Maui HS Gym Renamed to Honor Shine “Izumi” Matsui
Maui High School held a special dedication ceremony on Thursday for its gym, which was renamed the Izumi “Shine” Matsui Athletic Complex, in honor of the late Matsui who served as a teacher, coach and Athletic Director for a span of nearly 30 years.
“Shine,” as he was referred to by friends, family and colleagues, joined the Maui High faculty in 1959 as a teacher and coach while the school was still located in Hamakuapoko. Under his direction, Maui High Athletics experienced growth in program and facilities, development of girls sport teams and the formation of co-educational physical education classes. He was at the helm of the Athletic Department during several milestones in the program, including the school’s relocation to the Kahului Campus in 1972, the implementation of Title IX policies in the same year, as well as the construction of the gymnasium in 1979.
Former student and colleague, Curtis Lee said, “Shine helped to implement women’s sports even before title IX and improved the sports opportunities for the female athlete. He also served as the head football coach at the old Maui High and helped his athletes get scholarships to colleges. Two examples are Rogers Ishizu and myself, both who came back to Maui High and served as teachers and football coaches. Shine has passed on but he is still remembered by many athletes and students he worked with during his long tenure at MHS.”
Another direct recipient of Matsui’s influence was 1969 graduate Stanley Uwekoolani. He stated in a note of affirmation to the Matsui family, “It gives me great happiness to know that the Maui High School Gym is being dedicated and named for the man who was my high school football coach for my sophomore through senior years. If you ask what my favorite high school memory is, I would say Coach Matsui; his sincerity, honesty, and respect he gave to each of his players. It was an honor to have known him and to have his character and caring as an strong influence in my life during those formative years.”
Matsui is already a member of Maui High’s Hall of Honor, a recognition program established in 2011 by the school and the Maui High School Foundation that annually honors individuals with ties to Maui High School who have made outstanding contributions to the legacy of the school and the school community. His induction into the school’s Hall of Honor came in 2014 under the Inspiration Award which is given to a faculty member, past or present, who has made a difference to the students of the school.
The Shine Athletic Center received new basketball court flooring this past summer. Plans for enhancements to the foyer area are currently underway as well that focus on promoting school spirit and honoring the Saber legacy.
“The naming of the gym has long been planned and we are happy to bring it to fruition at this time,” said current Athletic Director Mike Ban. “We are also grateful to be able to collaborate with our PTSA, Foundation, local businesses and supporters to move forward on other additions to the Shine Athletic Center that will foster school pride,” he said.
Principal Jamie Yap said, “this is one of many steps we as a school hope to take in creating an atmosphere that celebrates the Saber legacy, which has been a driving theme for us. We aim to create a campus culture that inspires students and faculty to make their own unique contributions to our school’s long and proud legacy, both during their time here at MHS as well as long after they’ve moved on.”