Sifu Guro Dan Donzella began his martial arts training in 1973 under the tutelage of Sifu Gary Galvin. Sifu Galvin was a student of the late Grand Master Willem Reeders. Grandmaster Reeders was of dutch/chinese dissent, born in east Java, Indonesia. At the age of 4 Willem Reeders began his training in the Chinese arts under his great uncle Leong Liu Seong. Master Reeders had the opportunity to also study under numerous Pentjak Silat masters. The list of silat teachers are Nes de Vries, Theo Schrijn, Tji Petjut, Puk Soverbier, Leo Sjel, Abu Saman and Suro Djawan. Nes de Vries is the brother of John de Vries. Both studied under Johan de Vries from the serak lineage. The system is now under Pendakar Paul de Thouars. With a Chinese Indonesian base Sifu Guro Dan Donzella expanded his knowledge in these arts over the years as well as adding the Filipino arts.
Sifu Donzella has been teaching the Martial Arts in Syracuse, New York for over 30 years. His combat course is being taught at the Syracuse Police Academy by his student St. Stephen Lynch. Sifu Donzella personally taught the Onondaga Native American Police. Injuries to both officers and arrestees dropped dramatically in both agencies.