Kenwa Mabuni (1889-1952) is the founder of Shito Ryu Karate. Master Mabuni studied under two famous Okinawa masters: Yatsune Itosu of Shuri Te and Kaneryu Higaonna of Naha Te. Mabuni blended their teachings into a new system he called Shito Ryu. Shito is a name composed of Japanese characters from both instructors names. Shito Ryu distinguishes itself from other styles by incorporating Kobudo, the art of weaponry.
Shogo Kuniba (1935-1992) was born in the city of Fuji-Yoshida-Shi, son of Kosei Kuniba. He began his Karate training at the age of 5 in his father's Dojo. At the age of 12, he began training with Master Mabuni in Shito Ryu and was soon promoted to Shodan. Master Kuniba trained in Karate, Judo, Iai-do and studied Kobudo under Master Shinken Taira.
Teruo Hayashi (1924-2004) Master Hayashi began his martial arts career studying Judo and received his third degree black belt. After a confrontation against two karate students in which he lost, he began to study karate under Kosei Kuniba and Master Mabuni. With his natural ability and diligence, he earned his Sho Dan in only six months. Master. Hayashi also studied under Sensei Nakaima of Ryuei Ryu and Sensei Nagamine of the Matsubayashi Ryu. In his day, Master Hayashi was recognized as one of the world’s leading experts in Kobudo.
Ryusho Sakagami (1915-1993) was born in Hyogo Prefecture, Kawanishi City of Japan. He began practicing the martial art of Kendo around the age of ten and later studied Iai-Do. In 1934, he became interested in the art of Karate-Do and Kobudo and was later encouraged by his Sensei to continue his studies with Master Kenwa Mabuni and Kobudo under Master Shiinken Taira. Sakagami became famous for his knowledge of all Japanese Budo and was regarded as a walking encyclopedia of all styles, lineage, technique and Kata. He also distinguished himself to a level of 5th Dan in Aikido, 5th Dan in Judo and 7th Dan in Jukendo (Rifle and Bayonet).
Dr. Timothy M. Brooks, Souke (Founder) the son of missionary parents, traveled to Japan in the early 1960’s. While there, Dr. Brooks became interested in the study of Karate and studied under Masters Shogo Kuniba, Ryusho Sakagami and Teruo Hayashi. During his time in Japan, Dr. Brooks toured internationally giving Karate demonstrations and specializing in Tameshi Wari. His love of Karate and faith in God brought him to the United States in 1970. Since then, Dr. Brooks has graduated over 700 Black Belts and founded Kurokawa-Ha Shito Ryu Kai. Souke Brooks, well known in Japanese Karate, is one of the living legends of Karate-Do today. We are fortunate to have him as Head Instructor at Kurokawa Martial Arts. His expertise and experience keep us on the cutting edge of Traditional Karate-Do.
Lady Teruko Kurokawa Brooks was born in Kyusho, Japan. Spared from the atomic bomb of WW II, she met Dr. Brooks at his father’s Christian mission where she entrusted her life to Jesus Christ in 1961. Her karate career began in 1967 and continued as she assisted her husband, with their numerous Dojo. Lady Teruko, Renshi, is a multi-generation daughter of the Kurokawa clan whose Samurai warriors served under Lord Shimazu of Kagoshima during Feudal Japan. Her study of Karate has deepened her appreciation of the martial arts of her country. As a mother and grandmother, her concern is for this generation of children. She believes Karate plays an important role in building discipline, courage and character in children, contributing a positive element for society and the future.
Carmen "Teru" Diaz, Shihan, has been studying and teaching under Master Brooks and Lady Teruko for over 25 years. Interested in the Martial Arts since very young, she began training in 1987 when she realized her need for Self Defense. A graduate of Florida State University and daughter of two Master Teachers, Dr. Juan Abel Diaz and Dr. Clara P. Diaz, Shihan Teru found teaching Karate to be the destiny she was born to fulfill. Shihan Teru has written a number of manuals on Karate, Self Defense as well as developed various programs at Kurokawa Martial Arts. She has won numerous tournament medals in Kobudo, Kata and Kumite and is currently the Head Coach for Team Kurokawa. Shihan Teru holds a 5th Dan in Karate, 3rd Dan in Kobudo and 1st Dan in Iai-Do. In spite of all these accomplishments, her greatest pride and joy comes from raising and homeschooling her son Ben.