Maui News

Kāʻanapali Golf Courses’ teaching professional Chris Armanini wins PGA’s #GameChanger award

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Royal Kāʻanapali, Hole 5. PC: Kāʻanapali Golf Courses

Kāʻanapali Golf Courses’ PGA Teaching Professional Chris Armanini has been named a 2022 PGA Jr. League #GameChanger Award winner by the PGA of America.

Armanini was recognized for his year-round junior golf programming at Kāʻanapali, while leading the largest chapter of the Aloha Section PGA Jr. League with 79 year-round students.

Chris Armanini (left) coaches his player at the 2022 Aloha Section PGA Jr. League Championship at Kapolei. PC: Kāʻanapali Golf Courses

“This award is a testament to all coaches who grow the game through deep and personal engagement,” said Armanini. “I have received great satisfaction coaching these young men and women to their full potential, while creating life-long friendships with our players and their families.”


Since 2019, the PGA of America has recognized outstanding PGA Jr. League coaches who create opportunities for kids to play more golf. Armanini, a former Top 50 Kids Coach by US Kids Golf, has structured Kāʻanapali’s Keiki Club with programming that covers all aspects of the “technical game.” The PGA Jr. League then facilitates the “playing side.”

In this fun best-ball format, kids wear numbered jerseys and compete on teams based on skill level and age: 13U (ages 10–13) and 17U (ages 14–17).

The 2022 PGA Jr. League season comprised of six matches on Maui at Kāʻanapali, Maui Nui and Maui Lani.


Armanini’s top players then advanced to sectionals in the All-Star Tournament on Oʻahu to compete against the best juniors from each island.

Two teammates celebrate at the 2022 Aloha Section PGA Jr. League Championship at Kapolei. PC: Kāʻanapali Golf Courses

Two teams of four players represented Maui in the 13U and 17U divisions of the All-Star Tournament. Maui’s 17U team finished in second place. Notably, Armanini’s 17U team featured two players (Landon Long and Christopher Salem) from Maui Prep’s 2022 HHSAA state championship team held at Kāʻanapali, who were coached by Armanini during the 2021 – 22 high school golf season.

“The Kāʻanapali ʻOhana is proud of Chris’ latest accomplishment,” said Karl Reul, general manager of Kāʻanapali Golf Courses. “We are honored to play a small role in cultivating an environment where Maui’s junior players receive top-notch instruction at very affordable rates.”


To learn more about the PGA Jr. League’s team approach to junior golf, visit


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