Having served his community as an instructor for the past 45 years, Sensei Jose Roses received a Medal (OAM) of the Order of Australia for his services to karate over the Queen’s Birthday weekend.
One of 22 Canberrans to be bestowed with an OAM this year, the 63-year-old Mr Roses told Canberra Weekly he felt both overwhelmed and honoured by the achievement.
“I was surprised and after doing some research there’s a lot of people who put it together without me having any idea, it was two years’ work for them.
“They needed something for me, to have some sort of recognition and they went for it.
“I’m a very humble person so it’s something that’s taken it a bit out of me,” he said.
Both a Joint Chief Instructor of Australian Okinawan Goju-ryu Karate-Do Federation and 7th Dan Karate Black Belt, Mr Roses’ resume in his chosen discipline is as lengthy as it is impressive.
“I’ve been training people for a long, long time, I’ve trained Aboriginal kids, people with conditions and it’s been an incredible journey for me,” he said.
“Training Aboriginal kids was really important, a lot of good things have come out of that.
“Travelling overseas, training and teaching in South America and USA. I’m going to Tokyo next month to teach there and those are some of the incredible highlights to experience,” he said.
Mr Roses said what motivates him is not just self-defence, but the opportunity to teach his students, namely teenagers and kids, to be better people, set goals, and achieve things in life.
“With my five kids, they all did martial arts, and I believe I achieved what I set out to when I started teaching them. They’ve all set out with dreams and are making them come true.
“Years ago I taught one family, their three kids. They’re all grown up now and doing well and when people ask them why they’re doing well they say karate,” he smiled.
“My objective now is to keep pushing and creating instructors, to keep helping the Canberra community by teaching kids and helping them grow as people.”