About Our Instructors

Soke' Jeff Santella

Soke’ Jeffs 35 years of Martial Arts Training combined with 30 years in Law Enforcement gives him a well rounded & realistic insight to teaching . He has competed in over 12 arts and earned “Black Belt” or Teaching recognition in 9 styles . As well as being Southwest Florida’s first “UFC” certified  trainer.

Renshi Terry Zornes (Active)

Renshi Terry is a Sr. Instructor 6th Degree Black Belt. Known for his leadership and Bushido, Terry is one of the few that can actually give Soke a “Worry Free” day off. Renshi has been training and teaching with Martial Arts University for 23 years.

O'Sensei Ferd DeSantis (Active)

A true testament to your not to old for “Martial Arts University” is our beloved “Great Grandpa Sensei” Ferd. He started in his 60’s and is still going strong in his 90s’ A third degree Black Belt and a fine example of the Martial Arts Spirit.

Sensei Cody Chilson (Active)

A veteran to the arts at 32, Sensei Cody’s hunger for knowledge and eagerness to except challenge is refreshing. He has made his mark as a valued instructor of Martial Arts University and now teaches FCS Kali Club and Kung-Fu classes.

Sensei Sarah Basco (Active)

Sensei Sarah has been with Martial Arts University for eleven years, and has shown a total commitment to the dojo. She is somewhat of a  modernist, never the less she can also be found learning and instructing the traditional martial arts as well. Sensei Sarah also really brings the spiritual aspect of martial arts into her classes, and works extremely well with children by inspiring them.

Sensei Miguel Garced (Active)

Sensei Miguel is an Martial Arts University original, he started with Martial Arts University when he was only 9 yrs old. Miguel exceeds with his hard sport Karate-do sparring. Miguel’s old school structured classes are blended well with his kind and willing attitude. Miguel has been training with MAU for going on 25yrs

Sensei Justice (Active)

Future Soke, Sensei Justice has been training before birth, living out the essence of martial arts in the dojo and at home. Sensei Justice is key example for younger generations. His maturity level is beyond his years while teaching and conveying his love of martial arts to others.

Sensei Micaela Lopez (Active)

Sensei Micaela Lopez is a true example of what a “Black Belt” should be. Her 21 years of dedication to our Martial Art has resulted in not only a 3rd Degree Black Belt, but a fine tuned young lady with a balance of “Shin-Gi-Tai” (Moral, Technical, Physical excellence). With Micaela on board, MAU/Martial Arts University will surely last for generations to come. Micaela is like the daughter I never had

– Soke’ Jeff Santella

Sensei Daniel Campisi (Active)

Sensei Daniel is the “Natural”, with his remarkable and gifted physical abilities, it’s no wonder he leads our Parkour/Free running program. Daniel has been with the dojo since he was 8 years old. Daniel is trained in the traditional martial arts but as well as using his street defense in his law enforcement career with the Florida Highway Patrol. With his stoic manner, Sensei Daniel brings the air of seriousness that should be treated with martial arts while conveying the love of the art to his students.


Instructor Shelby Rapp (Active)

Instructor Shelby is the second to earn her Street Tactics Black Belt earning her the title of “Instructor”. Shelby’s commitment and work ethic to Martial Arts University is beyond exemplary.  She has been training and growing up with us for the past 9 years.

Sempai Westin Meier (Active)

Sempai Westin brings his Bushido and energy to every class. Westin has excelled in his 6yrs at Martial Arts University.  One of only 10 Jr Black Belts Martial Arts University has promoted in the last 30 years

Coach Jeff Gosnell Sr. (Active)

Black Belt Street Tactics Instructor & Archery Coach. Jeff is Mr. Dependable, always helpful and proactive with anything Martial Arts University is involved in. Jeff Gosnell has been with Martial Arts University for 5 years

Coach Robert Rapp (Active)

Archery Coach Bert brings a calm demeanor to his archery classes, making your archery skills grow and more zen. Coach Bert is on his 9th  year with Martial Arts University.

Coach Oscar Montilla (Active)

Coach Oscar is natural boxing coach. He will push you to your full potential and have you above “fight ready”. He is a Olympic Gold Medalist, done Golden Gloves and MAU’s Boxing coach. Oscar has been with Martial Arts University since he was 15 years old.

Coach Richard Pepper (Active)

Muay Thai Coach Richard Pepper started as a dedicated student for 5 yrs and earning his Brown belt in Muay Thai. He is certified as a Judge and Referee in multiple world recognized associations.  He is an asset to the Competition team.


Kohai Martial Santella (Active)

The son of Soke, Kohai Martial was born training! He brings a bright and uplifting vibe to every class. Martial models perseverance and maintains a positive attitude no matter what challenges he faces in martial arts training. Martial is excellent working with children and brings the love of martial arts.

Kohai Eli Breitzig (Active)

Kohai Eli has been five years strong training with Martial Arts University. Eli is a a no nonsense Jr. Instructor who trains in Karate, MMA, Muay Thai, and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Kohai Daniel Busto (Inactive)

Seven Years Training

Sempai Zack Rachel (Active)

Sempai Zack has 8 years of karate experience including Ishin Ryu and Shito Ryu.  He also studies kickboxing and MMA. Zack has been with Martial Arts University for 3 years.

Coach Brittany Patterson (Active)

With Martial Arts University 4 years

Coach John Eckerle (Active)

With Martial Arts University 6 years

Coach Albert Williams (Active)

Albert has been training with Martial Arts University for 4 years. He is heavily involved with our classes and can be found soaking up MMA knowledge at every chance. Albert is United Cage Fights Lt. Heavyweight MMA Champion.


Sensei Howard (inactive)

and his lovely wife Karen have relocated to Colorado, but still holds the “Martial Arts University” methods close to his heart. Sensei Howard brought his high integrity and even “Higher Intelligence” to our humble system.

Kohai Emmanuel Corneta (Inactive)

Kohai Manny has been with M.A.U for the last 4 years. Kohai Manny is heavily involved with our MMA, Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu program. Everyday he steps in the door he comes in with contagious enthusiasm and energy.

Sensei Mike Recca (Inactive)

Sensei Mike is the Gentle Giant, at a fighting weight of nearly 300lbs. Mike is great communicator, a dedicated student and a regular in our Full Contact Classes.