As he entered his fifth consecutive decade of unbroken martial arts training, the world began to take notice of the vast amounts of knowledge, experience, and skill that Shihan Crosswell had accumulated over the years. The International Seibukan Martial Arts Association, headquartered in Kyoto, Japan, recognized his contributions to both the art of Shito-ryu karate and Okinawan kobudo by awarding him the ultimate rank of 10th dan, Hanshi, in Shito-ryu Karate and 9th dan, Kyoshi, in Okinawan kobudo. It was a spectacular achievement for any martial artist, but it was truly unprecedented for this American instructor to finally be given his place in the history of Japanese martial arts by such a highly respected and staunchly traditional budo organization.
The Seibukan went even further, however, granting Shihan Crosswell an 8th dan rank in Hakutsuru-ryu (White Crane) karate in 2002 for his years of dedication to the style—hoping that he might join other foreign-born masters in preserving this precious and rapidly fading piece of Japan’s martial arts history. Shihan Crosswell was selected for the honor not only for his deep knowledge of the performance and application of Hakutsuru forms and techniques, but also for his extensive research on how the style had influenced the development of Shito-ryu karate and many other martial arts styles. To add further dignity to this rare achievement, his rank was enthusiastically endorsed by the renowned Meitoku Yagi, a legend of Okinawan Goju-ryu karate.
In light of his far-reaching accomplishments in the art of Okinawan kobudo, Shihan Crosswell was finally promoted to the rank of 10th dan, Hanshi in the art by Hanshi George Alexander, Director of the International Shorin-ryu Karate Kobudo Federation, in 2007. This honor came on the heels of an article in the UK's Traditional Karate magazine that heralded Shihan Crosswell as "the most knowledgeable weapons master in the USA".
By now highly sought-after as one of the world’s premier traditional martial arts experts, Shihan Crosswell taught throughout the United States as well as in Europe, South America, and Asia-headlining seminars and workshops around the globe. Still, amidst his worldwide popularity and hectic schedule, Shihan Crosswell continued to run the headquarters of the International Shito-ryu Karate Federation and the International Kobudo Association through the Arizona Budokan, patiently handing down his tremendous store of knowledge to the students in his home dojo. At a time in his career when many other high-ranking martial artists are content to sit back and take a passive approach to their own training, Shihan Crosswell never stopped actively seeking out new karate, kobudo, and sword information-all the while devoting his heart and soul to nurturing individual students at the Arizona Budokan.