Steve Kardian is one the nation’s go-to experts on issues of women’s safety, crime prevention and risk reduction. Steve is called upon by the national media to offer solutions and interpretations to many of the nation’s most high profile cases and is a national media consultant for Inside Edition, Fox News, Fox and Friends, CNN, News Now, CBS, NBC, ABC World News, Men’s Journal, the New York Times, Cosmopolitan Magazine, Women’s Day, USA Today, the Wall Street Journal, and others.
Steve Kardian has been lecturing on crime prevention, campus safety, and women’s safety for 30 years. Prominent martial artists and educators travel from across the nation and Europe to learn the Women’s Empowerment Series from his professional training company Defend University. Steve is one of a small group of Americans to hold the rank of 3rd degree Black Belt in Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, one of the most prestigious and effective martial arts in the world today. Steve was also appointed to the Westchester County Victims Assistance advisory board where he continues to assist crime victims in their various stages of recovery. Steve has lectured across the country at colleges and universities for the prestigious CAMPUSPEAK agency, voted top agency in the country 3 out of 4 years in a row by Campus Magazine.
As a career law enforcement officer, detective, sergeant, chief criminal investigator and currently a contractor for the U.S. Marshal’s Service, Steve has a demonstrated lifelong passion for the issue of personal safety, particularly as it applies to young women. Through his media and consulting work, Steve has helped millions of young men and women better understand their role in preventing sexual assault, dating violence, stalking issues, date rape drugs, crimes against the person and the gift of good intuition. Steve teaches women how to project themselves as a hard target. His students many “saves” are evidence of his success!
Director of Training
Deborah J. Campbell recently retired from the New York State Police after completing a 32-year career with the agency. During her time with the Division of State Police, she served as a trooper and sergeant assigned to Troop K, Poughkeepsie and was later promoted to commissioned officer and transferred to Division Headquarters, where she was responsible for the formation of the Office of Human Resources. She later held the position of Colonel -Employee Relations, where she had oversight of Division’s EEO investigations, Recruitment, Promotional Examinations, Employee Assistance Program, Personnel and Labor Relations. Prior to her retirement she was assigned to the Office of the Superintendent, where she was responsible for oversight of the Protective Services Unit as well as Planning and Research and special projects for the NYSP.
Ms. Campbell served on the Accreditation Council for NYS Division of Criminal Justice Services, ensuring that law enforcement agencies met the standards necessary for accreditation and was a frequent speaker at events and conferences across the country. She was involved in the formation of the New York Women In Law Enforcement organization, where she was a part of the original Board of Directors and served as the first President of NYWLE. She remains an active member of the NYWLE Board of Directors, and is involved with the International Association of Chiefs of Police, where she currently serves as a consultant, providing leadership training for police agencies both nationally and internationally. Her passion for fitness and education has propelled her to serve as a coach and mentor throughout her career. Deb recently received certification from Defend University as a Girls on Guard Instructor.
Deborah holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from SUNY Cortland and a Master of Arts Degree in Criminal Justice from the Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government. She is the proud mother of two children, ages 24 and 21.
Director of Operations
Daniel J. Tuczinski is Executive Director of K2P. Dan is a practicing Attorney with 35 years of experience in legal liability and public safety issues. Dan’s legal credentials also include governmental, administrative and regulatory compliance for both public and private sectors. Dan is also an experienced trial lawyer whose advocacy has included civil, criminal, administrative and arbitration cases. Dan is an experienced martial artist and self defense instructor having trained in multiple self defense systems. He is a founding instructor for the ABC Women’s self defense program and was instrumental in bringing this popular education and training program to high school graduatingM seniors. He is also a certified Girls on Guard instructor and has trained with some of the top self defense instructors in the country. Dan is also a featured speaker for the New York State Bar association on varied topics, as well as a guest speaker on public safety and legal liability issues for the media and private organizations.
The Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) held the formal design education for Adriana Tuczinski. She earned an AAS in Advertising Design and continued onto the Bachelor of Arts program for Package Design. She found her passion developing packages for home decorations, cosmetics and fragrances during an internship at Avon. Afterwards, she advanced to an Art Directorship at the Pepsi Cola Company, where she invested the next 28 years. Advancing to Senior Art Director, Adriana was the “visual brand owner” of numerous brands under her direction; Aquafina, Sierra Mist, Mt. Dew, Lipton Teas, Propel Waters and many more. Adriana also managed numerous Pepsi brands internationally, which broadened her design understanding for cultural relevancy and appropriate marketplace considerations.
Director of Marketing and Design
Sifu Eric has been studying the martial arts for over 40 years. He is one of the few full instructors of Jeet Kune Do in Central New York. Guro Eric is a member of the Francis Fong Instructor Association. In 2012, he was inducted into the Martial Arts Hall of Fame. Guro Eric teaches from a perspective of street tactics and security. He has brought several martial artists to the instructor level. He concentrates on the spiritual side of the martial arts and his goal is to help fellow martial artists reach enlightenment. Sifu Eric has developed his own comprehensive Street Self Defense System and Women’s Self Defense Program that are highly regarded among the martial arts community
Jasmine Liverpool joined the K2P team as an actress in K2P’s first campus outreach video. Because of her background in the Domestic Violence Unit of the Kings County District Attorney’s Office and her participation at Saint Rose College’s Take Back the Night sexual assault awareness event, she recognizes the importance of the college campus sexual assault awareness diaspora.
As an avid public speaker eager to spark dialogue amongst college students, Jasmine has facilitated K2P presentations in New York State and will continue to help spread the word in order to empower both woman and men within ears reach.
Jasmine serves her community as an attorney for the Schenectady County Conflict Defender’s Office. When she is not working or representing K2P, she enjoys acting, boxing and dancing.
Stephanie is a principal attorney with the law firm of Tuczinski, Cavalier & Gilchrist PC. Stephanie concentrates her practice in the areas of land use planning, legal and business issues, environmental review, and corporate and commercial advice. Her skills from mediation training at the Akerman Institute in Manhattan honed her ability to bring parties together to resolve difficult issues.
Stephanie is co-founder and president of Coesa, Inc., a not for profit pursuing the renovation of an historic building in the Saratoga Spa State Park for a holistic wellness and retreat center. She currently serves on the boards of the Saratoga County Bar Association, has been an elected member of the House of Delegates of the New York State Bar Association, and has served as the president of the Saratoga County Bar Association. Her significant involvement in the community throughout her legal career also includes: Malta Business and Professional Association 5K race committee, Saratoga Hospital Legacy Council, Co-Chair and Co-Founder of the Alzheimer’s Association Memory Walk, Leadership Saratoga, Leadership Saratoga Mentoring and Alumni Associations, Heart Ball Committee, and Siena Pre-Law Mentor.
Stephanie graduated from Albany Law School in 1996 and from Siena College, magna cum laude, in 1993. Stephanie has been featured in Saratoga Today as one of Saratoga County’s Top 6 Women of Influence, in Success Magazine, Ltd. as a Woman of Distinction and in the Saratoga County’s 20 under 40.
In her free time, Stephanie prefers to be outdoors and active. She is an avid hiker, runner and biker, and seasonally paddleboards, skis, and snowshoes. Stephanie has a strong interest in helping others and sees her involvement with K2P as a great way to meet this personal goal.
William Barry is a K2P certified instructor who joined the team through Steve Kardian with whom he is a certified Girls on Guard Womens Self Defense instructor under. Will has 20 years experience in several different areas of martial arts with competition experience in Boxing, Kickboxing and Mixed Martial Arts. Combined with the martial arts experience Will also has extensive training and experience in the areas of Security in large group settings as well as one on one bodyguard work. Will has devoted his career and life path to educating, empowering and inspiring both clients as well as professional personal trainers in the Capital District through both hands on and lecture based education. Will is also an adept speaker having had the opportunity and experience of presenting both research material to the professional scientific community as well as speaking to groups in the public sector in the areas of self-improvement and motivation. Beyond this work will is an active advocate in the MMA community as an ABC Certified Judge, Official and Referee. Beyond being an advocate for MMA he is also a Pitbull advocate and lover who has 2 rescues of his own but also looks to educate the masses on the misrepresentation of a dog, with a heart as big as their head.
Virginia Giugliano is a Board Certified ObGyn and second degree Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do. She has 20 years of clinical experience caring for women of all ages, including those who have suffered from abuse and assault. She left clinical practice in 2013 to focus on her health and wellness business, which she started 8 years ago. Virginia now enjoys assisting clients to lost fat and gain lean muscle, enhance athletic performance, and age gracefully. She has studied Tae Kwon Do under Master Doo Young Pai for 12 years, and looks forward to attaining her third degree black belt. Virginia is an enthusiastic member of K2P and is excited to share her knowledge and expertise in self-defense with young women.
Virginia completed a combined undergraduate and medical degree program through Union College and Albany Medical College in 1991. She completed her residency in ObGyn in 1995 achieved her Board Certification in 1998.
At home, Virginia enjoys spending time with her two teenage children, performing classical piano music, and attending live music events.
A board-certified Registered Nurse with over 10 years of experience as a Field Clinical Representative and Sales Representative with Boston Scientific Corporation (formerly, Guidant Corporation), Tamara Rapisarda is currently a founder of Cardiac Remote Monitoring Systems (RMS), LLC, for implantable cardiac devices. Soon after starting her cardiac nursing care career at Albany Medical Center, Tamara transitioned to a nurse clinician in the electrophysiology department and conducted several device and drug research studies to test innovative medication options for patients suffering from heart arrhythmias.
Over 10 years ago, Tamara embarked on a journey to fulfill her long-standing passion for martial arts training and helping to promote safety and security in one’s life. With her family by her side, she learned the art of Tae Kwon Do and self-defense, and she is now a second-degree black belt. In addition to her extensive participation in martial arts competitions, Tamara also has training in Hapkido and traditional weapons. In the spirit of giving back to the martial arts community, Tamara serves fellow martial artists through instruction, judging at tests and competitions, and helping guide her school’s demo and competition teams. She recently attained certification from Defend University as a “Girls on Guard” instructor.
In her work as a Hospice volunteer, Tamara provides comfort and social support to patients and their caregivers. Her support for patients ranges from companionship, to facilitating refection on their lives, to helping them live out the ends of their lives with dignity. For caregivers, Tamara offers respite and a listening ear.
A resident of upstate New York, Tamara enjoys (with just a slight competitive edge) both winter and summer sports with her family. Two of her three children are junior black belts in Tae Kwon Do, with the third preparing to test. Those who know Tamara best characterize her as ever the optimist with a vibrant smile, an armchair therapist with a never-ending supply of love and support (except on April Fool’s Day), and the best customer at the local animal shelter.
Stacey Sullivan graduated with a B.A. in Biology from Siena College and a Doctor of Medicine degree from Albany Medical College. She completed her Family Medicine residency program with the United States Navy at Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton, CA. After residency training, she served as the Senior Medical Officer aboard the USS McKee (AS-41) and then as an attending physician at Naval Hospital Guam. As a family physician, she has counseled and treated victims of violence, abuse and assault and is passionate about teaching men, women and children how to protect themselves and how to protect others.
Her martial arts training began in January of 2006 under the teaching of Masters Dominick and Jeanene Violante at Avon Kempo and Aikido Academy in Connecticut. She currently holds the rank of 3rd degree black belt in Shaolin Kempo. Weapons she is currently studying include the Chinese bo staff, Chinese broadsword, tonfa, naginata, cane and the three sectional staff. She also assists Master Dominick Violante with the WAVE (Women Against Violence Everywhere) Self Defense Program. Stacey currently resides in Connecticut with her husband, Dr. Paul Sullivan, and their three children.
Shannon Caravello has been a Health and Safety Instructor at Kingsborough Community College, CUNY, in Brooklyn, NY since 2007. Trained in classical Japanese Jujutsu and mixed martial arts, she specializes in teaching Women’s Self
Defense, CPR and First Aid to inner city and suburban students. Shannon holds a Master’s of Science in Physical Education from Brooklyn College and is currently working on a Doctorate of Public Health at SUNY Downstate Medical Center. Her areas of interest include violence prevention, childhood obesity and urban agriculture. In addition, she holds her Classroom
Teacher Initial Certification in Physical Education from the New York State Education Department and is a certified Instructor for the American Red Cross as well as the Women’s Self-Defense Institute in NY.
Master Gould has been involved with martial arts for the past 20 years, with a primary focus in Taekwondo, in which he has attained the rank of 5th degree black belt. He is the owner and Chief Instructor at Gould’s Martial Arts Center located in Valatie New York. This school has been operational for the past 5 years, teaching Taekwondo and Hapkido to men, women, and children. Russ has conducted many self-defense classes and seminars for both children and adults. Their most popular event is the “Women’s Strike and Escape” self-defense class, which has now expanded to an 8-week course. Master Gould is very passionate about this training and is committed to providing others with the tools they need to remain safe!
Robert J. Thomas has a lifelong involvement in the martial arts. In the past ten years, he has dedicated himself to teaching reality-based self-defense, most recently becoming a member of the K2P Team. In 2014, Robert was named “Self Defense Instructor of the Year” by two different international martial arts organizations. This honor was bestowed by the International Circle of Masters & The World Karate Union Hall of Fame.
Robert is a Sensei – 3rd degree black belt in Shinko-Ryu Karate and teaches this art at Keystone College in LaPlum, PA. This Japanese style of karate is a traditional art with its headquarters in Tokyo. Robert has developed a reality-based system of personal protection called Tsunami Self Defense & Street Smart Combatives, with a wide variety of specialized classes for different segments of the community.
Additionally, Robert is a certified Girls On Guard instructor under the direction of Steve Kardian. He teaches the Guarding Our Girls and Girls On Guard classes at several area colleges and universities in PA.
In addition to being a member of K2P, Dr. Sawyer is an Associate Professor and Associate Chairperson in the Department of Behavioral & Community Health at the University of Maryland’s School of Public Health, teaching courses in human sexuality, and adolescent health. He earned his bachelor’s degrees from the University of London and George Mason University, Master’s from the University of Virginia and doctorate from the University of Maryland.
His area of research interest is adolescent sexuality with a particular focus on campus sexual assault and date rape. Dr. Sawyer has worked particularly closely with college athletes and is a recognized presenter for NCAA sponsored programs on sexual assault. He is the writer and producer of a film, “Playing the Game 2” designed specifically to promote discussion around the subject of sexual assault on college campuses. Dr. Sawyer has received 13 national and international film awards for developing sexuality-related media, and received numerous teaching awards, including the prestigious Regent’s Award for Teaching Excellence, identifying the outstanding teacher among five thousand faculty in the University of Maryland system, and was recognized nationally by the Association of Schools of Public Health as the 2012 Outstanding Teacher of the year.
Dr. Sawyer has published extensively and is a nationally known speaker having made over 450 presentations at schools, colleges and universities throughout the United States. His teaching has gained national attention in the Washington Post and most recently he has appeared on the Today Show and the Tyra Banks show, and served as a consultant with MTV.
Sifu Mark Messare is a 7th Degree APLEA BlackBelt who has been teachingmartial arts for 17 years and has trained in both Wing Chun Kung Fu and IsraeliSpecial Forces Krav Maga. He also has 13 years experience in the Air National Guard where he worked full time in Military Law Enforcement and as a Civilian Peace Officer on Base. Since 9/11 Mark has had a desire to train others in Krav Maga and effective reality based self-defense. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Organizational Management and has set up A.P.L.E.A. (American Private Law Enforcement Association) in an effort to “Equip Leaders to Defend Freedom”. His students have gone on to open their own Krav Maga schools, serve in elite military units and join Law Enforcement organizations across the U.S. He also has a vast experience with firearms and tactical applications of several weapons systems.
Mark currently holds multiple Instructor Certifications. His current organization of APLEA Krav Maga provided certification and ranking for senior martial arts instructors across the United States and in other countries. Currently there are over a dozen affiliate schools under his direction.
Mark is married with 4 children, ages 17,16,15 & 6 and is currently hosting a foreign exchange student. As a father of kids headed into college in the next 3 years, he is very concerned with helping to keep college campuses safe and believes that the K2P training is a wonderful way to help make this happen.
After graduating high school, Lisa Loughran attended college and became a New York State Trooper in March 1992. As a Trooper, Lisa was active in all aspects of public service and spent time as a recruiter and on the protective services unit assigned to protect the Governor of New York State. During her 21-year tenure with the New York State Police, Lisa became a leader and rose through the ranks eventually becoming the first female to run the Bureau of Criminal Investigation at the Troop level. This position held the title of Captain and required her to employ leadership, investigative, communication, and response skills as well as requiring the ability to work with other agencies and local communities.
Lisa also received certification as a Drug Recognition Expert and as an instructor through the Division of Criminal Justice Services and enjoyed teaching recruits on the topic of Standardized Field Sobriety Testing. Lisa also received certification as a Fitness Coordinator and enjoyed testing potential candidates and members on the physical agility tests.
In 2012, she retired as a Captain and accepted a position with Ulster County Community College as an adjunct professor teaching Criminal Justice. Additionally she teaches a block of instruction at the Ulster County Police Academy. In retirement Lisa went on to receive her certification as a group fitness instructor and personal training and is the founder and creator of P.A.F.T.; police/personal fitness training and enjoys helping others become fit and to recognize the importance of healthy eating and regular exercise.
Lisa is married with three children and is very active in her community volunteering as a leader with the Girl Scouts, as a merit badge counselor with the Boy Scouts, is an active member of her church and has spearheaded several charity events within her hometown.
She recently attained certification from the Women’s Self Defense Institute as a Girls on Guard instructor and is excited to add this her repertoire and to continue to inspire and empower women of all ages. Lisa also runs a local boot camp for fitness and is an active member of the Dutchess County Police Chief’s Association and New York Women in Law Enforcement.
Laura Squillante lives in Kinderhook (Columbia County NY), with her husband and 4 children. She is a self-employed businesswoman who has worked as an Agent for State Farm for over 27 years. Laura, along with her daughter and fellow K2P instructor Katie Pozzi, and other family members have trained in self-defense together for over 10 years. All family members have achieved Black Belts in Tae Kwon Do and believe in the importance of preparing both physically and mentally to avoid bad situations and ensure safety.
Kaitlin Pozzi is a 19 years old college freshman studying Business Administration. She recently received a Master’s rank in TaeKwonDo and has a purple belt in Hapkido. Katie has been involved in martial arts for 12 years and has made this a part of her lifestyle. As a student, Katie believes in the need for a program like K2P that will provide students with important information and skills to keep them safe.
Kat Colucci has been a force for women since she began her fitness imprint nearly twenty years ago. While her professional career has been in corporate directorial positions, Kat has always maintained her passion for instructing and motivating women through fitness and self -defense.
Published in best-selling book “Advanced Krav Maga” by David Kahn, Kat is the first female outside of Israel to be certified in the Israeli hand-to-hand combat system. She achieved her instructor certification by the Israeli Krav Maga Association Grand Master himself. Kat discovered her niche when she obtained an additional certification as Girls on Guard instructor with founder Steve Kardian. Kat recently appeared on Fox News with Kardian, demonstrating self-defense techniques.
Kat’s teaching experience includes law enforcement, women’s self-defense, and child anti-abduction. She feels fortunate to have the opportunity to both train students on self- defense tactics as well as offer seminars on empowerment, safety, and wellness.
Kat lives by her favorite quote “Be a voice, not an echo” by pursuing her passion to arm women with more than just self-defense tactics; she empowers her students with life-long weapons of self-confidence and respect.
After graduating high school, June Worden enlisted in the United State Marine Corps where she spent 12 years. Upon her discharge, June joined the New York State Police in 1990, where she served as a Master Instructor and Evaluator, certifying instructors for the New York State Police Academy. She specialized in leadership and became a certified defensive tactics instructor.
June also received certification as a Human Resources Counselor, investigating and counseling fellow State Police employees regarding complaints of sexual harassment and/or hostile work environment.
In 2011, she retired as a Lieutenant, and accepted a position with Syracuse University working as a Peace Officer. June received training in all aspects of the Clery Act, which requires all colleges and universities who receive federal funding to share information about crime on campus, and their efforts to improve campus safety, as well as, inform the public of crime in or around campus.
June currently serves as a Special Patrol Officer for the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office. Her duties include assisting the Department of Social Services in providing a variety of services to some of the county’s most vulnerable citizens.
She recently attained certification from the Women’s Self Defense Institute as a Girls on Guard instructor. June looks forward to empowering women of all ages to take control of their own personal safety.
Don Johnston is a carpenter with over 30 years of experience in construction. He has over 20 years of experience in martial arts and self-defense. He also has extensive experience as a security specialist and bouncer. This experience has given him a unique opportunity of seeing and dealing with real life violence. Don has been teaching self-defense for over 20 years.
Leo Wright is a locally known fitness ambassador, personal trainer, fitness model and group fitness expert. Leo has a tremendous amount of experience developing diverse, compelling workouts at several elite gyms in the NYC area, including New York Health & Racquet Club, Crunch, Just Cycle and Manhattan Plaza.
Leo’s experiences at these gyms inspired him to create his own company called, “Fitness the Wright Way, LLC,” which includes his new cutting edge workout called, “Kick-hopping.” Kick-hopping incorporates kick boxing, high intensity interval training and dance to hip-hop music. Fitness the Wright Way’s mantra is, “if you want something you never had, you gotta do something you’ve never done!” Leo is passionate about fitness and has always motivated people with his energy and enthusiasm since he was a kid. Leo views himself as a thermostat and changes the environment wherever he goes.
Leo makes it a habit to give back to the community and Fitness the Wright Way has partnered with Healthfirst (an insurance company) to promote healthy living and lifestyles for their employees and in the communities. Leo is Healthfirst’s fitness ambassador, personal trainer and group fitness expert and travels throughout the tri-state area representing Healthfirst at different events to promote wellness including: Circle of Sisters, Bronx Harmony Day with the NYPD, St. John’s Health Expo, and the American Diabetes Association Expo at the Jacob Javits Center. Leo also goes into the inner city communities and promotes fitness as Healthfirst’s ambassador at events such as: PS 155 Plant Day, PS 55 Back to School Event, Harlem Wellness Event, Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration, and Brownville Wellness.
In 2015 Leo won Fitorflop Season 3 – an online reality series to find America’s Next Fitness Star. Leo’s high-energy kick-hopping workout, charismatic and motivational personality make him great for TV. He’s passionate about helping others stay healthy and meet their fitness goals. These attributes led to the birth of Leo’s most recent endeavor, where he is the creator, producer and tv talk show host of Fitness The Wright Way TV.
Fitness the Wright Way TV is a Fitness Talk Show in which Leo features the “best of the best” in the Fitness Industry including fitness experts, nutritionists, wellness coaches, personal trainers and other fitness gurus that have a brand to market. Fitness the Wright Way TV is aired live and also taped and later aired on community based channels throughout the Tri-State area at a later date in over 8 million homes.
John Borter is the Owner/Chief Instructor of the Modern Self-Defense Academy in Albany, NY. With more than 25 years in the martial arts, he holds the rank of 6th degree Black Belt and was awarded the title of “Professor” (Teacher of Teachers) in the martial arts. He holds Black Belt ranks in a number of martial arts including Modern Jujitsu, Small Circle Jujitsu, Tae Kwon Do, Hapkido, and Kyusho-Jitsu, and has extensive experience in numerous other arts, including Jeet Kune Do and Filipino Martial Arts. He is a full instructor in SiFu Larry Hartsell’s Jeet Kune Do Grappling Association and holds a Level 1 Instructor Certification in KAPAP/Krav Maga under Major Avi Nardia, certificates in Military Combatives and Police Defensive Tactics, and is an internationally recognized self-defense instructor. In 1997, Mr. Borter was inducted into the World Martial Arts Hall of Fame for “Outstanding Contributions to the Martial Arts”.
Mr. Borter is also the Founder and Chief Instructor of the ABC Women’s Self-Defense program. This program has been widely taught to thousands of women and is one of the most fun, popular, and critically acclaimed women’s empowerment programs of its kind in the Northeast. Mr. Borter also teaches self-defense courses to the general public, members of the military, law enforcement, security companies, and bouncers. He is also the Director/Head Instructor of the PressurePoint Self-Defense (PPSD) System and PressurePoint Defense Tactics (PPDT) Systems, and offers instruction and certification for law enforcement, security, and civilians in the use of the Kubotan Self-Defense Keychain.
He has been a featured speaker and self-defense expert on WAMC radio, as well as the subject of numerous radio, television, newspaper, and magazine articles. He is a highly sought martial arts and self-defense instructor, teacher, and expert.
Dominick Violante began Martial Arts training in 1977. He was inducted into the Universal Martial Arts Hall of Fame in July 2003, and the USA Hall of Fame in 2004. He is a Master Level Practitioner 8th Dan Black Belt of Kempo Karate and is ranked 4th Dan Black Belt in Aikido. In addition, he holds a black sash in White Crane/Long Fist Kung-Fu. He is the owner and head instructor of Avon Kempo and Aikido Academy in Canton, CT.
Dominick served as a police officer in Milford, MA from 1979-2000 and was an instructor for the Massachusetts Criminal Justice System, teaching state, local and Auxiliary Police Officers for more than 15 years. Program. Master Violante had a seat on the Board of Directors for the Massachusetts Reserve Police Federation as the advisor for defensive tactics. He has developed numerous self-defense programs recognized by the Massachusetts Board of Education. In addition, he has served on both Narcotics and Organized Crime Task Forces in Massachusetts. He currently serves as the Public Safety Training and Education Resource Officer for the Hartford Health Care System.
His current certifications include tactical handcuffing, expandable baton, verbal influence and defense (verbal judo), ALICE active shooter program, L.E.O. Gun and Knife Disarm program and R.A.D. (Rape Aggressive Defense) program. He is also the founder of the LEGND (Law Enforcement Gun and kNife Disarm) program as well as the WAVE (Women Against Violence Everywhere) women’s self-defense program.
Dave served in the United States Army from 1973 to 1976. He obtained his Carry Concealed Handgun Permit from Albany County. Dave also earned a certificate from the Lethal Force Institute on the Judicial Use of Deadly Force.
Dave has over twenty years of experience in the field of martial arts. His enthusiasm and positive attitude towards the arts and learning is contagious and influences everyone around him. Dave is a Master in Hapkido, a Third Degree Black Belt in Combat Hapkido as well as a First Degree Black Belt in Taekwondo.
Dave has three adult daughters and four beautiful grandchildren. He enjoys spending time with his family, visiting historical sites, and reading historical non-fiction.
Carol Ann Williams began with Women’s Self Defense almost a decade ago as a Certified Instructor with Defend University. Her passion for self-defense led her to form her own business in Jan 2009. Instinctive Defense, LLC was formed to teach women about awareness & to empower women. She had begun with Tang Soo Do where she acquired a Brown Belt before moving on to Women’s Self Defense and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
Carol Ann loves fitness and health and has competed nationally with NPC. She enjoys traveling while teaching and meeting others throughout the world. She has been a part of several interviews including The Natural Physique, The Journal News, and Blue Belt & Beyond by Rich Mello, The Urban Athletica, and Girl Jitsu. She has also appeared on WHAG TV channel 25 in Hagerstown, MD demonstrating self-defense techniques and sharing awareness knowledge. She has been a part of the Sexual Assault Response Team in Martinsburg, WV.
She has had the opportunity to teach women self- defense courses at several Universities including West Virginia University, Fairmont State University, Shepherd University, and Blue Ridge Community & Technical College. After 2 years of perseverance, she took on the opportunity to teach over 100 girls with a six week pilot program at Musselman Middle School in Inwood, WV. She has also done lecturing at 4-H meetings, women shelters, Girl Scouts, health fairs & many more groups. She enjoys attending sorority meetings speaking on awareness and educating on date rape drugs.
Carol Ann has taught many females as young as age 9 and as old as in their 60’s. Not only does Carol Ann speak on safety awareness but she also speaks on walking with confidence, being a leader and how important exercise is to being a confident female. She has a way of motivating females to be stronger and more confident. She is known for her understanding of each person’s circumstance and patience as a teacher. She firmly believes that a female’s first instinct is the start of their natural response to self-defense.
April Dearden has certifications in Nutrition and as a Corporate Wellness Coach. She has worked in the medical field for over 12 years and saw a need for a program that focused on overall wellness and not just quick fix “diets”. Over the years she has developed programs that help individuals as well as groups establish healthy habits that are sustainable for life. April is an author, speaker and blogger who lives in New York with her son, 2 pups and a gold fish.
Jeanne started her martial arts training later in life and has been training in Jeet Kune Do for over 10 years with Guro Eric Winfree. She likes all aspects of the martial arts from the physical challenges to the spiritual pursuits of martial etiquette and virtue. She has a master degree in marketing and is currently working on her MBA.