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Jim Ernest

Mr. Ernest is the chief instructor at RaJim5mtown Karate. He began boxing training as young man under his father, who was a U.S. Marine boxer. Mr. Ernest wrestled on his high school teams in California and New Jersey. He was on the football starting line up and winning varsity 191-pound wrestler in a small college in Pennsylvania. In 1973, Mr. Ernest began training in Shotokan Karate under Mr. Kazumi Tabata in Boston. A year later, Mr. Ernest moved to Connecticut, training under Mr. Harry Hamzy and Mr. Joe Rossi, earning his black belt in Ketsuka, a karate and jujutsu mixed martial arts style, in 1977. He was an active East Coast tournament competitor, bouncer, and bodyguard to celebrities (Ian Anderson, Jerry Garcia). Mr. Ernest married Kathy and moved to Dixon California. He and his wife began teaching martial arts at the University of California, Davis. His friend and training partner Dennis Alexio became the World Heavyweight Kickboxing champion. Pursuing a career as peace officer, supervisor and trainer in California’s maximum-security prisons, Mr. Ernest served the State of California for 20 years. After years of training, Mr. Ernest was awarded a Fifth Degree belt under the Ketsuka system in 1993. Mr. Ernest met Okinawan karate master Koei Nohara in the early 90’s. Mr. Ernest was deeply impressed with the knowledge, technique, and spirit contained in the original Shorinryu karate of Okinawa, and the effectiveness of Mr. Nohara’s international full-contact fighting team. Mr. Ernest joined Mr. Nohara’s Ryukyukan Okinawan Karate Organization, traveling to Japan and studying internationally under Ryukyukan. Mr. Ernest is currently ranked as Nanadan (7th degree), Kyoshi, and Ryukyukan International Vice President. Mr. Ernest is an avid martial arts researcher, with a full library of martial arts books and videos collected from all over the world. He is is also a certified Acupressurist. He is a Ryukyukan Full Contact Karate referee and judge, and a certified referee (Ref. B/B) by USA Karate and the World Karate Federation (WKF), and ranked A/A by the Karate Referee Association (KRA). Mr. Ernest uses his knowledge and experience as a competitor, coach, trainer and instructor to produce top competitors in Karate Kumite, Karate Kata, Full Contact Karate, Kickboxing, and MMA events.

Kathy Ernest


Sensei Kathy began her martial arts training in 1976, under her soon to be husband, Jim Ernest. From the beginning, she was a stand out karate competitor, winning more than her share of first places in East Coast competitions, and recognized as one of the very top East Coast fighters. She has competed nationally, and in Japan. Mrs. Ernest is also an accomplished business professional, retiring from a Silicone Valley firm in 2001. She is the president of Ramtown Karate, Inc., and childrens' programs training manager. She is passionate about the martial arts, and passionate about her students. Her dedication and deep caring for the Ramtown Karate membership as a whole is a big reason for the close family feeling Ramtown members enjoy today.

Ben Ernest

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Sensei Ben began his martial arts training at 5 years old, inspired by his dad Sensei Jim Ernest, and world champion kick boxer Dennis Alexio, who practiced in the garage at his home.
Sensei Ben trained in karate, jujutsu, savate, aikido, and judo under his father, kajukenbo under Alan Reyes, and practiced with kick boxer Eugene Ray. In Junior High, and in high school he trained and competed as an Olympic Style Weight Lifter. In High School, he was an active karate tournament competitor in Northern California as well as a linebacker on his championship football team in 1999. 
He is now a schoolteacher in Dixon. He has been a team member on the IFL Lions, and Ken Shamrock’s Lions Den pro team, and pro training partner to Buddy Roberts and Vernon White.
Ben is always looking for good fighting and workout partners. His contact fighting team is growing in numbers and increasing in skill. His Saturday class is becoming a well known in the area. It is attracting professional athletes, driven karate students, MMA hopefuls, and police officers. He is always willing to wrestle or fight on Saturdays; anyone can come to the gym to work out, and try a Ramtown MMA class. Come and see him at Ramtown.

Charlie Ernest


Sensei Charlie began his martial arts training under his parents at five years old in 1991. Sensei Charlie has competed in open circuit karate, wrestling and Judo.  He is an active traditional sport karate kumite and kata competitor, competing at a national level in the USA Karate Nationals and the USA Open.  Sensei Charlie is tall and thin, but has been most successful in the full contact and knockdown karate area, often defeating fighters who appear to be stronger. He has competed in full contact karate events in Europe, Japan, and the United States. Charlie Sensei uses form and strategy to succed in the ring, two attributes which make him a sought after teacher and coach at Ramtown Karate.

Nicole Ernest


Sensei Nicole has trained at Ramtown Karate since she was 7 years old. She grew up with her room full of karate tournament trophies and medals. Having trained and competed in Japan and Europe, she is equally talented at historical karate forms, point tournament fighting, and full contact karate fighting. She performs Okinawan weapons kata with grace and skill. She has spent many hours with the Ramtown MMA team, respected as an amazing stand up fighter who can also hold her own on the ground. Sensei Nicole competed in the USA Karate Nationals in 2010, placing 2nd in the nation in Okinawan Karate Kata, and was picked as an alternate fighter for the USA Pan American Games Karate Team after loosing to the first place woman in the last 10 seconds of an overtime round.  Because of her charismatic style, she is in high demand as a teacher at Ramtown Karate, popular with children and adults alike.

Susan Flynn


Sensei Susan began her training at Ramtown Karate in 1999. Her favorite parts of the martial arts are Okinawan kata, self defense, kobudo, sports training and kinesiology.  Sensei Susan can be found teaching the adult beginner karate classes, and is a kickboxing aerobics instructor for Solano Community College.  Sensei Susan is also a primary organizer of the November Ryukyukan International Karate Tournament.

Linda Talken


Sensei Linda has been training a Ramtown Karate since 1999. Her interests lie in traditional karatedo, including kata and kobudo (ancient weapons). She enjoys and practices practical self defense, and is a go-to teacher for self defense instruction.  Sensei Linda is also an active sport karate judge, and can be found judging at USA Karate  Karate tournaments in Northern California.


Joseph Bock


Sensei Joe is an everpresent teacher at Ramtown Karate, a dedicated student for nearly 30 years. He spends several months out of each year in Okinawa, and brings back insights of Okinawan culture to the Ramtown students.  Sensei Joe displays the healthy benifits of Okinawan karate in his daily routine: Consistant training, healthy diet, and a positive spirit.

Autumn Ernest


Sensei Autumn began her training at Ramtown Karate in the kickboxing-aerobics program.  She had never thought of karate as something she would do.  However, she was persuaded to try a class and became hooked.  She trained hard and took interest in competing in fighting where she won mulitple titles here in Northern California.  She trained through college at CSU Sacramento and her graduate program at UC Davis.  She now has her Multiple Subject teaching credential, Special Education teaching credential, and a minor in Motor Skills Development.

Kaeli Tully

Kaeli Tully

KaeilBioPhotoKaeli joined Ramtown Karate as a Little Dragon when she was in the first grade. She received her 2nd degree Black Belt (Nidan) in November 2014. Kaeli is an experienced competetor, having fought and medaled at advanced level international competitons including the USA Karate Nationals. She is has a string of medals and trophies from her Knockdown Karate competitons including the California and London Ryukyukan tournaments. She holds a Batchelor of Science Degree in Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior from University of California at Davis.

Kaeli studies meditation, yoga, acupressure, and Chinese Medicine to expand her knowledge and skills as a martial artist and instructor.  Kaeli stresses communication skills, a positive attitude, a strong body, and the knowledge and abliity to flee when needed in her children's classes. Her adult workouts are popular because of the carfully planned and researched movement, always mixed with challenge and fun. Kaeli is a great example of the positive growth in the life of a martial artist. Her message is:  "Give it a try, you will never know what it is like until you set foot on the dojo floor!"




InstructorRoll2Jim Ernest  -  Nanadan (7th Dan Kyoshi), International Ryukyukan VP

Kathy Ernest  - Rokudan (6th Dan Renshi), International Ryukyukan Board of Directors

Charlie Ernest - Sandan (3rd Dan)

Susan Flynn - Sandan (3rd Dan)

Linda Talken - Sandan (3rd Dan)

Nicole Umphenour-Ernest - Sandan (3rd Dan)

Fernando Valenzuela - Sandan (3rd Dan)

Ben Ernest  -  Nidan (2nd Dan)

Scott Janus  -  Nidan (2nd Dan)

Nikki Christison - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Susie Motley  -  Nidan (2nd Dan)

Bobby Niemann - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Jeff Story - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Michelle Shehan - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Mario Leon - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Karen Tonks - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Eric Dana - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Kaeli Tully - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Nikki Talken - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Kiera MacKenzie - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Robin Tully - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Curtis Winchester - Nidan (2nd Dan)

Karl Bock - Shodan (1st Dan)

Joseph Bock - Shodan (1st Dan)

Stephen Sewell - Shodan (1st Dan)

Anna Willard - Shodan (1st Dan)

Tom Zolot - Shodan (1st Dan)

Theresa Cristobal - Shodan (1st Dan)

Josh Eilers - Shodan (1st Dan)

Tim Schwab - Shodan (1st Dan)

Autumn Ernest - Shodan (1st Dan)

Pete Cristobal - Shodan (1st Dan)

Wyatt Erwin - Shodan (1st Dan)

Marie Whitney-Fawcett - Shodan (1st Dan)

Wesley Tonks - Shodan (1st Dan)

Jakob Stoner - Shodan (1st Dan)

Brandon Castillo - Shodan (1st Dan)

Bayley Stoner - Shodan (1st Dan)

Jodie Stueve - Shodan (1st Dan)

Brad Immel - Shodan (1st Dan)

Juliette Leach - Shodan (1st Dan)

Connor Millard - Shodan (1st Dan)

Logan Talken - Shodan (1st Dan)

Alexandra Shehan - Shodan (1st Dan)

Alonzo Allagono - Shodan (1st Dan)