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Professional Development Committee

ATCQA Professional Development Committee is established to better serve the Tai Chi and Qigong instructors nationwide by providing peer-to-peer advices. The committee is composed of several Tai Chi and Qigong instructors who bring together diversified learning and teaching experience.  
 

Salvatore Casano

Salvatore Casano is an ATCQA-certified Tai Chi instructor (Level III).

Salvatore's Tai Chi/Qigong journey began 25 years ago while working as a chemistry instructor (secondary level). Over the years, he has the privilege of learning from many master teachers, including Sifu's William Phillips, Marc Issacs, Richard Chu, and two of the ATCQA advisors , Dr. Roger Jahnke and Bill Douglas.
While teaching chemistry and studying Tai Chi Chuan and Qigong, Salvatore passed the board tests and became a Registered Nurse (RN). It was then being involved in allopathic medicine that he felt the strong need for a more holistic approach to health care, and pursued a PhD program in Holistic Health which he completed in 2001.
Currently Salvatore is teaching 8 Tai Chi/ Qigong classes per week at a local YMCA and fitness center. Recently he also participated in a grant program from the New York State Health Foundation. In that team project that uses the Faith Community Nursing program (via Seton Health) to reach poor communities and educate them on a healthier lifestyle in order to avoid obesity and diabetes. Salvatore saw an opportunity to demonstrate some Tai Chi and Qigong exercises to help people reduce stress and help enhance their body, mind and spirit connection.
Salvatore and his wife Veronica often sojourn together on this healing path as they use their skills in helping others connect the mind, body and spirit. They have 4 adult children and 7 grandchildren. They live in Rexford, NY.
Salvatore's other affiliations include the National Qigong Association (certified Qigong Instructor and Professional Member), Qigong Institute, Tai Chi for Health Community , American Holistic Nurses Association and the Patience Tai Chi Association ( Sifu Bill Phillips).


Dixie Howell

Dixie Howell is an ATCQA-certified Tai Chi instructor (Level II).

Dixie began her Tai Chi Journey about 8 years ago with Dr. Keith Jeffery, an advisor of ATCQA. Having completed the study course and attending three symposiums, Dixie has earned Certified Teacher, Teacher Elite and the Founders award through Dr. Jeffery's "Easy Tai Chi" and "4-Minute Fitness" programs.
 Dixie also holds two teaching certifications from Dr. Paul Lam, another advisor of ATCQA.
Dixie lives in the lovely city of Brunswick, Georgia with her husband of 38 years and their very old cat. Her past and current teaching and volunteering venues include: YWCA, College of Coastal Georgia, Glynn Co. Parks and Recreation Dept., Retirement Communities, Assisted Living/Alzheimer's Residences, Churches and Clubs.
One of the Dixie's goals is to enrich her life, and those of her family, friends and students with abundant health, better mobility, greater confidence and continued independence.


Kelley Ireland

Kelley Ireland is an instructor of Dr. Roger Jahnke (an ATCQA advisor)'s Integral Qigong and Tai Chi program. She is also a Community Practice Leader of Dr. Jahnke's Tai Chi Easy program.

Kelley is a lifelong health & fitness enthusiast. As an Occupational Safety and Health Specialist at US Postal Service, Kelley has accumulated 17 years of experience in workplace injury prevention and risk management/loss prevention for 94 postal facilities. She has worked with a large, diverse workforce and train in multiple levels within the organization.
Kelley once was also a grief and loss support group owner/facilitator of "Good Grief", a non-profit organization. The organization served rural Arizona by delivering grief loss support/education to survivors of loss, and medical health care providers.
As a passionate believer in restorative healing arts of Qigong, Tai Chi and Yoga for health, fitness and vitality, Kelley now also runs her own Qi Essence, LLC., a company designed to deliver Tai Chi and Qigong to mainstream America. Her mission for Qi Essence: Inspire, promote and share the gift of the ancient self-healing practices of Tai Chi and Qigong.

Jim Matthewson

Jim Matthewson is an ATCQA-certified Tai Chi instructor (Level II).

Jim has been a Tai Chi practitioner since 1997, having been introduced to the art at Little Tiger Tai Chi in Allentown, PA. During his time with Little Tiger he received awards for Long Term Commitment and Dedication. He is trained in traditional Yang Style Long Form, 32 Step Sword Form and Tai Chi Fan Form. In addition, Jim has basic knowledge in Qigong and Stretching techniques.
Jim has attended seminars with Grand Master Duan (China,) Sifu Jiang Jian-ye (New York), Master William Ting (New Jersey) and Don Ethan Miller (National Tai Chi sparring Champion). He received certification to teach "TAI CHI from the Arthritis Foundation" and is currently working with Master Ping Zhao (Pennsylvania) on various modern combined forms.
Jim has been teaching Tai Chi at Third Street Alliance for Women & Children in Easton, PA since June, 2002, providing instruction to novice through advanced students in small classes. In addition he is currently teaching at Lehigh Valley Health Network.

Rick Tate

Rick Tate is an ATCQA-certified Tai Chi instructor (Level I).

Rick, a United Methodist Pastor, started to take Tai Chi class in the spring of 2006 at Tyler Junior College of Texas, where his instructor, Mr. Andy Meisenheimer, has been offering Tai Chi classes since 1999.
After learning Tai Chi for 5 semesters, with the encouragement from Andy, Rick started to teach Tai Chi in the fall of 2007 at Fairwood United Methodist Church, where he has been the pastor since 2002. Then the next year, Rick also started to hold Tai Chi class at University of Texas at Tyler. Ever since then, Rick has been teaching at both places, and adding more and more sessions because of the growing demand.
Rick's enthusiasm for Tai Chi manifested itself throughout the local community to such a degree that in 2009, the local newspaper, the Tyler Morning Telegraph, ran a full-page article about his class with photos and interviews with several of his students.
With the motto "Open hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors", Rick is pursuing further spiritual growth by working diligently as a United Methodist Pastor and certified Tai Chi teacher at the same time.                         
 
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