Stephen Olivier

I started Martial Arts at the tender age of 5. Back in 1977 Martial Arts was not a well-known sport in South Africa. I was lucky enough to have Judo as an extra mural activity. My first big achievement in the sport, was when I received my Junior Black Belt under the best Sensei in Cape Town, Sensei Butcher.

Although my love for the sport remained strong and true, I decided to start tenpin bowling in 1986. I went on to excel at this, and by the age of 19 I was ranked number 2 in the country.

Somehow we always make our way back to the things we love. This is how I finally made my way back to the Martial Arts world in 2012, where my roots were planted, many years prior. I started with Muay Thai, Boxing and MMA under the wing of legend coach and owner of Panther, Anthony Kettle. In 2013 I completed a course under MMA SA as referee and judge and not long after I was honored to be nominated as the Western Province Kickboxing Officiating Commissioner.

Things only went upwards from there. In 2014 I started officiating at EFC, which was a major stepping stone for me. Knowing that I am part of the biggest Martial Arts Organization in South Africa, is definitely one of the highlights of my Martial Arts career.

There was no stopping me after that. I went on to complete my licensing as a referee and judge through SAKA (South African Kick Boxing Association) Coming up from a WP level as Head Official, my Officials and I were used at a Pro level under SAKA.

In 2016 I passed the IMMAF (International Mixed Martial Arts Federation) course as a judge, which is recognized worldwide. Later on in 2016, the year that changed everything for me, I also completed the Last Fighter Standing course as a judge and became the head judge for the Cape Town and JHB/Pretoria leg of the competition.

I might be a single dad, but I am honored to have my kids support me through my whole Martial Arts journey. There is nothing I love more than the two of them and it is such a blessing to know that they are a part of my journey. I do this all for the love of the sport and know that I am able to make a difference and give back to the fastest growing sport in South Africa.

My goal in life is to be the best possible version of me. I try and excel in everything I put my mind to and always try my utmost best to be the best possible leader, role model and friend, as an individual as well as an Official.

I am a very ethical person, and I strongly believe that you cannot be biased when it comes to this sport. I believe in equality and consistency more than anything.

We have become a family within the Martial Arts Community. I believe our “family unit” makes for better quality officiating and a more enjoyable experience, when we do the hard work that many, at often times, forget that we do.