A 17 year martial arts student, Donovan began his training under Sensei Alen at the age of 5. His journey began as a result of being bullied at school. Donovan’s concerned parents thought he should learn to defend himself. However, the result was he actually learned the self-confidence and discipline to avoid conflict.
His first few sessions were with Sensei Alen, but he soon established a bond with Sensei Holly who became his lifelong instructor and mentor. Admittedly he was reluctant to participate early on. His shy, quiet demeanor eventually gave way to a real sense of belonging. He fondly remembers “Ninja Nights” at the dojo with his new friends, one of which accidentally got a broken nose from him.
Martial arts training became a passion that he naturally passed on to others. For many years he would help out the instructors at the dojo. At 16 years old he got his 1st degree black belt and became an instructor at 19. Donovan’s transformation from shy child to confident young man has occured as a result of growing up with the guidance of his dojo family.