Deb Fuchek began her study of martial arts at the very young age of six. From
1974-1977, she practised judo, achieving a blue belt and winning an eventual
bronze medal at the Junior Olympics in Judo in Toronto in 1977. From 1977-1982,
Deb studied Isshin Ryu Karate, along with her two sisters Susan and Janet
(both are now fifth degree black belts), in Thunder Bay, Ontario, under Sensei
Donald Shapland. In 1988, Deb and her husband Tim Leonard opened their own karate
dojo (club) in Winnipeg. From 1993-1998, Deb competed in the international tournament
circuit, winning both kata (a series of movements against imaginary opponents) and
kumite (point fighting) divisions. In 1990, the Professional Karate League
rated her the second-best kumite competitor in Canada. In 1997, Deb and Tim opened their first
Isshin Ryu Karate School in Ottawa, now called the Toshikai Dojo.
Always ready to take on new challenges, Deb reinvigorated her martial arts through
boxing and attained a Level 5 with the Whitebrook Boxing Club in Ottawa. She presently
instructs a cardio-karate program at the Toshikai Dojo in Ottawa.