Latest News

Publish date: Sep 8, 2011

This article appeared in the Summer 2011 issue of Champion magazine.

By Greg Johnson

Hawaii Associate Athletics Director Marilyn Moniz-Kaho’ohanohano was a freshman when Hawaii began sponsoring women’s sports in 1972.

After becoming the school’s first female four-year letter winner after competing in volleyball, Moniz-Kaho’ohanohano (pronounced Ka-ho-o-hano-hano) earned a law degree from Hawaii. She later returned to the athletics department in 1989.

Besides her service to the Hawaii athletics department, Moniz-Kaho’ohanohano has served the membership through NCAA committee work. She is currently a member of the Division I Championships/Sports Management Cabinet and the NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics.

It has added up to more than a million miles of travel, but her love for intercollegiate athletics helps her overcome the obstacles.

Moniz-Kaho’ohanohano recently discussed her career.

Question: What’s a typical trip like when you travel to the Eastern time zone for committee meetings?

Answer: The Championships/Sports Management Cabinet meetings are usually on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. I pattern myself for that. I start my journey Sunday night so I get to Indianapolis Monday afternoon, and I usually leave on Thursday morning. It adds two travel days that most of the other committee members don’t have. You have no idea how many movies and work projects I’ve done on airplanes. It is a five-hour flight to the West Coast and another four to five hours to Chicago and then to Indianapolis. Sometimes I go Denver to Indianapolis. If I get to stay on one plane for the whole trip, I’m delirious. If I have to change planes twice, that’s pretty good. But if I have to change three times, then it’s a long day.

Q: How many miles have you traveled through the years?

A: I’m a million-mile flier on United Airlines already. It took me 20 years to get there. I’ve learned how to sleep on airplanes. When you travel east, it is much harder because you want to stay up later and later. There is a six-hour time difference from Hawaii to Eastern time, so you have to train yourself to go to bed and get some sleep.

Q: Does the Hawaii athletics department have special travel policies for your teams?

A: We try to stay in the Pacific and Mountain time zones. We have to go to the Central time zone when we play Louisiana Tech, because they are in the Western Athletic Conference. But it is rare for us to go farther than that. We have a policy that our teams can leave 48 hours before competition in the Pacific time zone, and you can add 12 more hours to each time zone from there. Eating the right food and hydrating is very important for our student-athletes. We also try to take advantage of technology so our student-athletes can stay in contact with their professors.

Q: The 2011-12 academic year marks the 40th anniversary of women’s athletics at Hawaii. How special is it for you to experience this milestone?

A: It is really exciting for me because I’ve seen our program grow over that 40-year span. We had two teams when I was a freshman in 1972. We’ve grown so much to what we have today. We’re the pride of Hawaii. There are so many more opportunities for women to participate. We have 12 women’s sports today and more than 200 women student-athletes. To see where we are 40 years later is wonderful indeed.