My pageant story began the spring semester of my senior year at the University of Kansas – 1981. I was busy wrapping things up with finals and graduation, having a great time with my Tri-Delta sorority sisters, recovering from the whirlwind of performances for the Rock Chalk Musical Revue and modeling in Kansas City, on the side. What a fantastic time I'd had at college, yet I wasn't quite sure what the future held for me. I knew I could find a job, but didn't want just any job. I wanted to make good use of my soon-to-be BFA, doing what I loved; singing, performing and creating art. That's when my close friend ( and future roommate), Leann Folsom, (the reigning Miss Kansas -1980) pursued me about competing in a Miss America Preliminary. She said, “There's probably a couple more local pageants you could enter before Miss Kansas in July – why don't you do one?!” Well, my knee jerk reaction was,“Pageants are your thing, they're just not mine!” She said, “Right, and I suppose you wouldn't want the opportunity to perform for a large crowd and earn some scholarship $ or cash if you win?” Hmm, she did have a point. After all, I already modeled and loved the idea of the money and performing... “OK”, I said, “But I'll really need your help, I don't know the first thing about pageants!”
Help me, she did and I won my first Miss America Preliminary -“Miss Shawnee”, qualifying me for Miss Kansas where I placed 3rd runner-up! I now understood this “pageant thing” - it was so exciting! I hadn't only caught the “pageant bug”, I had contracted a terminal case of “pageant fever” that I've never been able to shake! (HA!) A couple of years, a few pageants and another title later, I decided that I would learn to view pageants from the other side as a judge and chaparone. These jobs proved fruitful to me as I saw through a judge's eyes what a contestant “looks like” and the objectivity a judge must have; and as a chaparone, viewed the contestants from behind the scenes. This gave me a completely different perspective! I had also landed my first “real” job as an Interior Decorator, was still modeling and on the weekends, was singing in a Top '40's Band – so, busy as I was, I'd never been happier –or so I thought.....Enter; my sister, Debra Schaeffer (Rosenthal). She, too, had been a model and had competed and placed in some teen pageants. She had been asked to help coach (or “groom” as we used to call it) a lovely teenage girl from the Kansas City, Mo. area, for a state pageant. Debra asked if I would like to help her; I agreed and as luck would have it, our first student, Rhonda Hoglen, won her very first pageant and became “Miss Missouri American COED” 1984! We were ecstatic! Soon after, my sister and I joined forces and became “Lea & Lee Associates - Pageant Grooming Consultants”! (Incidently, Lea and Lee are our middle names!) Now, I could truly say, I'd never been happier –nothing is more rewarding than helping someone else achieve success!!! As “Lea & Lee”, we enjoyed HUGE success teaching modeling and pageantry classes and producing many, many winners! We also produced and sold a pageant coaching video, nationwide, entitled - “How To Win Pageant Competitions” - one of the first of its kind for young competitors!
Four years later, when Debra needed to discontinue coaching, I continued on solo, as pageant coach , entertainer, judge, choreographer and workshop teacher, traveling nationwide; I also added voice coach to my resume', as well! As a singer/performer, I began singing national anthems for special events, singing for countless weddings, opened as a featured vocalist for name bands like “The Bangles” and performed at numerous state pageants and local / state fairs, as well. I also recorded original songs in both Branson and Nashville. All of this activity was the direct result of my pageant experience – you might say, pageants became the “stepping stone” and “spring board” to my career success! I am proud to say, to date, I have coached literally hundreds of students to become the best they can be! Countless have held local, state and national pageant titles and/or have been leads in plays, musicals or even fronted bands! What's especially pleasing to me, is seeing them achieve their goals and dreams and becoming very successful people; performers, physicians, teachers, coaches, attorneys and a myriad of other types of professionals – many of them have become great parents, too! I know that being a mother is the most important job I'll ever have – my three great guys, Mark-21, Ben-16 and Charlie-14, keep me plenty busy and provide me with a lot of joy and fun! They give me fresh perspective and inspiration to stay “on top of my game” as a voice/pageant coach!
I'd love to help YOU develop your communication and performance skills and help you to become the BEST you can be, too! I'm so glad you've taken the time to visit Voice and Pageant Coaching by Jodi Rinehart, because learning to be a great communicator STARTS HERE!!!
Once our coaching begins,
most of the fears are replaced with confidence. I'm no magician, nor a miracle worker (I'll leave that job to God!) I can take the guess work out of your performances and I will give you the skill-sets you will need to perfect your performance– to be the performer and person you envision yourself to be. It's not only about your performance on stage, but the performance you give every day- the one that says “I can do it, I believe in myself and have the confidence and skills to be my very best!"
So what are you waiting for? Let's get started!