El-Java Abdul-Qadir on leadership: Five traits to make you great

El-Java Abdul-Qadir says he was never afraid of working hard or wearing many different hats when he was growing up in The Bronx.

That’s still the case.

In Syracuse, Abdul-Qadir is director of the South Side Innovation Center, owner/operator and chief instructor of Excel Martial Arts Training Center on Nottingham Road, and adjunct professor at Syracuse University (where he has also been a boxing instructor). He’s also a coach of Team USA in martial arts, competes internationally, and holds world titles.

He is a seventh-degree black belt in Shotokan karate. Any others?

“I do other martial arts, and I hold the rank of black belt in Tae Kwon Do and Ju-jitsu and a couple of other styles. But my base style, my traditional style, is Shotokan karate. At Excel Martial Arts Training Center, we teach traditional karate. We teach Ju-jitsu. We teach sport martial arts, which includes different types of

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