Alan “Gumby” Marques was born in Daly City, CA and attended Catholic school for his entire scholastic career being an alumni of Our Lady of Mercy, St. Ignatius College Prep and finally Santa Clara University. He had his first job at the age of 14 scooping ice cream at Baskin Robbins in Westlake, which he describes as the easiest job in the world for 50 weeks out of the year as Daly City is perpetually 50 degrees F and overcast at that time, and the hardest job he ever in the two weeks when a Daly City Heat Wave would bring temperatures up to 70. Gumby worked through college at the Macy’s in Valley Fair Domestics Department (towels and bed linen) actually becoming one of the top sales performers on the West Coast and was named a Ralph Lauren specialist, despite to this day never owning anything from the label. 

After university Gumby found himself in the Silicon Valley working in Software Quality Assurance and making a rapid rise to middle management at a string of companies which are mostly not around anymore, with the lone exception of Apple Computer (although at that time the company was really struggling). It was also after school that he discovered Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as Ralph Gracie opened up a studio in Mountain View which was conveniently on Gumby’s commute; Gumby signed up within the first month of the school’s opening and the rest is history as they say.

In 1997 arch rival and better friend Scotty Nelson suggested that the two should start an internet company of their own as a side project for what was a full blown Jiu Jitsu obsession at that point and the created OntheMat, which was not only one of the first Jiu Jitsu sites on the internet, it was one of the first sites on the Internet to feature regular Video Uploads. At some point both men decided to make OntheMat their full time careers and it took them literally around the world, being one of the most famous sites (and personalities) on burgeoning Jiu Jitsu and MMA scene.

In 2009 Gumby opened Heroes Martial Arts to bring Jiu Jitsu to downtown San Jose which has since taught thousand of people, produced champions on the competition circuit, graduated 30 black belts and counting, and opened multiple locations. Heroes maintains a great vibe of above all and there is a diverse group training on the mats every day.

Gumby accepted an invitation to join the board of the San Jose Downtown Association which gave him exposure to the workings of everyone downtown from businesses small and large, to non-profits and developers and artists and all of the agents that make a great and diverse downtown. In 2022 he began serving as the Board President and is committed to a vision where everyone can uniquely express themselves in their downtown. Gumby is passionate about using his experiences and status to help others, while remaining curious and learning and taking on new challenges.