These are current instructors at Bob White's Kenpo Karate Studio. All of these people have achieved and shown that they deserve the recognition as a teacher at Bob White's Kenpo Karate Studio.
Passing up a professional baseball career at a young age, Senior Master Bob White has been contributing to the art of American Kenpo for over fifty-years. On the tournament circuit he won numerous state, national, and international fighting championships. Bob White fought on the National All Star Black Belt Team, which went undefeated in 1973 and 1974. As a teacher and coach, he has consistently turned out some of the worlds finest karate fighters.
Over the past 50+ years, Bob White's Karate Studio has had many World Champion fighters and each year throughout the 1990s his students accounted for at least one of the Black Belt Grand Champions at the International Karate Championships. Bob White and his wife Barbara conduct seminars throughout the United States, South America, and Europe. They are both professional instructors who enjoy sharing their Kenpo and being in service to their students.
Bob White was involved in the original "Karate Kid" movie and appeared as a referee in the film. BWKS had over 50 students that appeared in the movie as tournament competitors. Mr. White was also involved in The Karate Kid part 3 and worked to promote the new “Karate Kid” version with Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith.
Senior Master White along with his wife Barbara and a great team from BWKS promote an annual karate tournament, The Bob and Barbara White Invitational that raises money for the Royal Family Kids. Royal Family Kids is an organization that provides a week long camp for abused and neglected children. The Bob and Barbara White Invitational began in 2005, and to date, has raised over a million dollars for RFK. Not only have hundreds of children been helped through the tournament, but the Kenpo community throughout the world has gained an awareness of RFK, and a desire to become involved in this cause. This involvement of the Kenpo community continues to grow, and contributions are coming in from all over the world.
In the 1980’s Bob White was promoted to 7th Degree Black Belt by Senior Grand Master, Ed Parker. This was the highest rank that Ed Parker ever promoted. He was one of only a very few to earn that rank. Senior Master White has been inducted into many different Hall of Fames and recently he was the 2012 Keynote Speaker for the Master’s Hall of Fame in Southern California.
On March 24 th 2018 in a very large gathering of Kenpo leaders, Senior Master White was asked to be promoted to the rank of 10th Degree Black Belt. After turning down various requests for 25 years to move to 10 th Degree Senior Master White accepted and now has the title of "Senior Master".
Bob White has been featured in various books including The Who’s Who in Martial Arts, The Journey, and most recently in The International Journey. His new book, “Life in Session; The Senior Master Bob White Story” is now available in our store. He has also been interviewed on many television and radio shows.
Besides the martial arts, Bob enjoys game fishing, running, and is an avid tennis player. Bob, Barbara and their children live in Costa Mesa, California.
Whatever rewards Bob White has achieved in his life, he owes to the grace of God and gives thanks daily to Him.
Barbara and her husband, Bob White, own and operate a karate school in Costa Mesa, Ca. The BWKS has a great history of service to our community and Barbara is a driving force in maintaining the very highest of standards at the school. Barbara is currently a 5th Degree Black Belt, and teaches private lessons. She has a personal commitment to each of her students, many of whom have reached the degree of black belt. Barbara graduated from Washington State with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing. She works as a Case Manager at Hoag Hospital in Newport Beach.
She has competed on and has 1st place victories in all levels including 1st Place at the International Karate Championships as a Light Weight Black Belt. She also competed and was on the first place Women’s Black Belt Team at the 2012 International Karate Championships held in Long Beach, Ca. Barbara was chosen to be one of the members of the Ed Parker’s American Kenpo Dream Team to perform for the Shaolin Monks from China at the 2013 Festival and Tournament held at the LA Convention Center.
Barbara has been actively involved in promoting an event every year for Royal Family Kids. This is a world-wide organization that provides a weeklong camp for abused and neglected children. Barbara has also been a camp nurse every year since 2006 and also runs a karate program for one of the activities at camp. Bob and Barbara were recognized by the Honorable John M.W. Moorlach of the California Senate for their longstanding record of achievement and humanitarian efforts to the community. They have also been recognized and by the United Martial Arts for Christ for their humanitarian work.
The team of Bob and Barbara White, teach seminars all over the United States, South America, and Europe. The opportunity to share their knowledge, be in service to Kenpo, and make new friends is something that they consider a true blessing.
Because of her passion for wanting to help others become the best that they can be, Barbara created an extensive yearlong Children’s Character curriculum, that is implemented in the children’s group classes. As a result, children learn about important principles, some of which are, leadership, integrity, responsibility, respect, commitment, friendship, and service.
Barbara, and her husband, Bob, has developed The Triad to Success, a diagram depicting essentials advantageous for a student’s success in their martial arts journey. These essentials are the parent, the student, and the teacher. When all three work together, great things can happen. If there is a failure in one or more of the three components, failure is more likely. Within this Triad are characteristics that are also needed, one of which is gratitude, located at the top of the triad.
Another passion of Barbara’s is working with women and speaking out against the wrongs we see in our culture. As a result, she has created a Women’s Self Defense program that has helped women around the world in becoming better educated and empowered through the realization that they can hit effectively and defend themselves.
In 2014, at the 50th anniversary of the International Karate Championships, Barbara created a Women’s Symposium that consisted of a panel of women who have made a difference in their community. This was a first-of-it’s-kind recognition for women in Martial Arts. The symposium was well received, gave a voice to women in martial arts, and role modeling for the young ladies who are involved in Martial Arts.
“I am grateful for the opportunities martial arts has provided me to help others and make a difference in their lives. As a woman, Martial Arts has allowed me to speak out against issues I feel are impactful to women, such as sexual violence, and to use my experience fight back in a productive way. As a Christian, martial arts has allowed me to use my passion and talents to help others in a manner that is pleasing to God.”
7th Degree Black Jim McClure began training under Mr. White in 1981 and quickly established himself as one of the top prospects at BWKS.
Prior to getting his 1st Degree Black in 1984, Mr. McClure was already a three-time International Champion winning as a Blue Belt and twice as the leadoff fighter on back to back Brown Belt IKC championship teams. Jim also won the IKC several times as a Black Belt in the light heavyweight division as well as many other regional tournaments.
Promoted to 5th Degree by Mr. White and the American Kenpo Senior Council in the 90s, Professor McClure was the first person to test for higher belt rank in that organization. Jim McClure was promoted to 7th Degree in 2016. Mr. McClure is one of the longest tenured instructors at Bob White’s Karate. He still teaches select private students and the beginner/color belt class on Wednesday nights @ 6 PM.
Jamie is a 3 time World Champion who has been in martial arts for over 30 years. He is a full time karate instructor.
After retiring from the U.S. Coast Guard, Rod Smith earned a Ph.D. in management at the University of California, Irvine and is currently a professor of accounting at the University of Arkansas. After some arm-twisting, Rod started studying Shotokan Karate in 1991 with his son in Northern Virginia, and then he was hooked. He joined the Bob White Karate studio in 1995 after moving to Orange County. He earned a black belt in American Kenpo in 2000.
Inspired by his son Matthew, a fellow black belt who began training with Mr. White in 1997, Tom became a student of Mr. White's in 1998. His journey has convinced him of the truth in the phrase, "Life begins at 40." Being part of the BWKS family and a student of American Kenpo has had an invaluable impact on his physical, mental, and spiritual development and fitness. Tom, his wife and two children are residents of Huntington Beach, and he's hanging onto his day job as an insurance broker so he can continue to grow as a student and instructor at BWKS.
Mr. Cammann is a 4th Degree Black Belt. Mr. Cammann is a great asset to the school and has helped many people on their journey.
“We are teaching children to esteem themselves.” -- Gordon Alexander, Talk So Kids Will Listen: Black Belt Thesis, May 2002.
Gordon Alexander has been a student of martial arts for 11 years. He advanced to purple belt under Robert Ito in Novato, California in 1994 through 1996. In 1997 he moved to Southern California to study under Bob White, Jamie Matthew, Rob Fenton and all the great martial artists at BWKS. He currently holds the rank 4th degree black belt. Mr. Alexander started teaching children karate in 1996 and maintains a special interest in teaching karate to both adults and children. Everyone in his family does martial arts. He had two sons aged 15 and 18 who are also black and brown belts in kenpo, respectively, and his wife, Jeanne-Marie has a purple belt in kenpo and studies Jeet Kung Do.
Professionally, Mr. Alexander has advanced degrees in engineering and works as a consulting environmental engineer in Costa Mesa, California. His other interests include hiking and recovery spirituality.
Paul Gentosi has been involved in the martial arts for twenty years. He started his study of Kenpo under Mr. White in 1997. He was promoted to Black Belt by Mr. White in 2001. He has been teaching and assisting with the adult beginning class for several years and thoroughly enjoys giving back to the art through teaching group classes and privates. He continues his study by attending the class whenever possible and sharing with the other instructors in the studio. He currently holds the rank of Third Degree Black Belt. His only regret is not having started in Kenpo 25 or 30 years earlier! Mr. Gentosi is married with two children and lives in Newport Beach. Professionally, he is the President of his own consulting firm offering expert testimony and litigation support to the legal industry. He also provides Construction Management Services as an outside consultant to developers and owners in the building industry.
Jesse Salinas is a 6th Degree who has been training since 1970. He is a full time kenpo instructor and has a very successful record as a fighter. Mr. Salinas has a great reputation as an excellent instructor.
Virgil Bartomolucci is a 5th degree Black Belt and a valued student, instructor, and friend at our school. He has been studying Kenpo since 1993. Virgil was in service to our country, serving in Vietnam during the years of 1967 and 1968, and is now in service to our studio helping children and adults in Kenpo. He is also the Director of the Bob White Invitational. Virgil lives in Huntington Beach with his wife, Linda and together they own a successful graphic arts business. They have a grandson, Gino, who will most likely be one of our future black belts. We are proud to have Virgil as a part of our studio.
Vishal Shukla began his Kenpo studies in 1988 during his senior year in college. After graduating with a degree in Electrical Engineering he moved home and continued his training. In 1993, Vishal was awarded his Black belt in the Tracy System of Kenpo by Mr. David Freidberg.
In 1996 Vishal relocated to Illinois for his career. While in IL, he continued his training in White Tiger Kenpo under Mr. Tom Saviano, a direct student of long time Kenpoist John McSweeney. In 1997, his career once again resulted in Vishal relocating to Southern California. He trained under Mr. Bob Leonard for a while before eventually finding his way to Bob White's Karate Studio in 1998 where he is a personal student of Professor White. Vishal was promoted to 5th degree Black Belt in 2008.
In addition to his Engineering degree, Vishal holds graduate degrees in both Computer Science and Business and is currently employed by Oracle.. In his spare time he likes to read and collect old comic books, of which he has a collection of over 7,000.
Ron Sanchez is a retired from the Los Angeles Police Department Command Officer and his career spanned 31 years. On August 31, 2006, Ron retired as the Commanding Officer of Hollywood Division, to focus more of his attention on his company, Veritas Assurance Group Inc., a California Corporation, specializing in Law Enforcement Best Practices, Risk Management, Use of Force and Internal Auditing; and to pursue philanthropic goals.
Ron has been an active student and martial artist since 1971. He is a Sixth Degree Black Belt under Mr. Bob White. Ron is a second generation Black Belt of Mr. Ed Parker, and is listed on the Edmond Parker Black Belt Family Tree.
Ron has competed in and won numerous martial arts competitions. He has been a member of Championships Teams in the State of California Karate Championships and the Long Beach International Championships. He has also won over 20 Gold, Silver and Bronze Medals in California and National Law Enforcement Competitions in fighting, forms and pistol competitions.
Ron is a sought after teacher and has presented a series of martial arts educational seminars, on a national level, on urban survival, pre-assault indicators, lethal confrontations, combat mindset, weapons retention and disarming techniques. Ron also has a vast amount of experience as a law enforcement self defense, tactics and physical fitness instructor.
Ron has been a driving force with the Hollywood Police Activities League (PAL). In 1995, Ron saw a fledgling program trying to impact inner city kids lives. Ron immediately volunteered and incorporated the benefits of a martial arts education as a vehicle to establish a successful system of mentoring and youth development. Over the last decade the PAL program has grown into successful 501 C-3 Non Profit model program and has impacted the lives of over one thousand kids.
For more information on the Hollywood PAL, contact Ron Sanchez.
Chad Gundlach has been a student of martial arts for 20 years. He received his first degree Black Belt from the California State Polytechnic University, Pomona in 1991 in Okinawan Kenpo. After graduating, Chad moved to Orange County and was exposed to Kenpo Karate for the first time. In 1995, he began to study under Bob White, in Costa Mesa. Shortly after joining, he began teaching classes with an emphasis on kicking. Today, Mr. Gundlach holds the rank of 4th Degree Black Belt. He has been married to his wife Charlene, for 10 years and has two sons, Jacob and Luke. Jacob, now 6, currently holds a rank of yellow belt at BWKS. Professionally, Mr. Gundlach is the Director of Product Development for an Irvine based company. His other interests include playing hockey and backpacking.
Andrea Pfefer-Solow has been a student of Bob White and Kenpo Karate for over 20 years. Ms. Pfefer is currently a 5th Degree Black Belt. She has been the Inter-national champion six times and has won more than 100 1st place trophies in her tournament career. She is the owner of the Telluride Karate Studio, where her main focus is to instill in her students the knowledge she gained from the many champions at Bob White's Karate. Telluride Karate.
Don Coursey is a 5th Degree Black Belt and is the father of 3 black belt children. He has been an instructor at BWKS for many years. Don is a fine athlete and was a first place winner at this years IKC`s.
Alia was raised in the karate studio and has been teaching for many years. She is a former IKC champion and loves sharing her knowledge with her students. Alia is married and has twin girls.
We are happy to welcome Mike Pombeiro as an instructor to our school. Mike comes to us with over 25 years of martial arts experience. He holds 3rd degree Black Belts in both American Kenpo and Chinese Kenpo. Mike has won almost every major tournament nationally and internationally and has fought against competitors from over 20 countries. He has been inducted into Black Belt Magazine's Hall of Fame for "Competitor of the Year". He is a 2 time NASKA champion and a 3 time NBL World Champion. Mike is also a WAKO gold medalist for team USA. Mike was also a member of Team Paul Mitchell which won numerous World Champion titles. Mike is available for private lessons.
Sean achieved his black belt in December of 2011 after four long years of study and is now a 2nd degree black belt. In his spare time Sean and his wife Andree travel throughout the southwest capturing images for his other hobby and side business, redinkphotography. Sean also pulls out his camera to photograph our large events, including the Bob White Invitational Tournament.
Andree, currently a 2nd degree blackbelt, first began at the studio in 1999, but has been actively studying since 2007. She placed 1st in forms at the Long Beach Internationals in 2011 and has competed in various tournaments throughout the years. She is a proud to have three wonderful children and two grandchildren and loves to spend time in the great outdoors with her best friend and husband, Sean. She is a forever student, always wanting to learn as well as pass along her knowledge to upcoming students, children or adult. She has created a website honoring our Kenpo Women, as part of her Black Belt Thesis, and is looking forward to watching it evolve into a place where women who are starting out in karate have a place to reference, honor the legacies, and learn about the women who have been a huge part of the evolution of American Kenpo.
Chantel DeAngelo started her kenpo karate training with Bob White when she was 4 yrs old. Miss DeAngelo is currently a 3rd Degree Black Belt and is one of the finest children instructors we have ever seen. She has a tremendous ability to combine discipline and fun in her classes, and has a personal interest in the success of each child she teaches. She is one of four DeAngelo children that have earned their Black Belt at our school and we are very proud to have Chantel as part of BWKS family.
Chantal DeAngelo is a very creative, gifted, and talented artist, and some of her work hangs on the wall at our studio. Her plans are to go on to college and continue with her education in art. We have no doubt that she will find success in this as well.
Raymond DeAngelo, is the youngest of the DeAngelo children, and followed his brothers and sister into our school. He is a 2nd Degree Black Belt and is an active instructor at our school. Mr. DeAngelo has competed in various tournaments including a very successful trip to China in a large competition. Raymond, who is currently a college student, is an outstanding athlete and we look forward to his being involved with our school for years to come.
Raymond has an outstanding talent to motivate and instill a desire for improvement in his students.
Heather Flessing began her Kenpo journey at Bob White’s Karate Studio in 2009. She is a 2nd degree black belt and teaches one of the children’s intermediate classes. She enjoys helping children learn new skills and is an elementary school teacher by profession. Heather has placed 1st in sparring and forms at the Long Beach Internationals in addition to other tournaments, and she really enjoys competition.
Kimberly Alcala is a 2nd degree blackbelt who teaches both group classes and privates. Kimberly recently graudated high school and will be attending Vanguard University to study nursing starting in the fall of 2017.
Alexis MacKenzie is a 1st degree black belt.
Ralph Wilson is a 2nd degree blackbelt who teaches group classes and private lessons.
Seamus McGeough is a 3rd degree black belt who teaches group classes and private lessons.
Jacob Leger is a 3rd degree brown belt who teaches group classes and private lessons.
Mike Hardesty is a 1st degree black belt who teaches group classes and private lessons.