ijs Greg Cody Keith
Mullett Paul Rajesh Stan
Deuby Constance Chris Eddie
Brian Charrie Lia Peter
John Frank Margaret   YUDANSHA
Todd Robinson Andrew KungFu
Wayne BigAl Lisa
sifu

Ilene J. Smoger

アイリン・スモーガー

Ilene J. Smoger Sensei, the director of training for the Club, who has been training since 1975, holds the rank of Nanadan (7th dan) given to her directly by Eizo Shimabukuro O'Sensei in the Shorin Ryu Karate system. O'Sensei also awarded her the rank of Sandan (3rd dan) in Toei Jujutsu. Smoger Sensei also holds the rank of Nanadan (7th dan) in Shudokan Karate, under the late Shibucho Walter Todd.

Smoger Sensei began her martial arts training in Ann Arbor, Michigan, in 1975 under Garrick Hu Sensei, the Director of Training at the Asian Martial Arts Studio.  She was also instructed there by Karl Scott III Sensei, who is currently Co-Shibucho in the U.S. Shudokan Karatedo system.  Smoger Sensei continued her training with Barbara Christensen Sensei from Ann Arbor, Michigan. Smoger Sensei was Christensen Sensei's first student.  Barbara Christensen Sensei, who holds the rank of Nanadan (7th dan) by Shimabukuro O'Sensei, Yondan (4th dan) by Todd Sensei and the rank of Shodan (1st dan) in Aikido, continues to be Smoger Sensei's primary instructor.

Smoger Sensei teaches martial arts all over the country. She has instructed at Pacific Association of Women Martial Artists (PAWMA), National Women's Martial Arts Federation (NWMAF), Association of Women Martial Arts Instructor's (AWMAI) conferences (in 2007, she was co-coordinator of the AWMAI conference) and all of the Okinawan Karate Club national seminars.  She has been  honored by the World Martial Arts Hall of Fame as "The Woman of the Year in the Martial Arts."  Additionally, she received the Sensei of Merit award at the International Martial Arts Symposium in South Carolina.

Under Smoger Sensei's leadership, OKCD is one of Dallas' oldest traditional dojos, and the Club has promoted over 72 black belts throughout the years.  Additionally, there are four active affiliated dojos with OKCD in the cities of Atlanta, Frisco, Lantana, and San Francisco.

Smoger Sensei is a personal injury attorney at the Smoger Law Firm and an independent real estate broker with Smoger Realty

She can be reached at ilene - at - okinawankarateclub.com 

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Donna Mullett

ダーナ・モレット

Donna Mullett Sensei graduated from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst with B.A.'s in Japanese and Art.  Following graduation, Mullett Sensei moved to Japan to improve her language skills. From 1986-1989 she lived in Sapporo, Japan teaching English. She began her karate training in 1986 by joining a Wado-kai dojo. At the same time she also trained in a style that was similar to Goju Ryu. The school was called Ryukookan. Just as she left Japan she achieved the rank of Shodan (1st dan) in both styles. After receiving her M.A. from Yale in East Asian Studies, Mullett Sensei moved to Dallas to teach at St. Mark's School of Texas, where she teaches Humanities and Japanese. This brought her to the Okinawan Karate Club of Dallas where she has trained and taught since 1991. After starting over as a white belt she is now a Rokudan, (6th dan) in both Shorin Ryu and Shudokan and a Sandan (3rd dan) in Toei Jujutsu.  Mullett Sensei teaches the Monday night open class, youth beginner classes and coordinates youth and adult mudansha testing.

Donna can be reached at  donna - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

 

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Sean Deuby

ショーン・デゥービー

Sean Deuby Sensei has practiced and taught Okinawan Shorin Ryu karate since 1979. He holds the rank of Rokudan (6th degree black belt) in Shobayashi Shorin Ryu. The late Walter Todd personally conferred the rank of Yondan (4th dan) in his Shudokan style to Deuby Sensei in 1998. He also studies under Hanshi (10th dan) Seikichi Iha, Director, North American Beikoku Shido-kan Association (Shorin Ryu), whenever possible. Hanshi Iha was Deuby Sensei's original instructor in 1979 until the rank of Nidan (2nd dan), which he granted in 1984.  He is co-founder of the Okinawan Karate Club of Dallas, where he has taught since its inception. Sean taught the dojo’sTuesday night class for over 20 years.

Sean is an identity architect for Edgile, Inc., where he focuses on connecting Fortune 500 companies to Microsoft cloud solutions such as Windows Azure. He has been a MVP (Most Valuable Professional) for directory services since 2004, a distinction awarded annually by Microsoft to only 70 professionals in the world.  He writes and speaks at conferences both nationally and internationally on the topic.

Sean can be reached at sean - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Brian McCauley

ブライアン・マッカリー

Brian McCauley Sensei, Sempai of the dojo, joined the Okinawan Karate Club of Dallas in 1986, where he began his training in the martial arts. McCauley Sensei was awarded the rank of Shodan (1st dan) in Shorin Ryu and Shudokan karate in 1989. Since then, he has taught the adult classes at Okinawan Karate Club of Dallas and currently teaches an intermediate class. He also gives special seminars at the club with a particular interest in teaching bunkai.  McCauley Sensei currently holds the rank of Rokudan (6th dan) in Shobayashi Shorin Ryu and  Shudokan karatedo.

Outside the dojo, Brian is The National Accounts Manager for Grand Bonanza International. 

Brian can be reached at brian - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

 
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 John Mascio

ジョン・マシオ

John Mascio Sensei  began studying martial arts while an undergraduate at Kent State University in 1982. In graduate school, he studied Isshin Ryu and decided to make martial arts an important part of his life.  He joined the Okinawan Karate Club of Dallas when he relocated to Dallas in 1990.

John was awarded his Shodan (1st dan) in Shudokan by Shibucho Walter Todd and his Shodan in Shorin Ryu from Smoger Sensei in 1994.  He currently holds the rank of Sandan (3rd dan) in Toei Jujutsu, and Godan (4th dan) in Shorin Ryu and Shudokan Karate.  He teaches the Saturday Jujutsu class, along with Chesley Sensei, as well as assists in many of the adult classes.

John has also studied other martial arts styles, including Isshin Ryu, Kung Fu, Tae Kwon Do, Jujitsu, Aikido, Aiki-jujitsu, Tai Chi, Judo, Jeet Kune Doe, Wing Chun, Bo-jitsu, and cane.  John teaches the Saturday morning adult class and helps in other classes.

John is an IT professional, currently working for a financial billing and remittance processing company as the manager of production support and database administration. He is also a college professor ,teaching math, computer science and information systems courses.  John graduated from Kent State with a BS in Applied Math/Computer Science, as well as an MA in Computer Science.  He has since earned an MBA and is working toward a Doctorate in Management. 

John attributes much of his success in life to the discipline and training he has received in the martial arts, as well as the support of his wife and family, who encourage his studies. He feels incredibly fortunate to have trained under Sensei Smoger, and with all the talented Yundansha of the Okinawan Karate Club.  Over the years, they have become a second family to him and his wife.

As community service, John is one of the City of Allen’s Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) trainers.  He also provides emergency communications assistance for Allen CERT, the Collin County Medical Reserve Corps and Collin County Amateur Radio Emergency Service.

He lives with his wife, Charrie, another Yudansha at OKCD, and their three cats in a north Dallas suburb. 

John can be reached at john - at - okinawankarateclub.com.  

 

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Todd Sherry

ッド・シェリー

Todd Sherry Sensei  joined the Okinawan Karate Club of Dallas, along with his son Cale in 1995. Todd was exposed to karate in his teens, when he trained in Shito-Ryu Karate at the Dallas Navel Air Station under Sensei Fred Givens.

 

He earned his Shodan (1st dan) in 1999 in both Shorin Ryu Karatedo and Shudokan Karatedo and currently holds the rank of Godan (5th dan).  He received one of the last Shodan certificates under the late Shibucho Walter Todd.  Todd's son Cale is a Shodan at OKCD.   

Todd enjoys karate as a source of personal energy and balance in his life. He instructs the advanced youth karate classes where he enjoys seeing the growth of body, mind, and spirit within his students.

Todd is an Aircraft Maintenance Manager for Cook Canyon Ranch Aviation. He and his wife Christine live in Quinlan, Texas.  

 

Todd can be reached at   todd - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Wayne Murphy  

ウェーン・マーフィー

Wayne Murphy Senseifirst experienced martial arts at an early age through his father John Murphy Sensei, a Nanadan (7 th degree black belt) in Shorin Ryu Okinawa Karate, and a direct Yudansha (black belt), under Grand Master Eizo Shimabukuro.  As a child, Wayne would attend his father’s adult classes and special trainings where he learned some of the basic techniques and forms of Karate.  However, it was his father’s deep appreciation and respect for O’Sensei Shimabukuro and traditional Okinawan Karate that left the biggest impression on him. 

Wayne became actively involved in martial arts around 1989 joining an organization that engaged in freestyle combat utilizing replicated mêlée style weapons from the renaissance era.  After a decade of learning through trial and error, Wayne wanted a more structured training.  He therefore sought out a traditional Shorin Ryu Karate dojo.

In January of 1999 Wayne joined the Okinawan Karate Club of Dallas.  Here he began training under the direction of Sensei Ilene Smoger in both Shorin Ryu, as taught by Grand Master Eizo Shimabukuro, and Shudokan Karate, as passed down by Shibu-cho Walter Todd.  Wayne became an avid practitioner and in June 2001 was awarded his Shodan (1st degree black belt) which he had the honor of receiving directly from Grand Master Shimabukuro. 

Wayne currently holds the rank of Godan (5th degree black belt) in both Shorin Ryu and Shudokan Karate.  He continues to train at the OKCD where he has been teaching the Wednesday youth and adult classes since 2002.  Additionally, Wayne founded the Okinawan Karate Club of Lantana in 2009 where he also actively teaches a youth program.   

Wayne considers himself very fortunate to have trained under Sensei Smoger and the many senior Yudansha and members of the Okinawan Karate Club.  Through his experiences at OKCD Wayne has developed his own sincere appreciation and respect for his Sensei, fellow karateka, and traditional Okinawan Karate.

When not training or teaching martial arts, Wayne enjoys spending time with his wife and two beautiful daughters.  He also provides representation and brokerage services in commercial real estate nationally through KW Commercial.   

Wayne can be reached at  wayne - at - okinawankarateclub.com

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Greg Chesley  

グレッグ・チェズリー

G reg Chesley Sensei began his training with OKCD in January of 1999. His first induction into the martial arts began in the late 1980’s studying Goshin Jitsu in Erie, PA. Greg received his Shodan (first dan) in 2003 and in 2004 received his Nidan (second dan) in Shorin Ryu and Toei Jujutsu directly from Grand Master Ezio Shimabukuro in Okinawa.  Currently, He holds the rank of Yondan (fourth dan) in Shorin Ryu Karate and Shudokan Karate and a Sandan (third dan) in Toei Jujutsu.

He attributes much of his success to his valued Sensei at OKCD and gives special thanks to:

Deuby Sensei: For being there in the beginning and showing me a path to walk.

Mullett Sensei: For the support and encouragement to never give up.

Smoger Sensei: For letting me know that the word “family" can mean much more.

Greg is one of the Intermediate Youth class teachers and teaches the adult Jujutsu class with John Mascio Sensei.  In addition, Greg-san assists and covers when needed in the adult classes at OKCD.

Greg holds a Master’s Degree in Health Administration (MHA) from the University of Southern California.  His undergraduate degree is from Mercyhurst University in Erie, PA.  In addition to his MHA, Greg holds a Bachelors of Arts with a double major in Finance and Marketing and a minor in Business Administration.

In 1996, he relocated to Dallas and began his career in the healthcare field as a staff accountant. He worked for Texas Cardiac Associates as the Chief Executive Officer until their acquisition. In 2015, Greg became the Practice Administrator – Dallas Market, covering over 8 locations and 14 specialty providers, for Tenet Healthcare. 

Greg also is the Owner/Operator of Tonbo Martial Arts SupplyHe supplies much of the dojo with equipment and weapons. 

Greg can be reached at  greg - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Constance An

コンスタンス・アン

 Constance An Sensei joined OKCD in January 2001. Prior to joining, she worked part time for 5 years as a Personal Trainer and Spin Instructor for the YMCA and a private gym. She had always wanted to do martial arts since elementary school but was not allowed. Throughout her youth, any martial arts was forbidden so she secretly checked out karate books at her school library. As a New Years resolution she enrolled at OKCD and learned that no karate book can compare to having actual OKCD instructors show you the way. Satisfying a long yearning for martial arts, she has found her home here at the OKCD. Constance received her Shodan (1st dan) in Shorin Ryu and Shudokan Karatedo in March, 2005.  She currently holds the rank of Yondan (4th dan). Having a mechanical engineering and fitness background, Constance enjoys breaking down karate into basic physics for powerfully efficient movements.  Constance assists with the youth classes.

Constance works at a global telecommunications company.  When she is not practicing karate, she enjoys spending time with her family, weight lifting and running.

Constance can be reached at constance - at - okinawankarateclub.com

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 Paul Klotz

ポール・クローツ

Paul Klotz Sensei began his training with OKCD in July of 1999. His initiation into martial arts began with training in Judo as a young teen, where he achieved the rank of brown belt. He had various brushes with informal training in karate over the years but did not become fully hooked until joining OKCD. Paul attributes getting hooked to the enormous wealth of knowledge accumulated and generously shared by the members of OKCD along with a supportive environment that allowed him to follow his own path. Paul earned his Shodan (1st dan) in Shorin Ryu and Shudokan Karatedo in January 2003, Nidan (2nd dan) in March 2005 and Sandan (3rd dan) in January of 2010.

Paul teaches the Thursday night adult class along with Al Alexander Sensei. Paul’s focus in class is on learning and improving basic techniques, form, awareness and practical application.

Outside the dojo Paul works for a technology solutions integrator.

Paul can be reached at paul - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Charrie Mascio

チャリト・マシオ

C harrie Mascio Senseiafter taking a Karate Aerobics class for a couple of months, finally decided to join OKCD in May 2001.  Growing up in a Philippine community with a large number of Chinese, she became fascinated with the martial arts.  During her anesthesiology residency, she was recruited to move to the U.S. as a physical therapist, and eventually met her husband, John, who exposed her to Judo and Okinawan Karate.  In 2006, Charrie earned her Shodan (1st dan),  2010 she earned her Nidan (2nd dan) and her Sandan (3rd dan) in 2013 in both Shorin Ryu and Shudokan Karatedo.

Since becoming a brown belt, she had developed an interest in weapons, with the bo being her favorite, especially bo kumite.  She wanted to expand on her knowledge of the bo, as well as some other weapons not currently practiced at OKCD.  Charrie also has some background in Judo.  Charrie teaches the Saturday morning adult class and taught the Sunday Yoga class.  She has taught at the National Women in Martial Arts (NWMAF) Special Training, Association of Women Martial Arts Instructor's (AWMAI) conference, and at some of the OKC ST seminars.

Her other interests include exercising, especially Pilates and yoga, languages, old TV series, and reading.  She attributes much of her power to the core strength that Pilates develops.

Charrie is a physical therapist and works in various facilities around the D/FW metroplex.  She is also a registered massage therapist.

Charrie is married to John, who is also a black belt at OKCD; and lives with him and their three cats in a north Dallas suburb.

Charrie can be reached at charrie - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Frank Gannon

フランク・ガンノン

F rank Gannon Sensei first studied martial arts in college at the Vanderbilt University Tae Kwan Do Club in Nashville, Tennessee. Over the next several years, he "dabbled" in various martial arts, but did not take things seriously until coming to the Okinawan Karate Club of Dallas. As Frank puts it, "Before coming to OKCD, I had a very nice collection of yellow belts." 

Frank first visited OKCD during a Tuesday night class in August 2002 and was sold immediately. The combination of serious martial arts training under skilled and experienced instructors in a fun and friendly environment was exactly what he was looking for. Frank has been training at OKCD ever since.

In addition to Karate, Frank also studies Toei Jujutsu with Greg Chesley Sensei and John Mascio Sensei.  He also studies Arnis with Guru Bruce Jenkins and now currently runs the Arnis program. Frank also assists with the kids’ classes.

Frank holds the ranks of Sandan (3rd dan) in Shobayashi Shorin Ryu and Shudokan Karate and Shodan (1st dan) in Toei Jujutsu.  He also holds the rank of Senior Technical Advisor in Arnis.

Frank’s favorite aspect of the study of martial arts is the way that it blends athletics, self defense, philosophy, and the arts all into one. Frank believes that the emphasis martial arts places on courtesy, hard work and persistence in the face of adversity is a lesson of value to anyone that is willing to listen.

Frank is a licensed attorney practicing law in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. He is also a certified high school math teacher.  

Frank can be reached  at  frank - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Sean Robinson

ショーン・ロビンソン

Sean Robinson Sensei , with his interest in karate peaking in late December of 2002, sought out a karate school teaching the Shorin Ryu system--based on his father’s advice.

Prior to his first class at OKCD (January 2, 2003), his exposure to karate consisted primarily of sporadic discussions with his father, who holds the rank of Yondan (4th dan) in Goju Ryu Shoreikan, and is the direct student of Seikichi Toguchi (himself a direct student of Goju Ryu founder, Chojun Miyagi).  

Currently holding the rank of Sandan (3rd dan) in both Shorin Ryu and Shudokan, Sean was promoted to the rank of Shodan (1st dan) in 2008 (January) in both styles. 

Prior to OKCD, Sean’s athletic interests were primarily expressed through two other passions: football (where he was voted to the All-Central Texas 1st Team as a high school senior) and track; having competed in the Texas High School State Track & Field Championships prior to training as a member of the University of Texas Track & Field squad as a freshman. 

He considers the overflowing and selfless generosity of OKCD (in and out of the dojo) to be a rare and true treasure. 

Sean earned his undergraduate and masters degrees in accounting from the University of Texas at Austin, McCombs School of Business.

Sean can be reached at  seanr - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Al Alexander

アル・アレクサンダー

Al Alexander Sensei  had his first exposure to martial arts at the age of eight when his parents enrolled him on Kodokan Judo classes on Randolph Air Force base in San Antonio, TX.  Shortly after his first promotion, Al’s father received transfer orders which ended his training in Judo, but the interest in martial arts had been seeded.  Some years later, while in high school, he was first exposed to Okinawan Karate when he began studying Uechi Ryu.  Graduation and moving off to college cut short his training at Gokyu.  It took some twenty plus years to find his way to OKCD.  He has enjoyed his training at OKCD, learning a great many things.  Among those was the day he realized that Karate training is not truly an individual endeavor, and would like to thank all of his fellow karateka for their selfless contributions to his training.

Al has always enjoyed teaching, and believes that the best way to really learn something is to teach it.  Because of that belief, he has gravitated toward teaching the things he really enjoys.  For some years he was a skydiving instructor, and a certified Motorcycle Safety Foundation certified instructor teaching novice riders to ride safely.  In September of 2006 Paul Klotz Sensei invited Al to be his assistant teacher in the 7:00 Thursday class.  Al has found it very rewarding to work with the class in that capacity, and always considered it an honor to be there.

Al has worked in purchasing, supply chain management, and project planning for most of his adult life, and when he’s not at work, or the dojo he has a wide array of interest.  He loves riding motorcycles of any sort, is a big movie buff, enjoys archery, photography, and just about anything that involves being outdoors.

Al can be reached at aru - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Cody Rogers 

コデ ロジーズ

Cody Rogers Sensei  joined the Okinawan Karate Club in the summer of 2004. He spent a few months studying as much as he could about different styles and schools before deciding on the OKCD. 

Cody tested for Shodan (1st dan) in June of 2010. He was promoted to Sandan (3rd dan) in 2015 in both Shorin Ryu and Shudokan Karate. Cody assists in several classes and teaches an older beginner youth class. He also assists the senior youth karateka with extra training sessions in the months leading up to major tests. Cody credits Smoger Sensei's leadership and emphasis on continued learning and growth as the reason he and so many other yudansha have continued to stay for decades.

Cody is currently employed with the Gaylord Texan, and is enrolled at UTD, working on earning a teaching certification.

Cody can be reached at cody - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Rajesh Chathapuram  

ラジェシュ・チャタプラム

Rajesh Chathapuram Sensei grew up watching martial arts movies, especially South Indian movies involving “Kalaripayattu,” which is considered the mother of all martial arts and can be traced back 3000 years. Due to stringent educational requirements in school and college, there
was no time for Rajesh to explore the realms of martial arts.

Finally Rajesh’s dream came true when he and his wife Veena discovered OKCD in Farmers Branch, TX back in 2003. He’s thankful to his wife for being instrumental in providing constant motivation, support and being extremely patient til today. After his first week at OKCD trying to get to know all the teachers, he started seriously training under the leadership of Ilene Smoger Sensei . Rajesh attributes the skills and techniques he has learned to each and every Sensei at OKCD. The unfathomable amount of commitment from all the teachers at OKCD has kindled a profound interest in him to continue this tradition. He credits his disciplined and organized life to both his parents.

In 2011, Rajesh earned his Shodan (1st dan) in Shorin Ryu Karate and Shudokan Karate and currently is a Sandan (3rd dan).

Rajesh holds Bachelor’s degree in Electronics & Communications Engineering, and Master’s degree in Computer Science, Business Administration, and Accounting. Rajesh holds several
professional certifications as well.

Outside the dojo, Rajesh works for Oil & Gas Corporation in Plano, TX.

His other interests include swimming, playing cricket, volleyball, tennis, traditional archery and most importantly “lego blocks time” with his kids. Rajesh was born in India and moved to the US in 1995. He enjoys the company of his wife Veena, his two children – Shashvat and Shashank, and his parents.

Rajesh can be reached at rajesh - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Lia Wilson

リア・ウィルソン

Lia Wilson Sensei joined the Okinawan Karate Club in January of 2006 with no previous martial arts training or knowledge about the subject. Intrigued at first by the self defense aspects and the physical benefits of training, she soon found that there was much more. The dojo provided an encouraging, challenging atmosphere where she could grow mentally as well as physically. It soon became apparent that she had not only joined a dojo, but also a family. The valuable friendships she has made transcend the training hall, and she cannot imagine life without the OKCD.

In 2011, Lia earned her Shodan (1st dan) in Shorin Ryu Karate and Shudokan Karate.  In 2015 she earned her Nidan (2nd dan).

Lia has a background in marketing communications and technical writing. After graduating from the University of North Texas with a degree in English, she worked as a communications professional at IBM for 19 years. She now manages her martial arts gifts and accessories web site, Three Tears Karate, and works as a realtor for Smoger Realty.

When not in the dojo, Lia enjoys spending time with her two grown sons, Brandon and Clayton, and the love of her life, Mark (a.k.a. “Schnookums”).

Lia can be reached at lia - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Christine Sopithakul

クリスティン・ソピタクル

Christine Sopithakul Sensei first became interested in martial-arts by watching Saturday morning kung fu TV shows as a child.  

When her friend and OKCD instructor, Constance, suggested she try a karate class, Christine finally joined the Okinawan Karate Club of Dallas in September 2007. Although she had no previous martial-arts experience, Christine began training multiple times a week and has continued this consistent regimen ever since.  She earned her Shodan (1st dan) in Shorin Ryu and Shudokan and Toei Jujutsu in 2013.  She currently holds the rank of Nidan in Shorin Ryu and Shudokan.

Karate gives Christine a broader sense of awareness, balance and confidence in daily life, and the added confidence in her ability to defend herself; however, it is the members and instructors of the Okinawan Karate Club that really keeps her going back. She loves the healthy, supportive atmosphere and the wealth of knowledge and experience that the club offers. Christine also enjoys helping with the kids program at the club because it allows her to practice being a better instructor. Sopithakul Sensei currently teaches the Monday night open adult class.

Christine works as an IT professional. She is a Senior Application Analyst and has been with the same company for the past 21 years.

Outside the dojo and work, Christine enjoys running, softball, biking, weightlifting, and generally being active.

Chris can be reached at chris - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

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Margaret Siu 

Margaret Siu Sensei started karate at the age of seven at the Okinawan Karate Club of Dallas. As a result, karate emerged as a major factor in Margaret’s character—teaching her humility, self-discipline, and perseverance. She earned her Shodan (1st dan) in June 20, 2015.

Currently a junior at the Episcopal School of Dallas, she is the Editor in Chief for both the online school newspaper, the Eagle Edition, and the school literary magazine, Itinerary. She is also the student coordinator of her Youth and Government club and the communications and planning officer in student vestry. Attributing her successes to diligence learned in the martial arts, she also spends her summer volunteering at the Texas Scottish Rite Children’s Hospital, holding creative writing classes at Nathan Adams Elementary, and giving back to the karate club by teaching the children’s classes. Margaret is the author of “In the Mirror”, an anthology of poetry, art, and vignettes. She is recognized by the Dallas Public Library, University Interscholastic League, TeenInk, New Jersey Poets Society, Scholastic Arts and Writing Awards for her writing. Though Margaret holds a strong interest and passion in writing, she is interested in litigation and consulting.  

Outside of reading, water coloring, and writing in her spare time, Margaret is an avid Hayao Miyazaki fan and watermelon enthusiast.

 


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Andrew Boris

Andrew Boris Sensei began studying Shotokan karate at Tri State Martial Arts Center (TMAC) in Collierville, Tennessee at the age of five.  In 2008, Andrew’s family moved to Frisco, Texas.  Andrew chose to continue studying karate at OKCD because the Shudokan and Shorin Ryu karate styles and the training values taught at OKCD were a natural transition from his prior Shotokan training.  Andrew enjoys kobudo (bo and sai), kumite, and teaching kata to children.  Andrew believes his karate training has given him increased confidence, helped him learn to set and achieve goals, and provided him opportunities to develop leadership skills. He earned his Shodan (1st dan) in 2015.  

Andrew is a student at Staley Middle School.  In 2015, he was recognized by the Duke University Talent Identification Program (TIP) for his score on the American College Test, was inducted into the National Junior Honor Society, placed 5th in Math at the Frisco ISD/Rockwall ISD Academic Pentathlon competition, and advanced to the state level Math and Science team competition.  Andrew is a member of the Staley cross country team and the Frisco Area Summer Swim Team (FASST).  He also plays the violin and the piano. 

Andrew plans to attend Wakeland High School and Brigham Young University to prepare himself to pursue his goal of an advanced degree in Astrophysics. 

Andrew’s younger brother Michael holds the rank of yonkyu at OKCD.

 


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Lisa Gilliam 

Lisa Gilliam Sensei began her career in martial arts when a friend suggested she try karate for her 5- and 7-year-old boys. After several weeks of watching as a bystander, she felt a sort of calling to the sport and she signed up for her first adult class.

Over the years she had played on several field hockey and soccer teams and enjoyed varsity cheerleading in college, as well as lacrosse and marathons post-college, but this was new. She quickly fell in love with everything about karate and the OKCD, and it is true that she remembers the actual moment her foot crossed over onto the dojo floor as she said to herself that she would not be turning back.

Over the course of her journey since that summer, Lisa has trained at OKCD with not just the fanstastic and skilled yudansha but also such notable martial artists as Sensei Bill Hayes, Sensei George Alexander, Guru Laura Holmes, Janice Okimoto, and Sifu Silvio Azzolini, as well as traveled to the training seminar in October 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia, hosted by Sensei Tim Kelley, and special training in Naperville, Illinois, July 2014, with the National Women’s Federation of Martial Arts.

She also has enjoyed helping to teach hundreds of kids’ classes over the years and credits said classes for helping to keep her earlier material fresh and sharp.  She earned her Shodan (1st dan) in 2015 in Shorin Ryu and Shudokan Karate.

Lisa can be reached at lisa - at - okinawankarateclub.com

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Keith Sandefer 

Keith Sandefer Sensei ’s first introduction into martial arts began in 1983 with Sensei Takao Nakaya, achieving the rank of 1st-KYU.  Unfortunately, after receiving this rank there was a pause in Keith’s pursuit of martial arts.  Family, work, and travel took over most of his time until finally in 2005 he rediscovered his passion and started training at the Holtum School of Martial Arts in Plano, Texas.  Keith was awarded his (1st dan) on December 2009 in Tae Kwon Do, but after receiving this rank he felt there was something missing in his training.  He missed the traditional ways - the focus on technique, the history, and the katas.  He finally understood.   With this new found wisdom he made his way to the Okinawan Karate School of Dallas in 2010, and has been there ever since.  

Keith also has a full life outside the dojo.  He is married to an amazing person.  She is both patient and understanding of his karate training.  They are the proud parents of a very talented and gifted son that keeps them very busy.

Keith received his business and finance degree from the University of Maryland, European Division.  He is a wealth advisor with an international bank in the Plano area and holds several professional certifications.

Keith can be reached at keith - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

 

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Stan Manley

Stan began his training in Okinawan karate in 1990 at the University of Florida, where he trained Isshinryu under Dr. Milledge Murphey and Ron Chapman.  He was awarded the rank of Shodan in 1993, and Nidan in 1994.  During this time, he taught the Intro to Karate and Self-Defense for Women classes at UF.  Upon moving to the DFW area in 1996, he continued training for a few months, but eventually stopped training in early 1997 when life got crazy busy.

After a 14-year hiatus from karate training, Stan realized that the ‘standard’ exercise regimen of lifting weights and running just wasn’t cutting it for him (not that we had been training the entire 14 years!).  He needed something he ENJOYED doing, and started looking for a dojo again.

When he entered OKCD in August 2011 to observe a class, he had no intention of actually working out with the class.  However, Smoger Sensei convinced him that working out was a lot more fun that just watching, so he drove the 50-minute roundtrip to get his gi and worked out in the second class under Alexander Sensei.  The rest, as they say, is history. Stan earned his second Shodan in Janary 2017.

Life is still busy with work, family life, fishing, and golf – so Stan doesn’t spend as much time in the dojo as he would like to…but he looks forward to every workout and the chance to connect again with his dojo-mates.

Stan can be reached at stan - at - okinawankarateclub.com

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Eddie Florentino

Eddie Florentino was exposed to Martial Arts in his early teens when he attended a demonstration performed by the late Bruce Lee when Lee visited the Dominican Republic. Later in his mid-teens he practiced Tae-Kown-Do. His Yellow belt-green tag was given directly by Jhoon Goo Rhee in one of his visits to the Dominican Republic. Then as an adult when his children got interested in Martial Arts they practiced Shotokan Karate Do obtaining the rank of Gokyu- 5th Kyu (green belt). Due to many job and family related responsibilities Eddie stopped practicing but kept intact his interest and love for Martial Arts.

When Eddie and his family moved to the USA because of his job, in several occasions he tried to find a martial arts school committed to the traditional way of discipline, respect and way of life rather than the competition and sport oriented view of many schools these days. In June 2011, he and his friend Ismael visited OKCD attending the Thursday night adult class, at that time the instructor was Paul Klotz Sensei. He definitively loved what he saw in that class: Discipline, respect and a methodical approach to the technics and katas. He then attended the Monday evening or night class as a test class and confirmed was he saw on Thursday and joined OKCD dojo that same day.  He earned his Shodan in January 2017.

Eddie holds a BA in Industrial Engineering with minors in Software Engineering and Telecommunications. For several years, he taught Software Engineering and Applied Telecommunications at Pontificia Universidad Catolica Madre y Maestra (PUCMM) in the Dominican Republic. He also has a Master Certificate in IT Project Management from ESI/George Washington University School of Business. Currently Eddie works as Manager of Cloud Operations for a company that develops software for the Oil and Gas Industry.

Eddie has been married to Lily for 33 years and have 3 children Jonathan, David and Jennifer.

Eddie can be reached at eddie - at - okinawankarateclub.com

 

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Peter Busto

Peter  Bustos was first exposed to the martial arts when he was around 11 years old in Illinois after watching a movie where there was this small guy throwing everybody around.  It fascinated him and decided that he was going to learn Judo, so he saved and bought himself a paperback on Judo.  He was also fortunate to have younger brothers to practice on.

Around 1967, he began his karate training at a neighborhood community center in Illinois; he was about   16 years old.   He was unsure what style he was studying, what was important to him was to study Karate.  He reached the rank of yellow belt but had to stop because the building burned down. 
A few years went by, and in 1980, after moving to Dallas, he found a karate school called USA Karate, which was run by Joy Turberville.  It was a Korean style called Yong Wha. He got his second yellow belt  but he had to get a second job at night so he had to leave.  When he finally was financially able to get back, the school had moved. 
He was wondering if there was a pattern developing.
Peter had always loved the martial arts, so 30 odd years later, with his wife Ainslee’s support and encouragement, decided to try karate again.  He researched many schools, but could not decide which one to select.  While driving around one day he noticed the Okinawan Karate Club of Dallas.  He went inside and was greeted by Ilene  Smoger Sensei.  She talked to him about the club and together with Alexander Sensei, was persuaded to take a free lesson. That’s all it took - he joined OKCD that day, October 2011, {he turned 60 years old the following month).  And to his joyous relief, the building and the people were still there after he got his third yellow belt. He received his Shodan in January 2017.
He considers OKCD his second home and the wonderful people there, his second family.  Everyone, his instructors, and his fellow students, are all responsible for him being here and they are the reason why he continue to stay.

Peter can be reached at peter - at - okinawankarateclub.com

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Silvio Azzolini
シルヴィオ・アゾリニー 

Master Azzolini has been practicing martial arts for over 3 decades. He began studying the martial arts in 1973 at the age of fifteen in Sao Paulo, Brazil.  Master Azzolini later moved to the Republic of China in search of a traditional Chinese Kung Fu Master.  Upon arriving in China, Master Azzolini obtained the names of the three top Kung Fu Masters on the island.  He then set about seeking each one out. After meeting the first two teachers Master Azzolini was impressed with their high level of skill but soon after meeting the third teacher he knew this was the man who possessed the highest level of martial arts skill he had ever encountered. This man was the famous Grandmaster Chen Shuei Tsai, the Chief Master of the Taipei Chinese Kung Fu Association.  Master Azzolini spent the next several months persistently requesting to be accepted as a disciple of Master Chen and finally on December 28, 1984, Master Chen recognized his great will and determination and accepted him as a disciple.

Master Chen set only one condition upon his disciples training, that he would train six days a week for six hours a day.  Master Azzolini quickly accepted the conditions and spent the next several years training endlessly in Traditional Northern & Southern Shaolin Kung Fu.  Master Azzolini soon became the top student at the Taipei Chinese Kung Fu Association and was made the Captain of the Demonstration Team.  While in the Republic of China, Master Azzolini was the only non-Chinese member of the Taipei Chinese Kung Fu Association Demonstration Team as well as Assistant Instructor of the Association and an Advisor to the World Kung Fu Championships.

In 1985 Master Azzolini's skills were noticed by Director Robert Tai and the Golden Sun Film Company.  Master Azzolini was asked to play a leading role in several kung fu movie productions including "Mafia vs. Ninja", "Ninja Final Duel" and "Hong Men Heroes I & II". 

Master Azzolini is also the Director of the Taipei Chinese Kung Fu Association, USA Chapter.

We are especially pleased that Master Azzolini is instructing at OKCD. He graciously teaches the advanced students at OKCD. 

Dr. Silvio Azzonli is also a family medicine doctor.

He can be reached at sifu - at - okinawankarateclub.com.

 

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