Mike Codella was born and raised in Brooklyn New York. Out of high school, Mike soon became interested in the sweet science of boxing. He began training at the world famous Gleason's Gym where he would train and spar on a daily basis. At the age of twenty-one, Mike joined the police force, and would serve the City of New York proudly for over twenty years, achieving the rank of Detective Sergeant. While in his twenties, Mike began training in the hard fighting Hawaiian Martial Art known as Kajukenbo, under expert and accomplished martial artist Tom Bisio. After studying with Tom Bisio for several years, Tom introduced Mike to Sifu Bill Schettino. Sifu Schettino had studied Hsing I under Dr. Vince Black, and trained and lived with martial arts legend Sijo Adrian Emperado, the founder of Kajukenbo. After meeting Sifu Schettino, and realizing that both he and Mike shared many philosophies and viewpoints regarding life and fighting, Mike began to study Schettino's unique form of self-defense called Estacada.
In the mid 1990's, Mike met and soon became friends with World Champion and Fighter of the Decade winner Renzo Gracie. Never experiencing any real ground fighting, Mike quickly took to the "Gentle Art" of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Under Renzo's watching eyes, Mike totally immersed himself into the technical world of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Still an active NYPD cop at this time, and working in such prestigious and dangerous units as the DEA, Secret Service Task Force, and NYPD Detective Bureau, Mike often had the opportunity to test and prove the practicality of Renzo Gracie's Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
Through Renzo, Mike has had the opportunity to train and learn from many other great fighters and Jiu Jitsu masters. Some of the experts who Mike's had the honor of meeting /training with is: Rickson Gracie, Ricardo Almeida, Ralph and Ryan Gracie, Shawn Williams, Rodrigo Gracie, Nino Shembri, Vinicius Draculino, Matt and Nick Serra.
Mike retired from the NYPD in 2003. With Renzo's blessing, Mike began teaching in 2004 and opened his own Academy in 2006. Mike takes pride in passing on the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu knowledge he has acquired, and hopes to impart that knowledge to his friends and students.