• BB slide 2014

Instructors

Sensei Bill Stimpson (Head Instructor)

5th Degree Black Belt

Head Instructor Sensei Bill Stimpson is a 5th Degree Black Belt and also holds a first degree in Kyusho Jitsu. Born and raised in the Fergus-Elora area, Sensei Bill has always shown a keen interest in sports and played on Championship teams in both hockey and lacrosse.  He is an enthusiastic teacher and a positive influence on everyone who comes into contact with him.

Sensei Bill Stimpson has over 25 years of martial arts training and received his Shodan (1st degree black belt) in 1996, Nidan in 1999, Sandan in 2002, and Yondan in 2006 from Hanshi Bill Hind.  Kyoshi Jay Purdy awarded him his Godan (5th Degree) in 2011. Sensei Bill has been teaching at Elora Gorge Karate Dojo since 1996 and took over ownership in 2005. He has also received a Shodan in Kyusho Jitsu in 2005 from Dillman International –Steve Stewart 8th Dan.

Sensei Bill has had the privilege of training in classes and Seminars with the following instructors:

  • Master Meitatsu Yagi, Hanshi 10th Dan (Honorary Chariman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Bill Hind, Hanshi 9th Dan
  • Sensei Akihito Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Akihiro Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Vice-President IMGKA)
  • Sensei Luis Morales, Kyoshi 8th Dan
  • Sensei Steve Stewart, Kyoshi 8th Dan
  • Sensei Jay Purdy, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Skol Batraks, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Ken Trebilcock, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Renshi Steve Picotte
  • Sensei John Bak, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Kim Marshall, 6th Dan
  • Sensei Mark Matthews, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Jeff Hopping, Renshi 5th Dan
  • Sensei Rusty McMains, Renshi 5th Dan
  • Sensei Bob Toth, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Kao Saechao, 4th Dan
  • Sensei Jim Kelsh
  • Sensei Bill Klym, 3rd Dan

Read Sensei Bill’s thoughts about “The Future of Martial Arts”


Sempai Jim Kurtz

4th Degree Black Belt

Sempai Jim Kurtz has been training at Elora Gorge Karate since 1994. He received his Shodan in 2002 and Nidan in 2005 from Kyoshi Bill Hind, his Sandan in 2009 from Kyoshi Jay Purdy, and his Yondan in July 2014 from Master Meitatsu Yagi. Before coming to Gorge Karate, Sempai Jim also trained for 7 years (1977-1984) in Shotokan, attaining Shodan level in 1984.

In addition to over 35 years of martial arts training Sempai Jim also holds a Level 2 NCCP Coaching Certificate.

 

 

Sempai Jim has had the privilege of training with a number of experienced teachers including:

  • Master Meitatsu Yagi, Hanshi 10th Dan (Honorary Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Bill Hind, Hanshi 9th Dan
  • Sensei Akihito Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Luis Morales, Kyoshi 8th Dan
  • Sensei Jay Purdy, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Skol Batraks, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Master Wally Sloki
  • Sensei John Bak, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Jeff Hopping, Renshi 5th Dan
  • Sensei Mike Robertson, Renshi 5th Dan
  • Sensei Bill Stimpson, 5th Dan

 


Sempai Dave Lyons

3rd Degree Black Belt

It didn’t take me long after retirement to realize that I needed physical and mental activity to challenge me and help keep me occupied. I looked around locally and was fortunate to find a karate dojo right in my back yard and as they say, the rest is history. I very much enjoyed being around young people, especially children, and the teaching aspect is also rewarding. That along with training helps to keep me young.

I started training in 1997 under Kyoshi Jay Purdy, received my Shodan in 2003 and Nidan in 2005 from Hanshi Bill Hind and Sandan in 2009 from Kyoshi Jay Purdy. I have also received a Shodan in Kyusho Jitsu in 2005 from Dillman International –Steve Stewart 8th Dan.

I have had the privilege of training in class and seminars with the following instructors:

  • Master Meitatsu Yagi, Hanshi 10th Dan (Honorary Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Bill Hind, Hanshi 9th Dan
  • Sensei Akihito Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Chariman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Luis Morales, Kyoshi 8th Dan
  • Sensei Steve Stewart, Kyoshi 8th Dan
  • Sensei Jay Purdy, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Skol Batraks, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Steve Picotte, Renshi
  • Sensei John Bak, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Kim Marshall, 6th Dan (for 13 wonderful summers)
  • Sensei Mark Matthews, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Jeff Hopping, Renshi 5th Dan
  • Sensei Mike Robertson, Renshi 5th Dan
  • Sensei Rusty McMains, Renshi 5th dan
  • Sensei Bill Stimpson, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Jim Kelsh

 


Sempai Bryce LeBlanc

3rd Degree Black Belt

I have enjoyed being a member of this well established school since 2000.

Among the benefits of my training is increased ability to focus and concentrate which have greatly impacted other areas of my life.
The training I have received has increased my motivation to learn more about health, fitness and self-defence.
My senseis and fellow members create a welcome environment that is conducive to learning.
My decision to commit to training at Gorge Karate continues to reap great rewards in and out of the dojo.

Sempai Bryce was awarded his Sandan by Master Meitoku Yagi Sensei on July 11th, 2014. Congratulations Sempai Bryce!

 


Sempai Dawn White

3rd Degree Black Belt

I started training in Goju Karate in April 2003 at the Rideau Osgoode Karate Club (just south of Ottawa) with Sensei Albert Ethier (Rokyudan). I initially went to his dojo to just watch a class, but Sensei Albert “forced” me to participate and I’ve been hooked on karate ever since.

I began training at Gorge Karate in September 2004 after moving to the area. I received my Shodan in June 2008 and my Nidan in December 2010 under the guidance of Sensei Bill. I love the discipline of karate, the precision of kata, as well as the application of the techniques hidden in the kata. I thoroughly enjoy training with all the karate-ka at the dojo. The positive impact of karate (physical and mental) seeps into my daily life.

My favourite karate quote comes from the Bubishi (the bible of karate), the 19th Law of Wisdom: “do not seek more but learn to enjoy less”

 Sempai Dawn was awarded her Sandan by Sensei Mark Matthews (Rokudan) and Sensei Bill Stimpson on June 14, 2012. Conragtulations Sempai Dawn!


Sempai Jerry Van Esch

3rd Degree Black Belt

Sensei Jerry

I started my Gojyu-Ryu training in 2007 with Sensei Bill Stimpson after watching my daughters enjoy karate with him so much. I had trained in Judo as a child and still find the skills I had learned there very useful.

I love the challenge karate brings to my life as well as the stress relief. The dojo is my second home, the other black belts and students my extended family.

I received my Shodan in December 2011 from Sensei Bill Stimpson. I really enjoy being an assistant instructor with the lower belts. It has really helped me reconnect to where I came from and now see clearly where I am going. I received my Nidan in July 2014 from Master Meitatsu Yagi. In July 2017 I travelled to Okinawa to train further and received my Sandan from Sensei Akihito Yagi. I train as often as I can and look forward to my new goal of Yondan.

I have had the privilege of training in class and seminars with the following instructors:

  • Master Meitatsu Yagi, Hanshi 10th Dan (Honorary Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Akihito Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Akihiro Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Vice-President IMGKA)
  • Sensei Luis Morales, Kyoshi 8th Dan
  • Sensei Ken Trebilcock, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Jay Purdy, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Skol Batraks, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei John Bak, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Mark Matthews, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Jeff Hopping, Renshi 5th Dan
  • Sensei Bob Toth, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Bill Stimpson, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Koa Saechao, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Tom Cako, 3rd Dan
  • Sensei Blair Purdy, 2nd Dan

 


Sempai Jake Chalkley

3rd Degree Black Belt

Sempai Jake (916x1280)

I began training in Gojyu-Ryu Karate when I was around the age of seven. I started training at the Erin School of Martial Arts under Sensei Dean Tremain. When I obtained my green belt, I moved to Belwood, and therefore, began training at the Elora Gorge Karate dojo, with Sensei Bill Stimpson. I reached the rank of Shodan (first degree black belt) in June 2013 along with my good friend Matthieu Campbell.
Karate has had a very positive influence on me and I feel I have improved as a person because of it. I find it hard to think about what my life would be like if it was not for Karate. I began taking Karate because I was a big fan of the Power Rangers and I was determined to be like them. Since then, my reasons for training in Karate have evolved. I now realize that Karate trains one’s body, mind, and spirit. Karate also helps one throughout life, in and out of the dojo.

Starting in September of 2013, I had the privilege of living and training in Okinawa (Japan) for three months. While in Okinawa, I had the honour of attending school at Okinawa Shogaku Senior High School during the day, and I was able to train at the Meibukan Hombu Dojo at night. Words cannot describe the experience I had in Okinawa. I feel I have grown both as a martial artist and as a person due to my time in Okinawa. I also had the privilege of going back to Okinawa this past summer (2017) for two months and once again had an amazing experience. I look forward with great excitement to the day when I will be able to return to Okinawa.

On July 11, 2014, I had the honour of receiving my Nidan (second degree black belt) from the Yagi family!
On July 13, 2017, I had the honour of receiving my Sandan (third degree black belt) from Sensei Akihito Yagi in Okinawa!

Below is a list of some of the people I have had the privilege of training with:

  • Sensei Meitatsu Yagi, Hanshi 10th Dan (Honorary Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Akihito Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Akihiro Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Vice-President IMGKA)
  • Sensei Hiroaki Kinjo, Kyoshi 8th Dan
  • Sensei Koki Gensei, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Okisho)
  • Sensei Ken Trebilcock, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Steve Lyons, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Jay Purdy, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Fumiaki Oota, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Eikoh Azuma, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Dan Antonsen, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Mark Matthews, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei John Bak, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Bill Stimpson, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Kao Saechao, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Yae Toma, 4th Dan
  • Sensei Ric Lucas, 4th Dan Matsubayashi-Ryu (Okisho)
  • Sensei Jamie Mcdonald, 4th Dan
  • Sensei Tokeshi Norio, 3rd Dan
  • Sensei Samantha May, 3rd Dan
  • Sensei Sayaka Tsuchimochi, 3rd Dan
  • Semsei Wesley Karn, 3rd Dan
  • Sensei Eriko Itokazu, 2nd Dan
  • Sensei Dean Tremain, 2nd Dan (Erin School of Martial Arts)
  • Sensei Oliver Gessner, 2nd Dan Jiu-Jitsu (CWDHS)
  • Sensei Emerson Lacroix, 2nd Dan
  • Sensei Tommy Dalton, 1st Dan (Erin School of Martial Arts)
  • Sensei Nikolas Roberts, 1st Dan(Erin School of Martial Arts)

 


Sempai Bryon Brideau

2nd Degree Black Belt

At the age of 57, I walked in to the Elora Gorge Dojo and met Sensei Bill for the first time. As a professional sales person, I spent a lot of time in planes, cars and in meetings, and my objective was to gain a little exercise and perhaps learn something. I met both objectives and much more.
Working with everyone at the Dojo has been an enjoyable and at times challenging experience. The health benefits range for increased flexibility and strength to overcoming “butterflies” during grading. Along the way I have met some very interesting people and made some very good friends. This is an experience I would recommend to anyone.

I received my Shodan on December 16, 2015, and my Nidan on December 9, 2017 from Sensei Bill Stimpson. I have the pleasure of assisting in instruction of the junior ranks, and find that this is both enlightening and challenging.

My previous Martial Arts training has been in Wrestling, Judo (3 years) and Shotokan Karate (6 years). Lately I have been working Tai Chi.

I have had the privilege of training in class and seminars with the following instructors:

  • Master Meitatsu Yagi, Hanshi 10th Dan (Honorary Chariman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Akihito Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Ken Trebilcock, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei John Bak, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Mark Matthews, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Bill Stimpson, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Kao Saechao, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Jim Kurtz, 4th Dan
  • Sensei Dave Lyons, 3rd Dan
  • Sensei Bryce LeBlanc, 3rd Dan

As a point of interest my hobbies are spending time with my wife Susan and granddaughter Cassie, woodworking (I enjoy building everything from furniture to birdhouses) and riding a motorcycle.

I look forward to seeing you at the Dojo.


Sempai Phil McCulloch

2nd Degree Black Belt

As a small child I always wanted to learn karate but was not in a position to do so until I was in my twenties. I noticed, after just a few short weeks, the incredible impact on my life from training in a positive environment. The level of confidence that I have from training has carried over into every part of my life. I am fortunate to have started my training as a white belt with Sempai Dave Lyons who has been a constant source of inspiration to me in and out of the dojo.

Favorite quote: “If you let them anger you, you let them control you.”

I started training in 1997, and received my Shodan in 2003 and Nidan in 2005 from Hanshi Bill Hind.

I have had the privilege of training in class and seminars with the following instructors:

  • Master Meitatsu Yagi, Hanshi 10th Dan
  • Sensei Bill Hind, Hanshi 9th Dan
  • Sensei Luis Morales, Kyoshi 8th Dan
  • Sensei Jay Purdy, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei John Bak, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Kim Marshall, 6th Dan
  • Sensei Mark Matthews, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Jeff Hopping, Renshi 5th Dan
  • Sensei Mike Robertson, Renshi 5th Dan
  • Sensei Bill Stimpson, 5th Dan

 


Sempai Astrid Van Esch

2nd Degree Black Belt

After watching my daughters train for several years, I began my formal Gojyu-Ryu training in 2008 with Sensei Bill Stimpson at Elora Gorge Karate Dojo.

I enjoy the broad scope Karate covers, from the fine tuning and understanding of Kata and techniques to the more physical workout it delivers. I am fortunate to train with a wonderful group of blackbelts who have encouraged me at all levels and have inspired me throughout my journey.

While training in Okinawa in 2012, I was presented with the opportunity to be graded by the IMGKA Hombu Dojo grading panel and was awarded my Shodan by Master Meitatsu Yagi. I recevied my Nidan in July 2014 from Master Meitasu Yagi. I look forward to supporting other Karate-ka in achieving their goals as part of my continued training.

I have had the privilege of training in class and seminars with the following instructors:

  • Master Meitatsu Yagi, Hanshi 10th Dan (Honorary Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Akihito Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Akihiro Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Vice-President IMGKA)
  • Sensei Carl Wheeler, Kyoshi 8th Dan
  • Sensei Ken Trebilcock, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Jay Purdy, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Skol Batraks, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei John Bak, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Mark Matthews, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Jeff Hopping, Renshi 5th Dan
  • Sensei Bob Toth, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Bill Stimpson, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Kao Saechao, 4th Dan
  • Sensei Tom Cako, 3rd Dan
  • Sensei Blair Purdy, 2nd Dan

 


Sempai Phil Campbell

1st Degree Black Belt

I started training in 2004 at the Elora Gorge Karate Dojo, received my Shodan in the summer of 2011, and still continue my training.

One goal during my training was to strengthen myself mentally and physically to be confident and comfortable with myself and my build. Another goal that I set for myself was to help the lower ranking students in the dojo to complete their goals for the future and to help them succeed, just as the higher ranks have done for me in the past.

 

 


Sempai Matthieu Campbell

1st Degree Black Belt

Sempai Matthieu (914x1280)

I have been training for the last 8 years at the Elora Gorge Karate Dojo with Sensei Bill Stimpson. I chose to begin my training because my big brother had started it and also because of the encouragement of Sempai Dave Lyons, who would wave me in every time we would pick up my brother from class!

When my brother Sempai Phil obtained the rank of Shodan, it really motivated me to follow in his steps and to become a Sempai. Karate has improved my physical and mental awareness and I wish to pursue my training with my older brother. I received my Shodan on the 8th of June 2013 with my friend Jake Chalkley.

Here are some of many Sensei, Sempais and seminar instructors that I have had the privilege to train with:

  • Sensei Akihito Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Mark Matthews, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei John Bak, Renshi 6th Dan
  • Sensei Bill Stimpson, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Kao Saechao, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Jamie McDonald, 4th Dan
  • Sensei Wesley Karn, 3rd Dan
  • Sensei Dave Lyons, 3rd Dan
  • Sensei Phil Campbell, 1st Dan
  • Sensei Emerson Lacroix, 1st Dan
  • And Many more …

 


Francesca Van Esch

Junior Black Belt

I started karate at age 4 and within the first few weeks I knew karate was for me. I was the first to start karate in my family, then my little sister,and a few years later my dad and mom started. My dad is Sempai Jerry and my mom is Sempai Astrid.

Ever since I was little I had always wished to get my Black Belt, now here I am 8 years later (Dec 2012) and I have my Junior Black Belt (Shodan-ho). The things I like about karate are learning new katas and techniques, but the thing that I like the most is teaching. The kids that I help out like me teaching them and they should like their instructor to enjoy karate to its fullest.

Karate has also helped me out with my frustrations not only at the dojo, but at school and at home as well. Also when I was having issues at school and I wanted someone to talk to, I could go to Sensei Bill because he is not just a teacher and we are not just students we are all one big family!

I have had the privilege of training in class an seminars with the following instructors:

  • Master Meitatsu Yagi, Hanshi 10th Dan (Honorary Chairman IMGKA)
  • Sensei Akihito Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (President IMGKA)
  • Sensei Akihiro Yagi, Kyoshi 8th Dan (Vice-President IMGKA)
  • Sensei Ken Trebilcock, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Jay Purdy, Kyoshi 7th Dan
  • Sensei Mark Matthews, 6th Dan
  • Sensei Bob Toth, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Bill Stimpson, 5th Dan
  • Sensei Kao Saechao, 4th Dan
  • Sensei Tom Cako, 3rd Dan
  • Sensei Blair Purdy, 2nd Dan