Crowns, gowns and runways have always been hypnotizing to the world. When it comes to beauty pageants, those who can no longer compete sometimes decide to run them. Perhaps you have a fascination with pageants and think you have what it takes to become a pageant director. You'll have interaction with contestants. You'll plan pageant events and shows. You can be a proud part of the pageantry community. Yes, you can go from watching on television to running the show.
Get prepared. While there is no particular education needed, it is always helpful to be a prior committee member, judge, contestant, stylist, retailer, or photographer in a capacity that has exposed you to the industry. You can also become certified to judge pageants in the Miss America system, although this is not a requirement to become a director in other systems.
Choose your system
Choose your system. The Miss America Organization and the Miss USA Pageant are among the hardest to get directorships in. There are usually many waiting in line who have already put a significant amount of time and work. Shoot small by contacting state pageants for smaller systems, such as Miss United States or Miss Teen America.
Brush up on your history and understanding of the particular system. Learn who the current queens are, their scoring system and also general knowledge of the organization. Also decide where you'd be interested in specializing. However, being the business manager for the pageant is one of the key positions that leads to director.
Prepare a pageant resume. This will be different from your professional one. It will include you experience in the industry and any other points of interest. If a job is relevant to a directorship, such as events planning, fashion or public relations, you should include it.
Set up a meeting with the national director in a small system or the state/local director in a larger system. Ask about open positions for volunteers. Also ask if there are currently any directorships available, although working for a system for a few years is recommended.
Prepare for the meeting just like you would any other interview. Be more mindful of your attire as you should look like a pageant director by being polished and poised. Tell those doing the interview that you understand most directors and volunteers are unpaid or have small stipends. There are also others where you must pay directorship fees. Be open to these options.
Work in various capacities on the board that deal with both organization and those that deal directly with contestants, such as in outreach. Within a year, it might also be useful to work for another organization for more experience.
Continue to network with other systems and attend events like wardrobe showings, state pageants and popular preliminaries. Also consider becoming a pageant trainer for aspiring contestants, taking into account that there might be a conflict of interest.
Look into further training at this point. Some organizations in your area might offer pageant boot camp or even consider becoming a columnist and writer for a pageant magazine, such as "Four Points." This will increase your visibility and also make you desirable to other pageant systems.
Begin to re-apply for director positions after you've completed all of these steps and have been involved for 9 to 12 months.
Being a former contestant gives you the best edge. It already contributes to your reputation factor and gives you more perspective about the process and system, especially if you're a veteran of that system.
Don't get discouraged if you do not become a director within a year or two. Some who cannot snag directorships often start their own local or paid franchise into another system.