Gwen “Hobbes” Ryan is a great tribute to humanity and the Karate Institute of America. Coming to the KIA as a black belt from another system, Hobbes started at the white belt level and worked her way up the ranks to become a Kiado-Ryu Black Belt.
Hobbes is a true role model and inspiration. First, she is the only female in Kiado-Ryu history to become a Second Dan, a remarkable achievement. Had it not been for some medical challenges, Gwen would, not doubt, have continued her studies further into the Black Belt ranks.
Hobbes has courage. Approximately 5-foot-2-inches tall, she never shied away from fighting anyone. While sparring one night with a 6-foot-7 A-type male, Hobbes got kicked and dislocated one of her fingers. She stopped fighting, showed Mr. King her finger, and with not so much as a whimper or a tear, had the finger reset by a doctor on the premises. Ironically, it was the gentleman she was fighting.
Gwen Ryan also has humility and grace. She never boasts and is the first one to offer encouragement to others. Although she doesn’t study regularly anymore, she is always present at each Black Belt testing. She is a valuable asset to the Kiado-Ryu and we are eternally grateful to have her in our ranks.