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About Wado Canada

The Wado Karate Association of Canada is a federally-incorporated non-profit society established in 1996 to teach Wado karate and physical well-being and fitness, and to promote the growth of Wado karate.

It was formed in response to the demand for an authentic national organization in Canada to preserve for future generations the heritage of Wado karate as founded in Japan in 1934 by Grand Master Hironori Otsuka. Wado Canada honours the memory and legacy of the late Master Masaru Shintani.

Wado Canada oversees the teaching of traditional Wado karate according to the curriculum established by its technical committee, headed by technical director Saiko Shihan Greg Reid, 8th Dan.

Wado Canada was also tasked by the Top Master Masaru Shintani to work towards the advancement of karate together with other karate groups throughout the world. Top Master Shintani was appointed supreme instructor and head of Wado karate in North America in 1968 by Grand Master Otsuka. In 1996, Saiko Shihan Greg Reid was named by Top Master Shintani as his successor and supreme instructor in Wado Karate-do worldwide.

Wado Canada provides Kyu and Dan standards to all member dojos; the grading board performs Dan gradings and the technical director signs all Dan certificates at the time of issue.

The executive, consisting of the president, vice-president and directors, is elected at the annual general meeting for two-year terms. Committees carry out the major activities of the association.

Wado Canada is not currently affiliated with any other Wado style organization but works in harmony with all Karate styles and organizations.

In keeping with our core values of respect, loyalty, and integrity, we affirm that karate is for everyone. Wado Canada operates schools from coast to coast to coast, embracing diversity and inclusion. We are committed to creating a welcoming and inclusive environment where all who wish to train with us can do so comfortably and confidently. Please see our Diversity and Inclusion statement on our Homepage.

 

New members are always welcome.

To view our association Bylaws and AGM minutes, click here.

MISSION STATEMENT:
The Wado Karate Association of Canada is a national, non-profit organization dedicated
to the advancement of Wado karate as developed by Hironori Otsuka and taught by the late
Masaru Shintani and Gregory Reid.
We provide technical direction and standards for our member clubs and provide
expertise through teaching and seminars. We maintain harmonious relations with
other karate organizations for the benefit of all karate-do.


VISION STATEMENT:
To increase the level of technical knowledge throughout the organization’s membership
by fostering a strong technical environment for our member clubs.
This will create opportunities for our organization to expand nationally and
internationally.


VALUE STATEMENT:
We believe that Wado karate is an enjoyable life-long activity for all. It is both a martial
art and a sport. It develops character, mental and physical wellness and provides an
excellent recreational opportunity.
These serve as guidelines for our conduct and behaviour as we work towards our
vision.

  • Integrity

  • Loyalty

  • Harmony

  • Responsibility

  • Perseverance

  • Accountability

  • Respect


We work towards the advancement of Wado karate for the betterment of our members
and the communities in which we live.

Our Mission

Our Board

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Sensei Jen Lang,

President

Hi, I’m Jen Lang, 3rd Dan. After growing up disliking physical education in school, I finally found Wado Karate while studying at the University of Victoria in the 90s. I was hooked after two weeks and I’ve never looked back. Karate has been a cornerstone of my life path in music and performance, healing arts, coaching and teaching. Karate has enriched my life in innumerable ways. When I’m not at the Dojo, I can be found seeing clients for coaching and/or sound healing sessions, learning about herbs and plant medicine, meditating or walking my dogs.

 

As the Chair of Wado Canada, I envision being a leader in an organization that continues to build strong, meaningful, and supportive relationships with Karate organizations and schools from coast to coast to coast. 

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Sensei Garrett Chase,

Vice-President, Secretary

Garrett began training as a child in Victoria under Shihan Greg Reid's instruction and earned his Shodan in 2003. As a teen, he became one of the youngest provincially certified referees, officiating at many local tournaments including Provincial Championships and BC Winter Games.

In 2011, he moved to the Cayman Islands to support Shihan Greg's school there. In 2014, he established CASK Halifax. Garrett served on the Board for Karate NS and became a national referee for Karate Canada, officiating provincially in NS and at several National Championships.

Now a Sensei and Godan, he trains and teaches at the Wado Canada HQ while continuing to support multiple schools globally.

Garrett's vision for Wado Canada is to preserve the traditions, techniques, and philosophy of Shintani Wado Karate-do, while remaining open to innovation and change. He is committed to positioning the organization for longevity and success, working harmoniously with and supporting all members.

Secretary

This role is currently held by Sensei Garrett Chase who is filling a dual role of Vice President-Secretary. See above for his bio.

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Shihan Greg Reid,

Technical Director

Click here to view Saiko Shihan Greg Reid's biography.

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Sensei Gerry Woloshyn, Director-at-Large

My karate journey began in 1985 when my child started training at a local community center. Meeting Sensei Greg Reid ignited my passion for the sport, and I've been dedicated ever since. I moved beyond being a member to become a founding director of the Wado-Kai Karate Association of Canada, serving as secretary since its inception. Since 2001, I've held the joint position of vice-president/secretary. As a father of four and grandfather of seven, I've long believed in the importance of nurturing youth and have actively contributed to our youth programs since 1987.

Officiating became another passion, thanks to Karate BC, and I've gained experience under experts like Shihan Julius Thiry. I've even had the privilege of traveling to Japan for officiating seminars at the Tokyo Budo-Kan and officiating at the Japan Nationals and Worlds Wado tournaments in 1994. As age catches up, my training has scaled back, but my connection to Wado remains strong.

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Sensei Darren Gauthier,

Director-at-Large

Hello, I’m Darren Gauthier, 6th Dan. In 1986, I discovered karate through a CASK club at my high school and liked it so much I decided to join the main CASK school.

Since that time, I have been both a student and an instructor and enjoy the physical workouts, mental discipline and tradition of our Wado style.

In 2013 I was able to participate in the creation of our club’s Kata DVD and still refer to it as a reference source. Over the years I have taught many of our junior students.

When not training, I enjoy working on my model railway layout, drawing, painting and building model aircraft. I also play ball hockey and love to go backcountry fishing or hop on my motorcycle to explore Vancouver Island.

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Nidan Michaela Salah,

Director-at-Large

My name is Michaela Salah, I am the lead instructor at CASK Karate Halifax and have been training for seven years. I started Karate while studying at Saint Mary's University, as an opportunity to try something new and get active. I am grateful to have found a community in Karate and to be able to pass my knowledge on to others through teaching. When I'm not training, I work at a nonprofit called Palette Skills where I am a Partnership Manager for Atlantic Canada.

 

To this role, I bring several years of board and nonprofit experience, specifically in operations and program design. I hold a graduate certificate in Nonprofit Leadership and also sit on the boards of Peaceful Schools International and Karate Nova Scotia.

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Sensei Shauna Cooney, Director-at-Large

After moving to Grande Cache for work, a friend convinced me to try out the local Wado Karate School with her.  I was always curious about martial arts but was always too shy to try it until that friend gave me the push I needed.  I loved it!  That was in 2003 and I haven’t looked back!  It gave me a boost of confidence to come out of my shell and has given me a solid foundation in all aspects of life.  I strive to be a positive role model and mentor for all students, but particularly for young women and girls that may need that encouragement.  When I’m not working or training, you can usually find me outdoors spending time with my family.

 

As a Director at Large, I hope to keep some of the satellite Karate schools better connected to Wado Canada Headquarters to keep our organization strong and build solid Karate relationships.  Karate really is a way of life!

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Sensei Erich Eichhorn, Treasurer

Sensei Erich began training Wado in 1983 with Saiko Shihan Greg Reid and Sensei Robert Reid, and on many occasions with the late Saiko Shihan Masaru Shintani.

Training and competing in traditional Wado across Canada and abroad, he was part of the Canadian team that took part in the 1994 World JKF Wado-Kai Championships in Tokyo, Japan.

He is still training with Shihan Reid as his senior student.

Sensei Erich has served as treasurer for Wado Canada since the organization's inception, and sits as chairperson of the grading committee for the organization. He is also a member of the technical board.

He is with a major Victoria automobile dealership, is married and has two children.

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Charles La Vertu,

Past President

Sensei Charles La Vertu, 7th Dan, is the founding vice-president of the Wado Karate Association of Canada and has served on the board since the association was created in January, 1996, the last 23 years as president.

A student at the CASK Karate Victoria Hombu since 1985, he is one of its senior instructors and is a member of the Wado Canada Dan grading board. He was given the title of Sensei by Top Master Masaru Shintani on Feb. 4, 1996.

 In keeping with the desire of both Master Shintani and Shihan Reid that Wado Canada members work to advance karate by working with other karate groups, Sensei Charles served on the Board of Directors of Karate BC for 12 years, the last 4 as president and for several years on the board of the Vancouver Island Karate Society. He is currently a member of the Karate Canada governance committee.

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Sensei Gary Wong,

Director-at-Large

Gary Wong, 4th Dan, Sensei, has trained in karate and other martial arts for most of his life.  Wado, under Shihan Greg, was the first discipline where he discovered the mind-body-breath connection, with glimpses of the spiritual component.

 

He took this discovery into other disciplines, such as Iyengar Yoga and attempts to bring this into his regular practice, whether in the dojo or at. home.

 

As a director of Wado Canada, I am proud to be part of a modern organization that has roots in traditional, yet is still relevant and continues to evolve to serve students of all ages and walks of life, across the country.

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Nidan David Da Silva,

Director-at-Large

Nidan David has been training Wado Karate since 2008. He recalls his first Wado class with Sensei Gary Wong, who suggested to remember this class, so you will always know how much you've progressed. David finds training Karate to be the ultimate distraction from pressures of the day. He also enjoys teaching the kids class and finds it rewarding to watch them improve and become more confident in their daily lives. - Be nice, do good things, and TRAIN HARD!!

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Sensei Steve Franck,

Director-at-Large

I’m Steve Franck from the Lumsden Karate Club in Saskatchewan. I am a retired RCMP officer since June 2023 with 45 years of service. I joined Shintani Wado Karate back in 1985 under the leadership of Sensei Roland Day and several years later, became member of the Wado Karate Association of Canada. Wado Karate has helped me over the years in my work. The first 23 years of my service, I was a front line police officer and for the remaining years, a Defensive Tactics instructor/trainer at the RCMP Academy and for the Saskatchewan RCMP. The Lumsden club is one of the 5 clubs that I started over the years and it has been in operation since 1994. I know the feeling of being far away from the other clubs, so as a director at large, I can relate and speak for those clubs.

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Sensei Masaya Koyanagi, Director-at-Large

Hi, my name is Masaya, born and raised in Japan and moved to Yellowknife when I was 27.

I started training karate for my exercise purpose and learning my own culture and has been training for 13 years.

I am working as a fire sprinkler fitter, and I travel a lot of northern part of Canada.

As a board member, I would like to support the Wado organization and support our students to see the world with Karate.

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Sensei Jim Lebrun,

Director-at-Large

Karate has always been a family affair. At the age of 5, Sensei Jim started training under the guidance of
his late parents Willie (Hachidan) and June (Shichidan). He continues to train alongside his brother
Sensei Bill (Shichidan). Over the years, he has had every member of his family involved in karate – his
wife Jodi (green) and 4 children (Jessica – shodan, Ryan -yellow, Ethan and Emily
– green). Away from
the dojo, he enjoys playing hockey, golfing and hanging out with his grandkids. He works as a Sun Life
advisor helping his clients with their insurance and investment needs.
As a member of the board, he is looking forward to sharing his passion for karate with his community a
nd passing along the learnings from his interactions with Hanshi Shintani.

Committees

Technical Committee

Saiko Shihan Greg Reid

Sensei Bob Reid

Sensei James Crooks

Sensei Erich Eichhorn

Sensei Wayne Duguay

Sensei Darren Gauthier

Sensei Gary Wong

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