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KENPO (FIST LAW)
HISTORY AND LINEAGE

Chuan Fa (Chinese for Fist Law) is a martial art system developed in China. The Japanese learned this system from traveling to China and from Chinese travelers to Okinawa (Japan). With their own fighting style they developed their own system (Kenpo). Mitose’s family learned this martial art.
Masayoshi (James). Mitose (1916-1983) was the first Great Grand Master of Kosho Ryu Kenpo (Japanese for Fist Law). He spent fifteen years of his life studying with his grandfather in Japan, mastering the mental and physical aspects of Kempo. James Mitose returned to Oahu, Hawaii in the late 1930s and established a school called the Official Self-Defense Club, at the Beretania mission in Honolulu. The first person to teach Kenpo in the USA.

William Chow was one of only six students elevated to black belt by James Mitose.


Nick Cerio is regarded as one of the foremost authorities on Kenpo, and has received many awards.

  • In 1966 Sensei Pesare awarded Professor Cerio his Shodan (1st degree of black belt) in Kenpo.
  • He was inducted into the Karate Hall of Fame in 1983 and in the same year he received Inside Kung-Fu's reader award.
  • Awarded Shodan in Hakkoryu Jiujutsu by Professor Larry Garron.
  • In 1971 Nick Cerio is ranked 5th Degree Black Belt by Professor Chow.
  • Awarded Sifu by Master Gan Fong Chin, 8th Degree Black Belt by Master Gan Fong Chin in Sil Lum Kung Fu.
  • Awarded 9th Degree Black Belt in Kenpo Karate by Master Ed Parker, In September 1973.
  • Professor Cerio tested and received his 5th Degree black belt from Master Tadashi Yamasita in 1973.
  • Professor Nick Cerio also studied: Boxing, competing in the US Air Force, Taekwondo under Ted Olsen and Ernie Lieb (Chung Do Kwan), Judo under George McCabe, Tai Chi Chuan under Master Gee Gin Soon, and Weapons under Fumio Dumura.



John’s current teacher is Don Rodrigues, a 10th degree Black Belt who is certified by: Nick Cerio, Ed Parker and George Pesare. He is one of Nick Cerio’s first students and studied with him for decades.

Don Rodrigues:
• Received 10th Degree Black Belt on July 17th, 2010 from Senior Grand Master George Pesare.
• Promoter / Director – Ocean State Grand Nationals (32 years running), one of the top 10 tournaments in North America
• Vice President / Co-owner Krane Ratings Inc., New England’s premiere Sport Karate Ratings service
• Head Coach – Team Paul Mitchell (1988 – present)
• Head Coach – WAKO USA 1991 – present
• Has coached / trained over 150 competitors to over 200 World titles (1985 – present)
• Has coached over 36 Teams to World titles (1991 – present)
• Has been inducted in over 30 Martial Art Hall of Fames.

John Keefe was awarded his fourth degree black belt by Professor Cerio. Shihan Keefe studied under the Professor from 1989 to 1996.
John Keefe was awarded his fifth degree black belt by Grandmaster Rodrigues. Shihan Keefe has been studying under Don Rodrigues since 2011.

China
Shaolin Chuan Fa

Japan
Kosho Ryu Kenpo

America
Dynamic Fist Law


A more detailed linage of teachers of Martial Arts leading up to Shihan Keefe

It is important to note that most if not all teachers had experience in different styles and/or had black belts in more then one style or system or ranked by more than one Kenpo teacher. This linage shows the Kenpo connection and linage which all the styles built around.

James Mitose - Kosho Ryu Kenpo. Received black belt in Japan.
He taught William Chow and Adrian Emperado

William Chow - Karaho Kenpo. Received black belt from James Mitose.
He taught Adrian Emperado.

Adrian Emperado - Kajukenbo. Received black belt from both William Chow and James Mitose.
He taught Sonny Gascon.

Sonny Gascon - Karazenpo Go Shinjutsu. Received black belt from Adrian Emperado.
He taught George Pesare.

George Pesare - Kaito Gakko. Received his black belt from Sonny Gascon.
He taught Nick Cerio.

Nick Cerio - Nick Cerio's Kenpo. Received black belt from George Pesare and William Chow.
He taught
Don Rodrigues, Fred Villari and John Keefe.

John Keefe Dynamic Fist Law (Kenpo). Received black belt from Paul Taylor, Nick Cerio and Don Rodrigues.


• John Keefe’s was awarded his 1st - 3rd degree black belts by Paul Taylor a 10th Degree Black Belt and student of Charles Mattera. Charles Mattera was a student of Fred Villari (One of Nick Cerio’s first black belts).

• John Keefe was awarded his 4th degree black belt by Nick Cerio, a 10th degree Black Belt.

• John Keefe was awarded his 5th degree black belt by Don Rodrigues, a 10th degree Black Belt who is certified by: Nick Cerio, Ed Parker and George Pesare.

• Grandmaster Don Rodrigues is the current teacher to John Keefe.

Certified Black Belts
Under John Keefe


Curriculum

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