Sensei Michael Herway is Urban Kempo's founder and head instructor. He originally aspired to be a history professor, but discovered the martial arts as a healthy balance between the physical and conceptual. Coming from a large family background, he was particularly drawn to the community environment of the dojo. Michael enjoys playing pick up basketball, tennis and going to the movies in his free time.
Raised overseas in Nepal and Indonesia, Soraya first moved to the sates at age 13 and immediately discovered Urban Kempo. At age 14 she became an apprentice of Sensei Mike's, and today she knows her way around the dojo like home. She received her black belt from Grandmaster Paul Taylor in September of 2016 and teaches classes five days a week at the dojo. A senior at Washington Lee High School, she enjoys hanging out at home and watching TV in her free time.
Grandmaster Taylor is a 10th degree black belt and head of the Board of Masters at Z-Ultimate Self Defense Studios. He first met Sensei Mike in China in 2008 and awarded him his black belt in 2009. He has served as his exclusive instructor and mentor since 2013. GMT travels from California quarterly to interact with and train the Urban Kempo students, and oversees the promotion of every Urban Kempo brown and black belt. In addition, students of Urban Kempo are invited to train at Z-Ultimate dojos across the country. So whether in Virginia, California, Colorado, Washington, Arizona, Minnesota or Utah, we are able to continue our practice in a familiar environment.
Urban Kempo is the only Kempo school in the DC area that enjoys a direct lineage through a Grandmaster.