- Hanshi / Dr
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- Dr. Barry Packham has a Ph.D. degree in information systems, and is a Vice-President of a large company listed on the New York Stock Exchange. He has studied karate now for 31 years, having commenced in 1965. He began by studying Shotokan karate with visiting American karate-ka Donn Draeger, and later Australian based USKA stylist Wayne Williamson. In 1970 he commenced the study of Shorin Ryu Matsumura Seito with American ex-serviceman Theodore Lange, progressing to the rank of 3rd Dan.
In 1973 he visited Okinawa with colleague Brian Pilbeam, both becoming students of Grand Master Soken Hohan and then Senior Master Kise Fusei. Packham was graded to 4th Dan and Pilbeam to 1st Dan by them. Packham returned to visit Okinawa and Indochina on a number of occasions during the 1970=92s, furthering his studies with Masters Soken and Kise, being privileged to train and dine in their homes on these visits. Following the death of Grand Master Soken, Packham continued his allegiance with the newly elevated Grand Master Kise, visiting Okinawa throughout the 1980=92s and 1990=92s, on occasion with some of his students (Rod Hilton, John Crebbin and Gary Oliver), reaching the rank of 6th Dan Kobudo and 7th Dan Karate in 1989. In 1988 Packham authored a limited edition 200 page hard cover history of Shorin Ryu in Australia.
Through these connections, Shorin Ryu Matsumura Seito, then Shorin Ryu Kenshin Kan have prospered in Australia, with 24 people reaching Black Belt levels, all of whom are still active in varying degrees today. The style in Australia operates as it always has as a non-profit club and is headquartered in the provincial city of Ballarat in the State of Victoria. The Club has its own well equipped full time Dojo, at which Wayne Reddrop, 5th Dan, is Chief Instructor, and Graham Howard, 3rd Dan is Director of the very successful and long running children’s program. The headquarters Dojo has been visited several times by Grand Master Kise, and the Club always looks forward to his next appearance. Overseas visitors are always warmly welcomed, so keep us in mind if you ever make it down under.