“Kari has been so helpful to me and has taught me so much. She is really nice and teaches me and has boosted my confidence so much that not only did I do really well at my State competition, I know I am going to do even better at Nationals! Kari is my Pageant Angel” - Julia Gilmore, NAMISS 2017 Illinois Cover Girl
“Just as you would have a coach for sports or music or dance for your child, having a coach for pageant competitions can make the difference between doing well, and winning. Kari is knowledgeable in the industry, experienced, organized, kind, fun and super smart. My only regret is that I didn’t hire Kari sooner. She has been instrumental in my daughter’s growth, and she has become a good friend as well. She has helped my daughter in every area, including wardrobe tips, modeling, developing interview skills, mastering her introduction, and polishing her overall presence. Her involvement has been invaluable. Because of Kari, and my daughter’s equally hard work, my daughter placed in every competition she entered, placed top 3 overall, and was crowned the 2017 Illinois State Cover Girl. I expect that Nationals will have even brighter results.” - Cindy Gilmore, Mother of Julia Gilmore, NAMISS 2017 Illinois Cover Girl
"I have been competing in pageants for a little over 12 years and can attribute much of my success to Kari of Pageant Coaching and Designs! I first started working with Kari after I was crowned Miss Irvine USA 2016 where Kari was both my director and coach. That year she helped me earn a top 20 placement at Miss CA USA 2016. Kari’s coaching also helped me snag the title of Miss Beach Cities USA the following year. I honestly have no idea what I would have done without Kari’s guidance going into the Miss CA USA competition. She was with me every step of the way from gown shopping, swimsuit designing, and interview prep!
Before working with Kari I always thought walking was my strongest point of competition but she helped take my confidence, routines, and facials to the next level! Her walking and choreography coaching definitely paid off when I was crowned Miss California International 2017, where I also took home the fitness, fun fashion, and even gown awards! I was extremely nervous to compete in the International pageant system for the first time this year, but Kari made sure I was more than prepared. Her guidance, along with Samantha Riddle’s helped me earn a 2nd runner up placement at Miss International 2017 and I couldn’t be more grateful! I am incredibly lucky to have Kari in my life, not only as a director and coach but also as a friend. She cares so much about each of the women she works with and it is evident in her coaching style! If you are thinking about working with Kari, I cannot recommend her enough. My only regret is that I didn’t find her sooner! Since I have been under her guidance I have earned 2 local USA titles, a USA state placement, a state title, and an international placement. I can honestly say none of that would have been possible without her!" - Broooklyn Bizzle, Miss California International 2017
"Above and Beyond! Kari has gone farther than any other coach. She is not just a coach she is a friend and mentor. Through many ups and downs these past couple years, Kari has been with us through it all. Even when I had my surgery and could not get my daughter to coaching Kari reached out to me and made arrangements to come to us. She wanted to make sure that my daughter was ready for nationals. She truly cared about my daughter's experience. I had surgery that put me on bedrest for several months and Kari made sure that my daughter was ready for a national pageant without me even having to ask. She knew what we needed and made it happen. I was so touched and cannot begin to thank her enough. She makes a point of being there to support and encourage my daughter in a beautiful way. I cannot imagine life before Kari. She's become a valued member of our team and our family. Kari listens to me and my daughter and takes our input, she respects that each person is different and no two clients are the same. Her coaching has personal touches that you won't find anywhere else. With Kari you get a stylist, coach, mentor, cheerleader, and friend. Kari Volen, not just a coach." -Michelle Edwards, Mother of Grace Edwards, San Fernando Valley's Outstanding Teen 2016
"Working with Kari has been a game changer for my pageant preparation! I had competed twice for the title of National American Miss and never made the Top 10. For my final year competing in the Miss division, I decided that I needed some extra help and had heard great things about Kari. Not only did she provide great interview and walking practice, but she encouraged me, even during competition week, and I was able to fulfill my dream of making the Top 10 at Nationals! This past year, I decided to compete as a Miss in the Miss America system for the very first time, and was pretty nervous competing with women who had much more experience in the system. I knew that I had to start preparing with Kari right away. I placed 1st runner up in my first open pageant at Miss Orange County/Miss Orange Coast, and a couple of months later, I won the title of Miss Delta Valley and competed at Miss California this past summer! As a former competitor and judge, Kari knows the MAO system inside and out. It also amazes me how well she keeps up on current events, which is so helpful! Above all else, though, she always provides an encouraging, yet challenging, environment during her very reasonably priced sessions and even through phone calls outside of the sessions. I’m lucky to call Kari my pageant coach and my friend!" - Nicole Hornaday, Miss Delta Valley 2017
"I worked with Kari while preparing for IJM Miss International and I can genuinely say Kari is the best coach I have ever worked with. I felt so welcome and so comfortable with her and she taught me so much that I will continue to use. She really helped me build my confidence and over come fears. With the coaching from Kari I won first runner up in spokesmodel speaking about mental health and I would have never had the confidence to speak about something so close to me if it wasn't for Kari. I truly love Kari and can't wait to train with her again." - Jade Johnson, IJM Miss Golden State.
"Kari Volen is one of the kindest, most wonderful women I have ever known. She's not only my coach and mentor, but she's also a dear friend and supporter. I began working with kari when I was 17 and competed in National American Miss, and since then I am so proud to say that I have held the titles of National American Miss Alabama, Miss California International, and Miss Central California for the Miss America Organization. Although Kari has truly changed every aspect of my preparation, Kari has taken my interview skills to a whole new level and I owe all of my successes to her! I truly couldn't do it without her, and I am so grateful to have her on this journey with me. I love you!" - Stephanie Behring