Who else qualifies as the same kind of super-shihan as Yamada? He is visiting my country in November and giving dan exams. It was helpful to me to learn that he has a kind of cross-border authority to award dan ranks. Also I was wondering why you said he was surprised to learn about this.
Well I am not the Hombu, but I think that Hiroshi Tada, Nobuyoshi Tamura, Kazuo Chiba, the late Tohei Akira and Mitsunari Kanai, Seiichi Sugano and Katsuaki Asai qualify. Yamada Sensei was surprised to learn about this because he never knew: he had never been told until recently.