MELISSA bELL SENSEI
Melissa Bell Sensei is the Chief Instructor at the 12th Street Aikido Dojo in Sarasota, Florida.
Bell Sensei began her training in 1992 at the Aikido Shobukan Dojo in Washington D.C. under Mitsugi Saotome Shihan, and other senior instructors including Patty Saotome Sensei and Frank Bell Sensei.
Bell Sensei presently holds the rank of 5th degree black belt (Godan) in Aikido (A.S.U. and Aikikai) and has received all of her ranks directly from Saotome Sensei. In addition, she has received the honor of the Ueshiba Juku designation from Saotome Sensei. She has also trained through the rank of Shodan in Shotokan Karate under Rick Hotton, Sensei at the West Wind Karate Dojo in Sarasota, FL.
One of her favorite quotes from Saotome Sensei: “The secret of aikido? there are three: Distance… Timing… and Looking Good!”
Duane "Peewee" Jones Sensei
Peewee Jones Sensei started his Aikido practice in 1973 and started training under Saotome Shihan in 1975. He has been an active member and instructor for over 40 years. He currently holds the rank of Rokudan (6th Dan) through Saotome Shihan, ASU and World Aikido Headquarters in Japan. Jones Sensei has also been award the title "Ueshiba Juku" by Saotome Sensei symbolizing his direct relationship with Saotome Shihan and the founder of Aikido, O'Sensei's, teachings. Peewee Sensei is also the Dojo Cho of 12th Street Aikido. He is known to be at the dojo most days to welcome new students and share old time stories.
Daryl Schrader Sensei
Daryl Schrader Sensei took his first Aikido class in 1967 under Koichi Tohei. When Saotome Shihan came to the US in 1975, he was among the first students to practice with him. He currently holds the rank of Godan (5th dan) in Aikido through Saotome Shihan, ASU and the World Aikido Headquarters in Japan. Schrader Sensei has also been awarded the "Ueshiba Juku" title by Saotome Sensei symbolizing his direct relationship with Saotome Shihan and the founder of Aikido, O'Sensei's, teachings
SCOTT ELLIS SENSEI
Scott Ellis started Aikido in 2006 and currently holds the rank of Nidan (2nd degree black belt).