinese Iron Palm was known to only a handful of Kung Fu masters worldwide and was destined to become lost forever, since these masters would have preferred to take the knowledge of this art with them to their graves. Grandmaster Gray wrestled with the very difficult decision to break with centuries of unforgiving tradition that forbade teaching outsiders, and finally decided that he would rather see this art brought back from the brink of extinction. He published his first article on the subject for Inside Kung Fu magazine in 1985. Thousands of requests came in overnight from around the world, and Grandmaster Gray decided that he would have to stay involved from then on to make sure that the ever-present frauds would not destroy the validity of this ancient art by their misrepresentations. Due to the large number of continuous requests, Grandmaster Gray wrote articles for the magazines for over twenty-five years, published books and produced videos to help people who sincerely wanted to learn the art correctly.
In the 1970’s, while he was a national Kung Fu champion, Grandmaster Gray was seen occasionally giving Iron Palm demonstrations at major martial arts events. At the time, he was the only person giving public demonstrations of the art, and since the Iron Palm was such a guarded secret, he was considered a rare sight. Now, many years later, with millions of readers around the world, Grandmaster Gray has influenced the martial arts world so much that today it is more common to see people demonstrating the Iron Palm in breaking competitions than the hand methods that used to prevail. In January 2003, Inside Kung Fu magazine named him one of the “30 Most Influential Masters of the Past 30 Years.”
Grandmaster Gray has passed the responsibilities of the renowned Shao Lin San Kung Fu Temple on to two of his top students, whom he elevated to the level of Master upon the successful completion by each of them of a thorough and demanding, fifteen-year training and testing regimen. The West Coast branch is headed by Master Donna Gilbert in Santa Maria, California, and the East Coast branch is headed by Master Ross Kellin in Lakeland, Florida.
Grandmaster Gray and Jackie Chan on the set of "Rush Hour"
Grandmaster Gray and Jet Li at the premier of "Black Mask" in New York