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Our Instructors

East Valley Martial Arts' certified black belt instructors are all committed to sharing and upholding the traditions that have been handed down over decades. Each instructor continues to train as well as teach, and all are very capable and friendly teachers.

We also have several assistant junior black belt instructors working towards adult black belt rank. They are caring, enthusiastic, and a great help in class, especially with other kids.

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KIRK GAUGER

Renshi
Gauger Renshi is a 6th degree black belt, known as Rokudan. Gauger Renshi is married to Tull-Gauger Renshi, and this husband-and-wife team is in charge of the dojo. With over 20 years of training, their passion is watching students grow, improve and progress on their karate path. They both love helping students improve their lives through martial arts. In addition to teaching karate, Gauger Shihan instructs ground fighting and had a personal fitness training background.
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JENIFER TULL-GAUGER

Renshi
Tull-Gauger Renshi is a 6th degree black belt, known as Rokudan. Tull-Gauger Renshi is married to Gauger Renshi, and this husband-and-wife team is in charge of the dojo. Tull-Gauger Renshi also has over 20 years of training in karate. She is the head teacher in our Little Dragons Program for three-, four- and five-year-olds. As a writer and illustrator, Ms. Tull-Gauger has expanded her mentor-ship of youth through her children's picture book, "The Can-Do Karate Kid."
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BRANDON LABORDE

Sempai
LaBorde Shihan is the highest ranking student at the dojo, and is our Sempai. LaBorde Sempai has been helping with classes for many years. With his engineering background, he is often called on to be the brains of the operation. Some of the first things people notice about LaBorde Sempai are his positive attitude, his warm demeanor, and the great encouraging yet disciplined energy he brings to a class.
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MIKE BROOKS

Shihan
Brooks Shihan began training in martial arts in 1988 when he was an angry 14-year-old. Through martial arts Mr. Brooks learned discipline, integrity and most of all compassion. Over the years Brooks Shihan has been blessed to train with many noteworthy martial artists and was Sempai for Michael Newland who exposed him to East Valley Martial Arts - Kenshin Kan and the United Ryukyu Kempo Alliance. Shihan was drawn to our dojo and the U.R.K.A. due to the family orientation and sense of “people first” at both organizations. Professionally, Mr. Brooks has been in law enforcement for over 20 years and has trained law enforcement officers locally, nationally and internationally.
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BRIAN TEFFT

Shihan
Tefft Shihan has been a dedicated student from the start. Tefft Shihan helps our dojo in all kinds of ways and this versatile instructor teaches karate to all ages. In addition to teaching karate, Tefft Shihan also teaches ground fighting. His son is also a black belt Jr. Instructor, and Shihan supports the family values and discipline the program has to offer. Tefft Shihan is a people person who brings an even higher level of practicality to our team of core instructors.
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GRIFFIN TULL-GAUGER

Sensei
Tull-Gauger Sensei is one of our younger adult black belt instructors, and yet he has trained with us for over 19 years. He is an example of living traditional karate, as he continues the path from young student to sensei and beyond.
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MARTY SIEMON

Sensei
Mr. Siemon started his karate training decades ago in Okinawa while he was serving in the Marines. He was the first baby boomer that East Valley Martial Arts promoted to black belt. Mr. Siemon is one of our wisest students and supports the events, instructors and students in order to promote traditional values.

Our Founder:
Michael Newland Renshi

Newland Renshi founded what is now East Valley Martial Arts about 22 years ago. In 2002 he passed the dojo on to the Gauger Renshis. Newland Renshi still participates occasionally at the dojo, and his skills from literally decades of martial arts training make each class he instructs invaluable.