Steve Kanney is the chief instructor of the Aikido Westchester Dojo. He began martial arts training in 1972, and Aikido in 1978. While starting with Nelson Andujar, he first met Morihiro Saito Sensei at a 10 day seminar in the United States in 1979. While he was not able to move to Japan as a formal student of Saito Sensei, he did continue to follow his seminars in the U. S. and practice on his own in addition to his regular Aikido training. He moved to New York in 1983 and first met Seiichi Sugano in 1989. His practice gravitated towards Sugano Sensei's approach over time, while he continued to accumulate experience with Morihiro Saito Sensei. With the passing of Sugano Sensei in 2010, he was encouraged to reconnect with the lineage of Morihiro Saito.
The principles of Aikido can be learned through Aikido training itself, or through other forms of knowledge. Steve Kanney has trained in wrestling (5 years), Karate (4 years), Jujitsu informally (4 years) and studied Tai Chi since 1999. He also began the study of Chinese Zen with one of the more advanced teachers in the world from 1996 until his teacher left the country due to health in 2006. Zen and martial arts training maintain a long history of close association: “Zen discipline is simple, direct, self-reliant, self-denying…A good fighter is generally an ascetic or stoic, which means he has an iron will. This, when needed, Zen can supply.” - DT Suzuki Zen and Japanese Culture (pg 62)
He also spent over 20 years as a financial professional and currently works to help individuals learn how to manage their finances in a manner consistent with the principles of Aikido.
Nathalis G. Wamba started martial arts training at the age of six. He practiced Judo for over 15 years and switched to Aikido. He joined the New York Aikikai in 1982 where he trained under the tutelage of Yoshimitsu Yamada Sensei and Seiichi Sugano Sensei. Over these years, he participated in multiple Aikido seminars in the US and abroad, focusing on instruction from Sugano Sensei and Tamura Sensei. His concentration on the training methods of Tamura and Sugano Sensei offers another perspective. Additionally, his training with Tamura Sensei, the senior most practitioner of Aikido in the western hemisphere, is particularly beneficial. Along with Aikido, he has practiced Kendo and Kyudo.
Gregory Temkin (Currently living in Florida) started martial arts in Russia at the age of 16 and trained for 7 years in Sambo and Combat Sambo. He joined Scarsdale Aikido in 2005 and since then has been learning the art at this dojo. He attended many seminars by Aikido masters such as Sensei's Sugano, Shiohira, Ikeda, Imaizumi, Saotome and Chiba. More recently he has focused on Takemusu Aikido attending seminars with Wolfgang Baumgartner and Hoa Newens Sensei. Currently, Gregory holds the rank of Shodan.
Prior to moving to the USA, Gregory was actively involved in peace and ecological movements in Russia. In the Perestroika years he organized many major American-Russian grassroots events, such as several peace walks in Russia and USA, a transatlantic sail “We Are All in the Same Boat”, ecological expeditions in the Polar regions etc. Gregory has extensively traveled the world, wrote several science fiction novels, many short stories, and many ethnographic articles. He is currently writing another novel, supposedly a political thriller. Gregory is an entrepreneur and lives with his family in Hastings-on-Hudson, New York.
Dmitry Dinces has been studying Aikido on and off for over 15 yrs. He has began studying Aikido in the 1990's with Juba Nour Sensei, an Uchi-deshi of K. Chiba Sensei, at the Aikido of Manhattan school. Since 2007, Dmitry has been studying Aikido with Steve Kanney Sensei at the Scarsdale Aikido. During years of training, Dmitry has also attended many seminars with practitioners such as K. Chiba, H. Shiohira, Bill Witt, and others.
He has been working hedging risks for over 20yrs in a derivatives subsidiary of an insurance company. He lives with his family in Edgemont.
Ric Rivera has been training in Aikido with Steve Kanney Sensei since 2005. He began Aikido to help him to find peace in the midst of conflict and violence. He has taught the children’s program for the Mount Vernon satellite dojo for several years. Ric has been an MTA police officer for 22 years. He has served his country in the military reserve since 1997, including the U.S. Navy Reserve (Operation Noble Eagle/Iraqi Freedom), the Fleet Marine Force, Dignitary Protection for Chaplains, the 4th Marine Division 6th Communication Battalion, protection for the Navy Force Surgical Group, and Crew Chief Naval Boat Police in San Diego, California. Ric is currently in the U.S. Air Force Reserve, McGuire Air Force Base as an Air Transportation Specialist. He has a comprehensive knowledge of security, having served on security details for former First Lady Clinton, President Obama’s Inaugural address, and other government officials in New York State. Along with Aikido, Ric has trained in Jeet Kun Do for six years, and Shotokan Karate for two years. He has attended seminars with the following Sensei's: Sugano, Hatayama, Shiohira, Saotome, Newens, Sato, Chiba, Utada, Goldsmith. In his spare time, he can be found scuba diving. Ric holds the rank of Shodan and lives with his family in Yonkers.
Kim Gold began her study of Aikido as an outgrowth of her Zen mediation practice. She has been assisting in the children’s program since early 2006. She was instrumental in creating the Special Needs program, as well as the Early Childhood program. Having a long-time interest in martial arts, Kim likes to cross-train in other disciplines alongside Aikido. Her past training includes Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Shaolin Kung Fu. Kim has been interested in mind-body practices for several decades. She is teaching yoga, as well as trained in various methods of meditation. She holds the rank of Shodan. She has taken seminar classes with M. Saotome, H. Shiohira, S. Sugano, M. Larson and H. Newens. Kim lives in Scarsdale with her two daughters. She has an MS Marriage and Family Therapy.