Sensei Dan Popp

In 1990, Dan began his study of Kendo (traditional Japanese swordsmanship) under Duk Yeong Kim, progressing to the rank of Yon-dan (4th degree black belt). Shortly after, Mr. Kim also provided Dan instruction in the art of Shodo or Japanese calligraphy. Although Mr. Kim passed away in 2007, Dan continues to practice Shodo to honor his teacher. Mr. Kim learned this art form in Korea from Shin Tae Sik, also known as Tei Seki.

Sensei Dan Popp

Sensei Dan Popp

Dan began the study of Isshin Ryu Karate in 1982. Currently holding the rank of Roku-dan (6th degree black belt), Dan was named the 2008 Male Instructor of the Year by the International Isshinryu Hall of Fame. Recently, Dan was inducted into the Isshinryu Hall of Fame in July 2013, becoming the 101st member of the Hall. He has also served on the Board of Directors for the Order of Isshin Ryu, founded by Toby Cooling in 1971. Dan’s training in martial arts also includes Modern Arnis and Kombatan under the direction of Grandmaster Rick Manglinong, stick fighting arts originating in the Philippines, where he was awarded the rank of Lakan Isa (1st degree black belt) in October 2012.

Dan has also promoted two tournaments for the World Kumdo Association (Korean Kendo) in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The 1st World Kumdo Association tournament held in 1998 and the 2nd U.S. Open Kumdo Championships held in 2001 where he received the Kumdo Ambassador Award.

He is the author of Sensei’s Final Lessons – A Memoir, published in March 2012 by Outskirts Press, and The Floating Brush, Learning Japanese Calligraphy from a Kendo Master, published in July, 2014 by Kamel Press.

A 1994 graduate of The Pennsylvania State University with a B.S. in Professional Accountancy, Dan was employed in 1999 by the National Credit Union Administration where he still serves as a federal examiner specializing in IT audits. He holds several IT audit certifications including CISA, CRISC, and CBRM. He resides in Harrisburg, PA with his two daughters, Britteni and Kayla.

Dan has twice held exhibitions at Mulberry Art Studios during Lancaster’s First Friday; in September 2009 and July 2010. The July 2010 exhibition titled “Shodo – The Floating Brush” received a good deal of publicity. The exhibit was listed in Central PA magazine and Lancaster magazine. His latest exhibit was held in Harrisburg, PA at Gallery at Second in September 2012. Dan’s Shodo can be found at the New Beginnings Gallery – The Shops at Hager, which is located in Lancaster’s Central Market District.

Commissioned works are also available upon request through his website – Seizan Shodo.