Nick Stefan Black belt in brazilian jiu jitsu
Nick Stefan Black belt in brazilian jiu jitsu

Professor Nick Stefan

Nick Stefan began his training of martial arts at the age of 10 with Tae Kwon Do. At the age of 15 he tried his hand in Kenpo Karate and also dabbled in Muay Thai for a few years. Nick was introduced to the Art of Gracie Jiu Jitsu at the age of 18 while studying boxing at El Camino College. Shortly thereafter, he decided to sign up and train at the Rickson Gracie Academy in Los Angeles, CA. There, he was first introduced to Royler Gracie, while watching him prepare for one of his pride fighting matches. After a few years of traveling to LA to train, Nick found the Machado Jiu-Jitsu Academy in Redondo Beach, which was right down the street from his house. The Machado brothers studied under the Gracies and came to the US with them. Nick recieved his Black Belt from Rigan Machado in … He later re-met Master Royler Gracie and decided to compete and train directly under him and the Gracie Humaita Flag. Royler promoted Nick to his 3rd Degree Black Belt, and is glad to be a part of the Gracie Humaita Family. He takes pride in representing the Gracie family and strives to be the best instructor to every student who comes to the Academy.

Nick has competed his entire career in Jiu-Jitsu, winning tournaments from white to black belt.

Some competition Milestones:

  • NoGi Mundial Champion 2009
  • Pan American Silver Medalist 2010
  • Multiple X Grapplers Quest Blackbelt Champion
  • Multiple X Grapplers Quest NoGi Champion
  • Pan American Champion 2006
  • Copa Pacifica Champion 2003
  • Arizona State Silver Medalist 2004
  • Mutliple X Best of the West Champion
  • Mutliple X Grappling Games Pans Champion
  • US Open Champion 2005
  • 2x American National Championship medalist
  • 5x American International Champion
  • Gracie Jiu Jitsu Open silver medalist

Plus many more…….

Staci Stefan | Purple Belt Rank in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
Staci Stefan | Purple Belt Rank in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Staci Stefan – Women’s/ Kids Jiu Jitsu Coach and Self Defense Instructor

Staci Stefan has trained in boxing for 10+ years. She has not only trained but fought in amateur bouts and has numerous years of sparring experience. Staci is also a 3 stripe Purple belt in Gracie Jiu Jitsu under Professor Nick Stefan. Staci started her jiu jitsu career with a nearly undefeated record in competition until injury prevented further competition experience. Now Staci focuses on learning the art that gave her so much, and transferring that back to the students. Staci is also a nutrition, health and life coach to a lot of the members of Gracie Carlsbad and San Marcos. A mentor to many of the women and kids at Gracie Jiu Jitsu Academy Carlsbad. Contact Staci at for more information on how to live a healthy life style.

David Ruiz Gracie Jiu Jitsu Carlsbad, CA
David Ruiz Gracie Jiu Jitsu Carlsbad, CA

Professor Dave Ruiz – 4th Degree Black Belt Under Rigan Machdo Jiiu Jitsu and Pioneer For Colorado Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Dave Ruiz holds the rank of 4th degree Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu under Rigan Machado. However Dave started his training at the Gracie Academy in Torrance, Ca under Royce Gracie. Dave trained with the source of Grand Master Helio Gracie. Helio visited and taught at the Academy most often as Dave got to benefit from his legendary teachings. Not just in the way jiu jitsu is applied but how its lived, breathed, and thought about on a daily basis. Dave and Nick met as they crossed the same path with the Machado Brother jiu Jitsu RCJ Machado. Dave competed through all the ranks doing very well in competition and  most importantly Dave can teach the self defense the way Grand Master Helio passed down to his sons and Grandsons. Come take one of Dave’s classes and learn jiu jitsu the way it was supposed to be taught!

Charles Gardner martial Arts instructor in Carlsbad, CA
Charles Gardner martial Arts instructor in Carlsbad, CA

Professor Charles Gardner –  Gracie Humaita Black Belt Under Nick Stefan

 Charles Gardner –   Coach Charles Gardner started his brazilian jiu jitsu training in Colorado under the tulage of Amal Easton. Charlie moved to Carlsbad, ca in 2009 and started training under Nick Stefan at Gracie Jiu Jitsu Carlsbad. Charlie then a blue belt worked hard becoming one of the most technical practitioners in the academy. Charles Works yearly with Royler Gracie and the rest of the 100’s of Gracie Humaita Black belts on self defense and the latest competition techniques. He started working teaching classes and then eventually working his way up to manager at the Gracie carlsbad location.  Charlie , now a Black belt has fought MMA, Muay Thai and In Brazilian Jiu Tournaments doing very well in competition. Nick has groomed Charlie to be the best instructor in the Academy and a student. He regularly helps out other Black belt in the Academy and from visiting academies all over San Diego and  from out of town. An all around  intense, technical jiu jitsu game. Come learn from the one of  BEST Black belt instructor in San Diego. Charlie teaches Jiiu JItsu and Muay Thai classes.


Carlsbad Kickboxing and Muay Thai coach Andy Scott
Carlsbad Kickboxing and Muay Thai coach Andy Scott

Muay Thai and Kickboxing Coach – Andy Scott

Andy Scott is now retired from fighting Muay Thai and Boxing. he has been training for over 20 years in both sports and has numerous pro fights out of Australia. Andy now has the passion to pass his knowledge on to the students. He has been teaching at Faction and Gracie Carlsbad since we opened over 6 years ago. He teaches primarily the Tuesday and Thursday Night classes at the Carlsbad Location. Andy has also taken over the youth and kids Muay Thai/Kickboxing program at Gracie Carlsbad and Faction Martial Arts. Andy has trained with his good friend John Wayne Parr and with many coaches including Mel Menor. He is great with the kids, women, and adults striking programs. He make classes fun and is very technical and patient.

John Shults Muay Thai Coach
John Shults Muay Thai Coach

Muay Thai  Coach – John Shultes

John Schultes is a former Pro Skate boarder and Muay Thai Kickboxing enthusiast!  John Teach Kids and Adults Muay Thai as well as coach the pro team! 17-1 as an Amatuer Muay Thai Kickboxer John is very fundamentally orientated, which success falls upon. He has been involved with the training of  4 former UFC fighters, multiple Strikeforce fighters,  and currently bringing up the next generation of young Mixed Martial Art fighter’s and Kickboxer’s, and has over 20 years of Muay Thai experience!

Rene Mendez is Carlsbad's boxing coach
Rene Mendez is Carlsbad's boxing coach

Boxing Coach – Rene Mendes

Rene Mendez is the Boxing Coach at Faction Martial Arts and Gracie Jiu Jitsu Carlsbad. Rene has over 15 years experience boxing under some of the top coaches in boxing today. He now passes his knowledge down to the member’s and fighter’s at the Academy. With a easy going, fun personality, Rene pushes the students to their best possible abilities and helping everyone reach their goals, from the advanced student to the beginner. Come try one of his class now or step in for a private lesson with Rene today!

Coach Billy scheibe – Muay Thai

Coach of the Stars, we call Billy. Billy has trained most of the top MMA stars and works here at Faction periodically now to help the guys out. Anyone that is up and coming out of this Academy has first priority with Billy. We have Brought up a Few UFC stars through the Faction mixed martial arts academy with coach Billy and Professor Nick Stefan.


 Professor Dwain Allen – Judo

Mr. Allen began his martial arts training in 1981 through the study of Wing Chun Kung Fu under Sifu (Master) Augustine Fong (Tucson, AZ).  Wing Chun was popularized by Yip Man and Bruce Lee, who later used Wing Chun concepts to develop his own style of martial art, called Jeet Kune Do.


After leaving Tucson and Wing Chun in 1984, Mr. Allen continued his martial arts training in 1987 under 9th Degree Black Belt, Grandmaster Chong S. Kim (Alhambra, CA), who was named “Instructor of the Year” by Black Belt Magazine in 2001. Hapkido, the Korean Art of Self Defense, possesses an enormous arsenal of striking techniques (punching & kicking), joint manipulation & locks, throwing, and weaponry from its vast library of techniques to defend against a variety of attacks. After attaining the rank of 1st Dan Black Belt in 1993, 2nd Dan in 1995, 3rd Dan in 1998, and 4th Dan in 2002, Mr. Allen was promoted to the rank of Instructor in 1998, Chief Instructor in 2002, and taught Hapkido in a variety of locations, including the Diamond Bar YMCA in Walnut, CA.


While continuing to train in Hapkido, Mr. Allen began his judo training in 1997 at the Japanese Cultural Center in West Covina, CA. After earning his Brown Belt (Sankyu) in judo at the West Covina dojo, he moved his family to the San Diego area where resumed judo training at the Japanese Cultural Center in Vista, CA (1999-2007). After several years of off- and on-again training at the Japanese Cultural Center in Vista, Mr. Allen ramped up his judo training in 2008 under 9th Degree Black Belt, Sensei Walter Dean. After a very intensive training program under Sensei Walter, Mr. Allen earned his 1st Degree Black Belt (Shodan) in Judo in 2009, approximately 12 years after starting at the West Covina dojo.  His Black Belt was awarded through the Pacific Southwest Judo Association (Yudanshakai) and his rank is recognized by the United States Judo Association (USJA) and United States Judo Federation (USJF).


In addition to the martial arts referenced above, Mr. Allen has received additional training in Muy Thai kick boxing (2 yrs.), Iaido (1 yr.) and “internal” Kung Fu (1 yr.) along the way.  Further, after formal evaluation by the National Promotion Boards of the United States Jiu Jitsu Federation (USJJF) and the United States Judo Association’s Jiu-Jitsu Program (USJA), Mr. Allen was awarded Black Belt Certificates in (Japanese) Jiu-Jitsu from both the USJA (4th Dan) and USJJF (5th Dan & Senior Examiner Certification) in 2012.


Subsequently, Sensei Dwain obtained his Coaching Certification in Judo through the USJA in December 2012. As a result of his ongoing training, teaching, and attendance at numerous judo clinics, Mr. Allen received his 2nd Degree Black Belt (Nidan) in March 2013 under Sensei Walter Dean.


Mr. Allen is a father of 3 children (Matt-22 yrs., Melissa, 20 yrs., and Cassandra, 13 yrs.) and has been employed by the pharmaceutical industry for over 27 years, currently working in the capacity of regulatory affairs.


He is continuing his efforts to build a judo program at the Gracie Humaita Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy in Carlsbad, CA and looks forward to sharing his judo knowledge and martial arts experience with others.


See you on the mat!


Professor Michael Nishimura – Adult and Kids Jiu Jitsu

Coach Spencer McCaffery – Adults Striking/Kids  Jiu Jitsu

Michael Pot – Brown Belt Coach

Manny Gomez – Brown belt Coach

Kelly English – 2nd Degree Black Belt Instructor

Chong Wang – 1st Degree Black Belt Instructor

Jen Simmons – Kids Assistant Coach

Bart Neglia – Kids Assistant Coach

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