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Photos by Heidi Schweiker.

Mae Hsu

Along with her sister Anne, Mae Hsu began training in wushu in 1986. She has traveled to China twice to study the art from renowned coaches and athletes. Competing nationally and internationally since the early nineties, Mae is a four-time member of the United States Wushu Team. She has represented the team in world competitions in Malaysia, Italy, and Canada, and was the Women's Second All-Around Champion at the 1998 Pan American Games. Earlier this year, Mae was the Intercollegiate Women's All-Around Champion for the second year in a row. In 1998, the United States Wushu Federation recognized Mae as the Wushu Athlete of the Year and in 1997, she received the Women Martial Artist Excellence Award. Mae has a bachelor's degree from the University of California, Berkeley in economics and psychology. She currently works as an economic analyst in the East Bay.

Brandon Sugiyama

Brandon Sugiyama was first introduced to wushu in 1994, through his college friend while attending the University of Oregon. After seeing his first Jet Li movie, he knew that he made the right choice in wushu. Brandon began as a founding member of the UO Wushu Club, and during his senior year, became head instructor successfully leading his team in national and regional competitions. In 1996, he traveled to Beijing, China to train and has since captured the titles of National and Western Regional Champion. A spot on the US Wushu team had seemed like a far off dream, but after graduating in 1997, Brandon set his goals high training seriously with his eyes set on the 1999 team trials. This past May, Brandon realized his goals by qualifying for the United States Wushu Team by taking first place in menís Taijiquan. Brandon has a bachelorís degree from the University of Oregon in planning, public policy and management. He currently works for a web design company based in Emeryville, CA and is an avid fly fisher.