Sensei Antonio Ferrer started his martial arts career in 1969 at the age of fourteen in South Florida under the tutelage of Sensei Peter Straughbal. After Sensei Straughbal departed to Okinawa as a Peace Core volunteer, Mr. Ferrer trained with Robert Trias, John Pachivas and Larry Pemillio in Shito-Ryu in North Miami.
In 1973 Mr. Ferrer started his training in Nisei Goju-Ryu under Sensei Herbie Thompson where he obtained his Shodan in 1975. Mr. Ferrer taught and trained in South Florida until 1992 when he moved to Jupiter, Florida where he continued his training in Nisei Goju-Ryu with Grand Master Frank Ruiz.
Mr. Ferrer moved to Maryland in 1998 to fulfill his duties as Outside Plant Engineering Manager with AT&T for the Maryland and DC area. Mr. Ferrer now owns Warriors of Grace Karate and teaches full time the art of Okinawan Goju Ryu Karate Do in Severn, MD under the direction of Sensei Tetsuji Nakamura, Canada, and Sensei Morio Higaonna of Okinawa, Japan.
Mr. Ferrer currently holds a sixth-degree Black belt in Nisei Goju and a fourth-degree in Okinawa Goju Ryu and is an accredited instructor under IOGKF. Mr. Ferrer’s professional career includes engineering with BellSouth, Outside Plant director AT&T Local Services for Maryland and Washington DC, Outside plant director North East region for ARBROS Communications and owner of TFC Construction LLC underground utility construction and fiber optics splicing company.
In April 2007 Mr. Ferrer opened Warriors of Grace Karate in Millersville, Maryland, in the Annapolis area to teach Okinawan Goju Ryu full time. In May 2008 the school moved to its present location in Severn, Maryland.
Carol Lamb | Manager, Instructor | Shodan-Ho
Noelle McManus | Instructor | Nidan
I started karate when I was sixteen years old and started working for the dojo about a year later. I began by cleaning almost every day of the week and then started volunteering with children's class. I struggled with shyness so my beginnings involved helping by moving bags, handing out shields, and hiding in the corner! Through Sensei's mentoring, I grew in confidence and began leading small segments of class. After I graduated High School, my role at the dojo grew and I came on the teaching staff. I earned my first degree black belt in 2013; three years later I earned my second degree. My karate family has celebrated these achievements with me, as well as the other joys in my life. They have continuously supported my other passion, art through attending my art shows as well as commissioning works from me to grace dojo. They also rejoiced with me at my wedding to my husband Sam in 2017. I now am the head of the children's program at the dojo, and I strive to instill in them what karate has done for me- confidence, humility, strength, courage, kindness, persistence, along with the hunger to always improve oneself.
Laurel Faust | Instructor | San Dan
John Ballard | Instructor | Shodan
Kes Ferrer | Specialized Instructor | Shodan-Ho
Josiah Tillett | Instructor | Shodan
Jeff Newman | Assistant Instructor | 3rd Kyu
Adrian Bouyer | Assistant Instructor | 5th Kyu
Evan Crane | Assistant Instructor | Junior Black Belt
Christopher Nance | Assistant Instructor | Junior Black Belt
Nathaniel Navales | Assistant Instructor | 4th KyuBlack Belt
Gwen Hawk | Assistant Instructor | 1st Kyu Being a student at Warriors of Grace Karate has shaped my sense of identity, purpose, value, and most of all, confidence. Being a sempai has solidified all these things even more for me, because helping to teach is such an important part of learning. Watching the kids pick up new skills so efficiently and effectively shows that passing karate and character training on to the next generation is vital. I am currently on the road to become a children's speech pathologist, and in the meantime, I spend as much time with learning from kids as I can.
Andrew Hawk | Assistant Instructor | Junior Black Belt I am fifteen years old and have been a student at Warriors of Grace since 2013. My name is Andrew Hawk and I have grown not only in strength, but in work ethic, confidence, and respect at Warriors of Grace Karate. I started assisting in classes in 2015 and have a passion for helping others strive for excellence through karate. Outside of karate I like reading, computer programming, listening to music, and playing bass guitar