Chosin Chibana (1886-1969)
The founder of Shorin Ryu Karate was the first person to be awarded a 10th dan (Hanshi) by the Dai Nippon Butokukai (the Japanese Martial Virtue Society). Chibana Sensei began his study of karate at the age 15 under Anko Itosu and was the president of the Okinawa Shorin Ryu Karate-Do Association. He brought great honour to Okinawa when on April 29, 1968, the Emperor of Japan awarded him the 4th Order of Merit for his lifelong devotion to Karate-Do.
Katsuya Miyahira (1918-2010)
Upon Chibana's death, Miyahira became the president of the Okinawa Shorin Ryu Karate-Do Association and the 10th dan (Hanshi). Hanshi Miyahira was born in Nishihara City, Okinawa on August 16, 1918. He began training under Chibana in 1933 and also trained with Anbun Tokuda and Choki Motobu. Miyahira's maxims of gouri (reason), gouho (legal or true form), kiyoson (co-operation) and kiyoyei (fellowship, friendship) are the foundation stones of Shido-kan Karate. In September of 2000, Miyahira O'Sensei was recognized as an "intangible cultural asset" by the Okinawa Prefecture Board of Education for his life-long commitment to teaching Karate-Do. Miyahira O'Sensei continues to teach at his Shido-kan Honbu Dojo in Naha City, Okinawa. Hanshi Miyahira's most senior student is Seikichi Iha.
Hanshi Iha was born July 9, 1932, in Nishihara City, Okinawa. He began training in 1950 with Shinpan Gusukuma. After Gusukuma's death, he began training with Miyahira O'Sensei. On March 12, 1989, Miyahira O'Sensei promoted Iha Sensei 9th dan (Hanshi) and again promoted to Hanshi 10th dan by his on March 25, 2001. Hanshi Iha has been teaching at his Original Okinawa Karate dojo in Lansing, Michigan since 1975. Iha is the most senior practitioner of Senior Shorin-Ryu Karate outside of Okinawa and has been responsible for spreading Shido-kan to much of the world.
Roy M. Paul
Sensei Roy has been involved in Shorin Ryu Karate since 1987. In 1998 he was made the Canadian Director by sensei's Miyahira and Iha. On March 12th 2011, he was promoted to 6th degree black belt by Hanshi Iha. Sensei Paul trains with Hanshi Iha and brings Iha Sensei to Canada twice each year for seminars.
Sensei Fortunato has been studying karate since 1979 and studied various karate styles. He started Shido-kan karate in 2004 and was promoted to 5th degree black belt by Hanchi Iha on July 20, 2013. Fortunato is the Chief Instructor of Grand River Karate in Waterloo, Ontario. Grand River Karate became an affiliated Fuku Shibu dojo in July of 2004 under the direction of Sensei Roy Paul, Director of Shido-kan Canada.