About Our Instructors
Soke' Jeff Santella
Soke’ Jeffs 35 years of Martial Arts Training combined with 30 years in Law Enforcement gives him a well rounded & realistic insight to teaching . He has competed in over 12 arts and earned “Black Belt” or Teaching recognition in 9 styles . As well as being Southwest Florida’s first “UFC” certified trainer.
O'Renshi Terry Zornes
O’Renshi Terry is a Sr. Instructor 6th Degree Black Belt. Known for his leadership and Bushido, Terry is one of the few that can actually give Soke a “Worry Free” day off. Renshi has been training and teaching with Martial Arts University for 23 years.
Renshi Ferd DeSantis
A true testament to your not to old for “Martial Arts University” is our beloved “Great Grandpa Sensei” Ferd. He started in his 60’s and is still going strong in his 90s’ A third degree Black Belt and a fine example of the Martial Arts Spirit.
Sensei Cody Chilson
A veteran to the arts at 32, Sensei Cody’s hunger for knowledge and eagerness to except challenge is refreshing. He has made his mark as a valued instructor of Martial Arts University and now teaches FCS Kali Club and Kung-Fu classes.
Sensei Sarah Basco Homem
Sensei Sarah has been with Martial Arts University for fifteen years, and has shown a total commitment to the dojo. She is somewhat of a modernist, never the less she can also be found learning and instructing the traditional martial arts as well. Sensei Sarah also really brings the spiritual aspect of martial arts into her classes, and works extremely well with children by inspiring them.
Sensei Justice Santella
Future Soke, Sensei Justice has been training before birth, living out the essence of martial arts in the dojo and at home. Sensei Justice is key example for younger generations. His maturity level is beyond his years while teaching and conveying his love of martial arts to others.
O'Sensei Micaela Lopez
O’Sensei Micaela Lopez is a true example of what a “Black Belt” should be. Her 23 years of dedication to our Martial Art has resulted in not only a 3rd Degree Black Belt, but a fine tuned young lady with a balance of “Shin-Gi-Tai” (Moral, Technical, Physical excellence). With Micaela on board, MAU/Martial Arts University will surely last for generations to come. Micaela is like the daughter I never had
– Soke’ Jeff Santella
Sensei Martial Santella
The son of Soke, Sensei Martial was born training! He brings a bright and uplifting vibe to every class. Martial models perseverance and maintains a positive attitude no matter what challenges he faces in martial arts training. Martial is excellent working with children and brings the love of martial arts.
Sempai Lily Erickson (Active)
Sempai Lily is literally a life-long martial artist. From a five year old ninja to a Junior Black Belt at just ten years old, Lily conducts herself and her classes with a maturity beyond her years. She can be found around the dojo on any day, balancing her time between teaching others and training for herself. She is an inspiration to her peers and a talented young lady. This future Sensei is a valuable asset to MAU!
Master Brian Douglas (Active)
The MAU Chief TaeKwon-Do Instructor is Brian Douglas, an ITF certified IVth Degree Black Belt. Mr. Douglas received his 1st Degree Black Belt on April 10, 1984, from Master Tae Hee Yi in Connecticut. Mr. Douglas was the Chief Instructor of the TaeKwon-Do program at the Regional Y, Brookfield, Connecticut from 1988-2016. He has practiced for the past 33 years under Grand Master Suk Jun Kim, a former member of General Choi’s International TaeKwon-Do Federation’s International Demonstration Team.
Coach Jeff Gosnell Sr. (Active)
Black Belt Street Tactics Instructor & Archery Coach. Jeff is Mr. Dependable, always helpful and proactive with anything Martial Arts University is involved in. Jeff Gosnell has been with Martial Arts University for 5 years
Coach Robert Rapp (Active)
Archery Coach Bert brings a calm demeanor to his archery classes, making your archery skills grow and more zen. Coach Bert is on his 9th year with Martial Arts University.
Coach John Eckerle (Active)
With Martial Arts University 6 years
Kru Micael Lopez (Active)
Kru Micael Lopez has been on the martial arts scene since he was 3 years old. Coming from a family of well-rounded and highly trained martial artists, Micael brings his own energy into every class he teaches. His Muay Thai classes push students to strive for their very best, through both rigorous training and constant encouragement. Citing Kru Richard Pepper as one of his biggest Muay Thai inspirations, Micael has even pursued his passion in the cage, winning his first medal in 2015 at United Cage Fights #10! In the spirit of his 20+ years at MAU, he can also instruct in the other multiple styles. We are grateful to have him working with us!
Coach Albert Williams (Active)
Albert has been training with Martial Arts University for 4 years. He is heavily involved with our classes and can be found soaking up MMA knowledge at every chance. Albert is United Cage Fights Lt. Heavyweight MMA Champion.
Sensei Daniel Campisi (Inactive)
Sensei Daniel is the “Natural”, with his remarkable and gifted physical abilities, it’s no wonder he leads our Parkour/Free running program. Daniel has been with the dojo since he was 8 years old. Daniel is trained in the traditional martial arts but as well as using his street defense in his law enforcement career with the Florida Highway Patrol. With his stoic manner, Sensei Daniel brings the air of seriousness that should be treated with martial arts while conveying the love of the art to his students.
Coach Oscar Montilla (Inactive)
Coach Oscar is natural boxing coach. He will push you to your full potential and have you above “fight ready”. He is a Olympic Gold Medalist, done Golden Gloves and MAU’s Boxing coach. Oscar has been with Martial Arts University since he was 15 years old.
Sempai Zack Rachel (Inactive)
Sempai Zack has 8 years of karate experience including Ishin Ryu and Shito Ryu. He also studies kickboxing and MMA. Zack has been with Martial Arts University for 3 years.
Sempai Westin Meier (Inactive)
Sempai Westin brings his Bushido and energy to every class. Westin has excelled in his 6yrs at Martial Arts University. One of only 10 Jr Black Belts Martial Arts University has promoted in the last 30 years
Sensei Mike Recca (Inactive)
Sensei Mike is the Gentle Giant, at a fighting weight of nearly 300lbs. Mike is great communicator, a dedicated student and a regular in our Full Contact Classes.
Instructor Shelby Rapp (Inactive)
Instructor Shelby is the second to earn her Street Tactics Black Belt earning her the title of “Instructor”. Shelby’s commitment and work ethic to Martial Arts University is beyond exemplary. She has been training and growing up with us for the past 9 years.
Instructor Mackenzie Halter (Inactive)
A young woman of many talents, Instructor Mackenzie is very gifted in the multi-style system of Street Tactics. Mackenzie is proof that martial arts can bring out the leader within any body as we have seen her grow in to a strong and confident instructor who is always willing to impart her knowledge to younger generation. Mackenzie is always willing to accept any challenge, even training with people twice her age. She is a role model for all martial artists both young and old
Sensei Howard (inactive)
and his lovely wife Karen have relocated to Colorado, but still holds the “Martial Arts University” methods close to his heart. Sensei Howard brought his high integrity and even “Higher Intelligence” to our humble system.
Sensei Miguel Garced (Inactive) Testing
Sensei Christian Harney (Inactive)
Christian is a NCCPT certified personal trainer. He has been involved in sports, fitness and coaching for over 20 years. His martial arts background includes Kuntao, boxing, kick boxing, and Muay Thai. Christian currently has an MMA amateur record of 1-1 and an amateur Muay Thai record of 4-3. He also has a background in football and played at the University of St. Francis in Joliet Illinois. As a personal trainer he specializes in weight management, sports specific conditioning, fat loss, and general strength and conditioning.