All of our instructors are required to keep their CPR certification up to date.

Marcos Cerqueira 

Head Instructor/Academy Director

Black Belt 3rd Degree

     Professor Marcos Cerqueira is a third degree Jiu-Jitsu black belt under Professor André “Negao” Terencio.


Marcos picked up Jiu Jitsu in adolescence (1994), he practiced sports at the “Atletica da Tijuca” academy were some friends also trained BJJ. One day he decided to take his friends challenge and give grappling a go.

There he met Master Carlos Henrique, a black belt who taught there and that would become his master for the next 14 years. Carlos Henrique followed Marcos' development close hand, awarding him his blue (1996), purple (1998) and brown (2001) belts. Marcos Cerqueira received his black belt from André Terencio, a black belt of his master Carlos Henrique in 2007 and in 2008 he moved to the US to develop his very own school in South Texas. 

“For me Jiu-Jitsu is everything. It is the foundation of my life. It’s a pleasure to be able to teach and pass forward the art that that has giving me so much and has changed my life for better." -Professor Marcos Cerqueira

Marcos Cerqueira Lineage: Mitsuyo Maeda > Carlos Gracie > Helio Gracie > Francisco Mansur > Carlos Henrique > André Terencio > Marcos Cerqueira

Derry Samuel 

Downtown Location Instructor

Youth Assistant Instructor

Black Belt 

     Derry Samuel or Coach Derry as he is more affectionately known was born in Trinidad and Tobago, West Indies. His first experience with the combat arts was with the Purple Dragon Martial Arts Academy at the age of 8 in an effort to keep him out of trouble. He spent 6 years there and was belted in the Don Jitsu Ryu martial art style. At the age of 19 and upon completion of high school he emigrated as a first generation immigrant to the United States and finally settled in Houston, Texas. 

His love of martial arts was then fed by the Mungu Karate academy where he trained in Tang Soo Do under famed and now deceased Master Chatu P Mungu. Life and circumstances changed and his training took a back seat to work and education where he pursued dual state licensure in Emergency medical technology as a Licensed Paramedic and Registered nursing. He honed his medical care skills on the ambulances of Harris County ESD 1, in rotor wing aircraft with PHI Air Medical and finally had an opportunity to serve his new country as a Medic in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Iraq. During his 3 year deployment he made contact with Professor Marcos Cerqueira of Brazil-021 Houston and his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu life and family was solidified.

Coach Derry returned from his deployment and trained consistently with his new family and progressed to assisting with instructing classes of both youth and adults. Coach Derry has been training with Professor Marcos for over 8 years and has attained the rank of Faixa Marrom (Brown belt). He can be found leading the rapidly expanding youth program on evenings from Monday to Thursday and leading the adult program at Brazil-021 Houston Downtown at the Met early mornings three times weekly. He brings significant medical knowledge, anatomical expertise and safety awareness to his practice and is known for emphasizing a calm, consistent adherence to the basics as a foundation for Jiu-Jitsu growth. Coach Derry continues to train, hone his professional Jiu-Jitsu practice, nursing and medical care provision and pursue his goals. He is married with two children who also train and resides in Houston Texas.

"Jiu-Jitsu is like a language, every time you bow, shake hands and engage you should expect to learn, teach, exchange and experiment, and come away with a new understanding of how life is Jiu-Jitsu and Jiu-Jitsu is life".  

- Derry Samuel 

Franco Valdez

Muay Thai Instructor

BJJ Purple Belt

     His passion, his love, his soul wraps around “The Science of Eight Limbs” Muay Thai martial art. Every elbow, knee, kick, and punch thrown focuses on enhancing the techniques developed for using the body as a weapon. He has studied abroad and completed the training program at the world-renowned Fairtex Gym and Tiger Muay Thai in Thailand. In the last 15 years of practicing martial arts, Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu are the two martial arts he finds the most rewarding.  His passion for martial arts started when he was a teenager, where he studied the form of karate known as Kyokushin. He then moved on to study Kuk Sool Won for six years. In, 2014 he began teaching Muay Thai and his life change forever. Muay Thai gives hime the opportunity to train, still learn and educate others with martial arts.  All of this is for his devotion; his other passion is a little brown haired cutie that he has the privilege of calling his daughter, Aubrey.  

'' I build my outer strength while she gives me my inner strength.  She gives me the courage to continue and the desire to become a better student, teacher, and father.  For her, I strive to never maintain only improve."  

-Franco Valdez

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