Home‎ > ‎


Sensei (Chief Instructor)

Cesare Marino
Sensei Marino began his martial arts training in Treviso, Italy, in 1972 under the tutelage of one of Italy's great Karate instructors, Sensei Ofelio Michielan. Sensei Marino received his black belt in 1975 from Shihan Hiroshi Shirai, one of the world's leading Shotokan masters. In addition to this training, Sensei Marino attended the arduous instructor's training program under Shihan Shirai and Shihan Taiji Kase, both students of the father of modern Karate, Gichin Funakoshi, and two of the Japan Karate Association's (JKA) original four great masters who were dispatched from Japan to Europe in the mid-1960s. After moving to the US to earn his doctorate, Sensei Marino continued to study under Master Teruyuki Okazaki - another student of Master Funakoshi who was dispatched to the US and established the 50,000-member International Shotokan Karate Federation – a former affiliate of the JKA. In 1980, Sensei Marino was captain of the Kata (forms) team that placed first at the East Coast Karate Championships and second at the US National Championships in Philadelphia.

After moving to the Washington area, Sensei Marino taught Karate at the Washington, DC Karate Club in Georgetown until he established the Alexandria Shotokan Karate Club (ASKC) at the Alexandria YMCA in 1985 where it continues to operate as an independent, non-competitive Shotokan Karate dojo that adheres to the basic principles and traditions in the spirit of tranditonal Shotokan Karate.

Sensei Marino continues his senior-level training in his frequent travels to Italy under the tutelage of his long-time Sensei Ofelio Michielan, a senior associate of Master Shirai.

Associate Instructors

Gabriel Riego de Dios
Began studying Shotokan Karate in 1973. In 1978, he studied under Sensei's Arsenio Bawingan and Edgar Kapawen - athletic staff of the Philippine Military Academy in Baguio City , Philippines . Sensei’s Bawingan and Kapanwen were senior instructors and the first generation students of Master Kunio Sasaki – Japan Karate Association headquarters, Manila . After retiring from the Philippines Army Special Forces, Gabriel came to the US in 1989 and trained under Sensei’s Emil Valdez and Joji Mercado under the supervision of Master Yutaka Yaguchi, International Shotokan Karate Federation, Daly City, CA; the Las Vegas School of Shotokan Karate under Sensei James Tawatao of the late-Master Osamu Ozawa Karate-do; and the Traditional Karate School, Lancaster, CA.

Dan Santillo
Began Shotokan Karate training in 1985 with Sensei Marino (attained Shodan rank in December 1993).  He has trained in a variety of martial arts including Shaolin Kung Fu (YMAA Boston), Contemporary Wushu (Chinese Martial Arts Institute), Aikido, Jujutsu (AKK Shin Dojo), and Enshin Karate (Enshin Karate of Norther Virginia).