Carl J Miller, Go-dan
Carl Miller is a Go-dan or fifth degree blackbelt in Isshinryu Karate. He started his martial arts study in 1978 in Carbondale, IL while attending SIU. Kyokushin-kai was the first style he trained in under Sensei Dan Soller. After being one of only 5 students chosen to be promoted out of a class of 75, he knew he had found his passion. Mr. Soller moved, but introduced Mr. Miller to Sensei Michael Wodiak, who was a student of Master Nagle. Under Sensei Wodiak, Mr. Miller began his Isshinryu studies. In the next 2 years Mr. Miller received his Ikkyu grade from Sensei Wodiak. Mr. Miller graduated from SIU and moved back to Morton where there were no Isshinryu dojos to continue his training.
He then began studying Shuri-ryu. Although, he only trained one year, he quickly became Sempei (student grade instructor) of the class. His training in Shuri-ryu was cut short when he moved to the East Coast for work. During summers and while training in Shuri-ryu Mr. Miller also trained in Wado-ryu under Sensei Rex Bartlemay.
While living in VA Beach, VA he trained under Shihon Dan Montgomery and earned his second degree black-belt in 1989. Sensei Miller along with the Montgomery's taught over 150 students through the VA Beach Park District. Also, during these years he studied Judo and Ju-jitsu at various schools in the Tidewater area. Sensei Miller earned his WUKO refereeing credentials and successfully ran several tournaments. Because of the military's enormous presence in the area, Sensei Miller was introduced to many styles through the years. Although, he had many opportunities to switch and earn rank in other systems, he always considered Isshinryu the most efficient style he had studied. Sensei Miller trains with Shihan Montgomery as much as time and distance allows and still receives his promotions from him and the IWKA (Isshinryu World Karate Association).
While teaching at the Recreation Centers, Sensei Miller also taught privately to members of the Navy's elite Seal Team 6 and taught an accredited women's self defense class at Tidewater Community College.
He then moved to Chicago area where his teaching was halted due to a job that required constant travel. During this time he trained and helped teach at various Isshinryu dojos in the Chicago area.
After moving back to Morton, Sensei Miller began teaching children with the Young American organization. Although teaching kids was rewarding, he really wanted to be able to dive deeper into the training than is possible with their program. It was then that Sensei Miller opened his dojo, Miller's Isshinryu Academy, that meets in the Summit's Edge in Morton, IL. He is also teaching a self-defense class that earns PE credits at Il Central College.