Willie G. Wilson began his Isshin Ryu training in 1972 under the late Master Harold Long. Master Wilson was one of the first two African American students at Mr. Long’s dojo, and as such, he was viewed as a martial arts pioneer in the African-American community.
With Master Long’s encouragement and blessing, Master Wilson, along with four other black belts, started the Karate Five dojo, which continues to operate in the Knoxville, TN area.
In addition to his Isshin Ryu training, Master Wilson received training and black belts in Sanuces Ryu and VeeJitsu. He currently is in the process of adding Arnis to his martial arts training. With his expanded base of martial arts, Master Wilson’s advocates “Isshin Ryu first… everything else is plus…”
Through the years, Master Wilson contributed to the growth of Isshin Ryu in the Southeast through demonstrations, seminars and tournaments.