August Wallén is the founder and first President of IMMAF from 29th of February 2012 through to 30th of September 2013. He was awarded the title of Honorary President at IMMAF’s first General Assembly on 12th July 2015.
Wallén is a pioneer in European martial arts, and one of the individuals riduals responsible for bringing MMA to Sweden. The 45 year old started training judo at age 12, kyokushin at 15 and Muay Thai (Thai boxing) at 16. He opened a martial arts academy in Gothenburg in 1992, which later became known as Gladius MMA.
Wallén first came in contact with what was to be called MMA in 1995, and he opened Fighter Centre, one of the biggest centres in the Nordics, in 2000. Today he is the chief instructor at Gladius MMA. He has trained and coached several prominent elite athletes, including MMA athlete Alexander Gustafsson. As an athlete, Wallén competed in Shootfighting in the late 90’s and early 2000’s. He began his professional MMA career in 2006, and holds an eight win and one loss record (the loss was a decision to the Japanese veteran Yuki Kondo). He was The Zone FC middleweight champion.
Wallén played a prominent role in saving MMA in Sweden in 2006, when proposed legislation sought to modify the existing ban on professional boxing to include MMA. Wallén founded the Swedish MMA Federation (SMMAF) in 2007 to oversee and sanction MMA, and served as the Chairman, a position he held until 2011. During this time, the Federation accomplished what many would have thought as impossible, including the recognition of MMA as a sport, establishment of an Amateur MMA league, and permission for events to have matches under the Unified Rules of MMA.
Wallén has served on the board of the Swedish Budo & Martial Arts Federation for several years. He has also served on the board of the Swedish Submission Wrestling Federation and was responsible for bringing Muay Thai (thai boxing) into the Swedish Budo & Martial Arts Federation. Professionally Wallén has founded and operated several companies in different business areas from 1992 and onwards.
Wallén was awarded the Leader of the Year at the Swedish Martial Arts awards in 2011