In 1975, Saotome Shihan left his highly respected position as a senior instructor at World Aikido Headquarters in Tokyo to come to the United States, where he began Aikido Schools of Ueshiba (ASU), and established the now called 12th Street Dojo.
Ikeda Sensei and Suzuki sensei.
In 19 , Saotome Shihan went on to establish Sobukan Dojo in Washington DC. In 1978, Hiroshi Ikeda Shihan, a direct student of Saotome Shihan, came from Japan as a Sandan ( 3rd degree black belt) to Sarasota. In 1980, Ikeda Shihan left to establish his dojo (Boulder Aikikai), in Boulder, CO. In 199 , Frank Bell Sensei came down from the Shobukan Dojo in Washington DC to be Cheif Instructor of the Sarasota Dojo and assist in the building of Saotome Shihan's Aiki Shrine Dojo in Myakka City, FL. After Bell Sensei's untimely passing in 199 , the Sarasota dojo was run by a board of directors including Peewee Jones Sensei and Steve McPeck Sensei.
The dojo is now owned by Peewee Jones Sensei (Dojo Cho) and run by a small board of directors consisting of active dojo members.