Instructors Profile

Know further about the Kali America’s greatest instructors


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Instructor / Founder

During Grandmaster Taningco’s childhood, gangs were rampant in the Philippines. So, under the tutelage of his older brother Alex R. Taningco, Grandmaster Taningco first learned his family’s Willow System Kali (Robles Family Style) system of Filipino martial arts (FMA) to protect himself in the dangerous streets of Sampaloc, Manila. In 1976, he founded the Taningco Academy of Martial Arts (TAMA) in Dayton, Ohio to provide the means to share his unique mix of martial arts training programs in a single martial arts training center. Today, he a 10th Degree Black Belt of the Willow System and is the recognized family FMA lineage holder.

After moving to the United States, Grandmaster Taningco integrated other FMA best practices from other world-renowned Grandmasters with whom he has studied. These Grandmasters read like a “who’s who” of FMA “(Filipino Martial Arts)” and include such names as Dan Inosanto (FMA/Jeet Kune Do), Leo Gaje (Pekiti Tirsia), Remy Presas (Modern Arnis), Ciriaco “Cacoy” Cañete, and Dionisio Canete (Doce Pares) and a LIFETIME MEMBER of Doce Pares acknowledge by the original Doce Pares Club in 1984. Grandmaster Taningco also is recognized as a 6th Degree Black Belt in Doce Pares Eskrido and as a first-generation Disciple of Grandmaster Leo Gaje in the Pekiti Tirsia System.

Taningco has been shot at, gun pointed at and knife at and has been challenged live at his studio numerous times. And now, he proudly share his no nonsense approach of survival along with traditional Filipino Martial Arts skills training that will help you gain an edge on the street and on competition.

In addition to his FMA prowess, Grandmaster Taningco also holds the following rankings in a diverse number of arts:

  • Master License Pekiti-Tirsia under Grandmaster Leo Gaje
  • 8th Degree in Shaolin Kenpo under Grandmaster Tim Gasper
  • 3rd Degree in Icho-Ryu Aikijutsu under Sensei Bernie Lau
  • 1st Dan Black Belt in Danzan Ryu-Jujitsu under Professor Ramon Ancho
  • 65th Generation Disciple of Tien Shan Pai Kung-fu under Grandmaster Chien Liang Huang
  • Certified Muay Thai instructor under United World Muay Thai Federation through Vut Kamnark
  • 2004 – Created, Presented and taught the ISD Program – Close Quarter Combative to US Security Forces of over 300 Security Forces personel before going to Irag.
  • 2004 – Special Guest Instructor – taught close quarter combative at Ternate, Cavite Philippines – Philippine Marine Headquarter and Special Action Forces.
  • 2005 – “Martial Arts Excellence” Awarded by US Marines in Quantico, Virginia by Colonel Schusko and Master Sargent Franklin Shane. Taught the US Marines Instructors in close quarter combative at Quantico, Virginia US Marine Headquarter.
  • Taught many law enforcements both local and national, SWAT Teams and US Marshal
  • Taught many stand-up fighters and MMA fighters that went on to become undefeated and pro fighters in the likes of Christian Toleque, Neal Rowe, Joe Schilling, Robbie Walker, Toby Grear and many others.
  • Developed Common Sense Rapid Self Defense and ISD (Integrated Self-Defense) to both KA Women’s Self-Protection, Children’s KA Anti Bullying Program and to non-military & military personnel


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Since at the age of 3, Jaden has demonstrated a promising talent in the martial arts. He started his training in earnest at the young age of 8 under his father GM Taningco and other trusted instructors at the Taningco Academy of Martial Arts (TAMA). His passion, along with his natural abilities as a quick learner, have allowed him to develop rapidly into a well-rounded martial artist.

Jaden has a sincere compassion for teaching and sharing his knowledge. He has a deep understanding of all aspects of the Willow system of Filipino Martial Arts, freely flowing from unarmed and armed techniques, with bladed or stick weapons.

A gifted and patient teacher, his upbeat personality and optimism is contagious. Jaden’s sensitivity to timing, coordination, and creativity brings out the best from people and drives his students to achieve excellence!

Full-time Instructor and Administrator at Tama Martial Arts & Kali America International Training Center.

Doug Vaughan

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Senior Instructor

Doug Vaughan served in US Air Force for many years and now work as a government contractor for US Air Force. His martial arts career took off back in mid 1970’s. An accomplished Shodan in Okinawan Shito-Ryu, he felt that there is more than meets the eye.

He attended a seminar where there was a demonstration been given at that time by GM Manuel Taningco. After seeing his demonstration, Doug realized that is “what meets the eye” to him is to seek Taningco for his knowledge. In 1981, Doug Vaughan entered the US Air Force. During that time, while stationed at the United States Air Force Academy, he was introduced to boxing and trained with the Academy Boxing Team. He also dabble in several different martial arts such as Kenpo, Tang Soo Do and Shorin-Ryu.

In 2011, he retired from USAF but was living in Saudi Arabia where he fell in love with Filipino Sikaran Arnis. And in 2014, he returned home to Ohio and sought out GM Taningco remembering his demonstration of Filipino Martial Arts in 1978. Doug is a KA senior instructor and has been studying since 2015 under GM Taningco at the Kali America international headquarter in Dayton, Ohio.

Will Dagpin

Will Dagpin

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Assistant Instructor

Will Dagpin is an Account Manager Senior for one of the largest utility company in the US. He manage a portfolio of Large Commercial &Industrial customer in eastern Ohio area. He handle all aspects of relationship with these customers including new service requests, billing issues, outage events, power quality and more.

He received a Bachelor degree in Electro Mechanical Engineering from Miami University Ohio, Associate degree in Electrical Electronic Engineering Technology from Zane State College. He is a Certified Energy Manager and Certified Energy Auditor. A Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do.

Will also served in the US Army for over 21 years. He reside in Mt. Perry Ohio with his wife Brenda, and two daughters.

Teri Clapper

Teri Clapper

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Assistant Instructor

Certified Business Advisor – Business Coaching & Consulting & Business Owner

Focus – Growth and scale strategies, profitability, and strategy planning

Bachelor’s – Advertising, Marketing & Business

Lives in Southeast Ohio – Black Belt Tae Kwon Do

Kali America Business Advisor


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