Instructors

Instructors

Carlos Melo
2nd Degree Black Belt/Instructor/Co-founder GilroyBJJ
Carlos started training Jiu Jitsu in 2002 at 25 years old, under Claudio Franca. He was promoted to the rank of black belt in 2009 by Claudio Franca. He has been Gilroy BJJs head instructor since 2010, when he opened the school along with John “Magoo” Villarruel. Before opening Gilroy BJJ, he was an instructor for Claudio Franca San Jose. Carlos is also a veteran of a local police department and teaches self defense to police officers. As a competitor Carlos has won many national and international titles over the years. Most notably: 3x IBJJF World Champion, which include an adult brown belt title (2009) and 2 masters 2 black belt titles (2013, 2017) * it should be noted that in 2013 the Master 2 division was called Senior 1. 3x IBJJF US National Black belt champion (2013 weight and absolute master 2 and 2012 in weight, master 1) 2012 US National silver medalist in the master 1 black belt absolute division. 2012 American cup black belt adult champion 2011 IBJJF Las Vegas open Master 1 black belt champion at weight and 2nd in the absolute. 2010 IBJJF Las Vegas open black belt adult bronze medalist. 2009 IBJJF Pan Champion at brown belt adult 2008 IBJJF Pan silver medalist at brown belt adult. 2008 IBJJF World absolute bronze medalists at adult brown belt 2007 IBJJF World silver medalist at adult purple belt. 13x US Open champion, which include two titles in the black belt adult division and two titles in black belt masters 1 division. I was on the podium other times as well. Champion of several other smaller local competitions throughout the years. Winner of two amateur (2-0 unofficial record) MMA matches.
Jose Leon
Black Belt/Instructor
Jose Leon was promoted to the rank of black belt by Carlos Melo and John Villarruel in December of 2017. Some of his most notable titles include: 2015 Purple Belt World Champion. 2017 Brown Belt Pan American Champion. 2x US Open Champion Purple & Brown Belt.
Morgan Chappell
Brown Belt/Instructor & Co-owner
2017 Pan Am Champion brown belt ultra 2017 Naga no gi advanced division Champion 2017 USPFC no gi advanced 3rd place 2017 IBJJF No gi world champion brown belt ultra 2018 San Jose Open Champion brown belt ultra 2018 San Jose Open No Gi 3rd place brown belt ultra
Karen Peters
Women's Instructor
Karen earned her Ph.D. in clinical psychology. She specializes in addiction medicine and chronic pain. She is a pioneer in developing medical communities and alternative health care delivery systems. Karen has studied martial arts since age 13. She holds a 2nd degree black belt in TaeKwonDo and a Brown Belt in KangDukWon. She began her study of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu at the age of 46 and believes BJJ is for women of all ages and stages of life. She is a strong advocate for the Masters women's BJJ community and was instrumental in establishing women's Masters competition divisions in the IBJJF. Her competition accomplishments include: 2013 - Master World Champion, Blue Belt 2014 - 2017 Master World Championship Silver medalist, Purple Belt.
Jerry Cazares
Kids Instructor
Jerry is a brown belt. He has been teaching the kid’s class for Gilroy BJJ since 2013. Jerry was born and raised in San Jose. He wrestled 4 years in high school, where he wrestled CCS and made it to the State Championships. After attending college, Jerry pursued a career in massage therapy and has been self employed for 21 years. Jerry is a very dedicated teacher, coach, and student of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
Alvaro Celaya
Kids Instructor
Second Degree Purple Belt, Kids Instructor Under Carlos Melo and John Villaruel. Alvarado started Jiu Jitsu in 2012 after graduating from SJSU with a degree in Kinesiology with an emphasis in movement science. While attending SJSU Alvaro attended Judo for 2 years, Alvaro is happy to share his knowledge of Jiu Jitsu. Titles: Jiu Jitsu by the Bay purple belt heavy silver medalist 2017, Grand Canyon Opening Blue Belt Heavy silver medalist 2016, US open Blue Belt Heavy bronze medalist 2014 All stars Blue Belt Heave Bronze medalist 2014