Meet the Instructors

Danilo Cherman

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Owner and Founder / Lead Instructor

Jessica Cherman

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Co-Owner / BJJ Instructor / Women's BJJ Coach

Mike Sabo

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BJJ Instructor

Pablo Arroyo

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BJJ Instructor


Stacey Kinney

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Women's BJJ Assistant Coach

Kenny Markwatt

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Wrestling / No-GI Instructor

Danilo Cherman

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Black Belt (4th Degree)

It has always been Danilo's dream to open up his own academy, and he finally did it! JITSU Academy was established on September 30,  2017 in Wallingford, CT!

FULL BIO

Danilo Cherman is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt under André Pederneiras of Nova União, and a pioneer for their team in the field of mixed martial arts, having fought in historic promotions such as Shooto (Japan), Fury FC (Brazil) and Cage Rage (UK). 


In the competitive sport of Jiu Jitsu, Danilo has conquered titles in many tournaments such as the CBJJO World Cup, CBJJ’s Brasileiro (Brazilian Nationals) and FJJ-Rio’s State Championships, among many others.

 Danilo has been training in MMA and brazilian jiu jitsu since the age of 14. Going through the belt system under Pederneiras’ guidance, Danilo Cherman was promoted to black belt by the famous Nova União leader in August 2003, shortly after his victory at the World Cup. He moved to the US in 2009 to pursue his dream of having his own jiu jitsu school, and has successfully created a team of loyal warriors. Danilo prides himself on his team functioning like a family, helping each other through class and through life. The family like atmosphere Danilo has created, is where people of all walks of life come together to train, learn, and grow.

Jessica Cherman

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Brown Belt

Jess assists in teaching BJJ classes, and currently runs the biggest Women's BJJ team in CT.

Titles

2x IBJJF World Master Silver Medalist

5X IBJJF NY Open Champion

2X IBJJF NY Open Absolute Champion

3X IBJJF Boston Open Champion

FULL BIO

Jessica Cherman, wife of Danilo Cherman, has been training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and MMA since 2010. She is currently a brown belt under Danilo, and has become an avid competitor throughout her Jiu Jitsu career. Jess is an IBJJF World’s silver medalist, and has won multiple IBJJF gold medals in her division and absolute divisions as well. 

Jess has successfully created the largest women’s team in Connecticut, where female jiu jitsu practitioners are provided with the opportunity to learn and train in a female friendly atmosphere, all while thriving within the sport. 

Jessica has a bachelor’s of science degree in Athletic Training and sports medicine from Southern Connecticut State University. She is also a graduate of Goodwin College's Nursing Program, and currently works as an RN in Hartford, CT. 

Mike Sabo

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Black Belt

Mike assists in teaching BJJ and drills classes, in addition to being the highest ranked student in DCBJJ. 

TITLES

IBJJF World Master Champion 

IBJJF Pan American Champion 

IBJJF European Champion

IBJJF Chicago Open Champion 

2x IBJJF Boston Open Champion  

IBJJF New York Open Champion

IBJJF BJJ Pro Champion 

FULL BIO

Michael Sabo is a black belt under Danilo and has been training jiu jitsu since 2009. Formerly a hockey player at Southern New Hampshire University, Mike developed a passion for training in the Gi and is an active competitor in the IBJJF tournaments across the country.

Mike’s most recent accomplishments include 2016 World Masters World Champion (purple belt) and 2017 Pan American Champion (brown belt), and 2018 European Champion (brown belt).

Off the mats, Mike is very passionate about nutrition and is a promoter of “The Dolce Diet” for general health and weight cutting for jiu jitsu or MMA, and was featured on their website in 2014. Mike has been teaching jiu jitsu under Danilo for 4 years and will continue to share his skills and knowledge at Jitsu Academy. 

Pablo Arroyo

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Brown Belt

Pablo assists in teaching BJJ classes and drills, as well as aiding in promotion test preparation. 

TITLES

IBJJF World Master Champion

IBJJF Pan American Champion

IBJJF European Champion

IBJJF NY Open Champion

IBJJF Boston Open Champion 

FULL BIO

Pablo began his Brazilian Jiu Jitsu journey in 2009. Since his rank at blue belt he has consistently achieved top 5 world rankings within his division. Along his path, he has competed in and won numerous championships, to include IBJJF, NAGA, Big Apple Open and local gym tournaments. Notably, Pablo is an IBJJF PANS Champion, IBJJF European Champion, IBJJF World Champion, IBJJF Toronto Open Champion, multiple time IBJJF New York Open Champion and multiple time IBJJF Boston Open Champion. Pablo is always eager to share knowledge and skill with everyone believing that we are only as good as our coaches mold us and teammates push us.   

Stacey Kinney

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Brown Belt

Stacey is an assistant coach in the women’s BJJ classes, and also helps with promotion test preparation and technique class.   

TITLES

IBJJF World Master Champion

IBJJF European Champion

IBJJF NY Open Champion

IBJJF Boston Champion 

FULL BIO

Stacey began training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in 2010 at the young age of 51. She is currently IBJJF ranked number 1 in the world within her division. She has competed in numerous championships to include IBJJF World Master Tournaments, IBJJF Boston Open, New York Open, New York Pro, Miami open and the Big Apple Open. Notably, Stacey is a two time IBJJF European Champion, and three time IBJJF World Champion. Stacey is a certified W.I.T.S. Personal Trainer and Sports Nutritionist. Stacey is a firm believer that anyone can participate in BJJ, but finding a balance with your life is key. 

Kenny Markwatt

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Brown Belt

TITLES

Coming Soon

FULL BIO

Coming Soon