Professor Joe L. Santiago, born in Puerto Rico, was raised in Bronx, New York. He served in the U.S. Air Force for over 3 years and was Honorably Discharged. On June 1990, he moved to the Bay Area of San Francisco and worked for United Airlines as an Avionics Electronic Technicians for 23 years. Professor Joe L. Santiago currently works as a Lead Radiologic Technologist at the San Francisco VA Medical Center.
In July 1993, Professor Joe L. Santiago began training in Shaolin Kenpo Karate under Great GrandMaster (GGM) Ralph Castro and earned his 1st Black Belt in December 2000. In 2005, he earned his 3rd degree Black Belt. Great Grandmaster Ralph Castro has a tradition of awarding a form, to his high- ranking black belts. In 2005, Great GrandMaster Ralph Castro formally awarded Professor Joe L. Santiago the form: Leaping Leopard.
In 2009, Professor Joe L. Santiago founded "Leaping Leopard Shaolin Kenpo" school.
On February 24, 2018, Professor Joe L. Santiago earned his 7th Degree Black Belt from GGM Ralph Castro.
Mrs. Cherie L. Santiago, assistant instructor, is currently a 1st Degree Black belt. She has been training since 2007 with Professor Santiago and GGM Ralph Castro.
Cherie and Professor Santiago have been married over 16 years and have 2 beautiful daughters.