Speaking to the World
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Comedian & Cancer Survivor
Karen Mills has been a nationally touring comedian for over twenty-five years. She can be heard daily on Sirius / XM comedy channels and clips from her comedy special "Pink Pants" have gotten over 15 million views. Karen has appeared numerous times on the Grand Ole Opry and recently recorded the new television show Stand Up Nashville - Live @ Zanies airing on the Circle Network. Read More >
Karen has a straight-forward approach to the realities of life. Her smart, funny, keen observations will keep you laughing at yourself as you relate to her experiences. Even Ovarian cancer couldn’t stop her from turning her pain into punchlines. Diagnosed in 2013 after a routine checkup, Karen was determined to take on the disease with hope and humor and in 2016 she was chosen to present her talk, "Cancer is a Laughing Matter" at TEDxChattanooga.
Karen has faced every challenge with determination. She stands at 5'2" and was told more than once that she was too short to play basketball. Not only did she play, in 1981 she led the nation in assists and became the first, Division 1 first team All-American in UT Chattanooga’s history. Karen was the first UTC athlete to earn that distinction in any sport, male or female. Her #12 uniform was retired and in 1981 she was inducted into Chattanooga’s Basketball Hall of Fame. Read Less ^
That’s Why I’m a Comedian
Humor for the Tumor
The Tell-Tale Signs Of Aging
TEDx Clip: Cancer Is a Laughing Matter
Menopause & Flying Monkeys
In May 2013 Karen’s annual trip to the gynecologist for her “routine” check-up turned out to be anything other than routine. What started as an ordinary turned into the fight of her life. Suddenly faced with Ovarian cancer, Karen did what she always does, looked for the humor. Karen will take you on a hilarious journey through her diagnosis, surgery, and chemotherapy and give you cancer tips that she wishes someone had given her, like never order a wig on the internet! Laugh and be inspired as Karen reminds you that your spirit shines through your smile, not your hair.
In 1976 during the Tennessee girls’ high school state basketball championship, Karen hit a shot with one second left on the clock to win the game. She had prepared her entire life for that moment. What she hadn’t prepared for was the eruption of the fans when the ball went through the basket — “Everyone was jumping, hugging and shaking my mother and her wig flew right off her head.” Karen received a full basketball scholarship to The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga where she earned All-American honors and became the first female inducted into the school’s basketball Hall of Fame.
Aging is hard! And yes of course everyone prefers getting older to the alternative, but it’s still hard! And yes with aging comes wisdom and clarity but I still don’t want to spend an hour looking for my glasses and then find them on top of my head! And yes, we do develop the ability to say no and we rid ourselves of toxic people but I still don’t want to sneeze and wet my pants. It’s hard! And if “it” is all about inner beauty then why is anti-aging a 50 BILLION dollar industry. Karen will tell you why, because it’s HARD!! Nobody wants to look old especially when you don’t feel old. If you're like Karen, Aging is like the movie Titanic - in your mind you’re young Rose but when you look in the mirror you’re old Rose. BUT, the one anti-aging technique that will give you that youthful glow is laughter, whether you are one or one hundred, laughter is contagious and is something that everyone wears well. So put on your sunscreen and Laugh on!!
"We are still on a "high" over here in Fort Smith! Karen had the crowd in the palm of her hand the whole evening! She has a marvelous way of presenting her insights, stories, and humor that is very appealing. Weaving serious thoughts with funny situations kept the audience at attention throughout her presentation. We loved it so much that she received a spontaneous standing ovation embellished with loud cheers and whistles. People are already asking if we can have her come back next year. It was a "tealific" evening, all the way around, but Karen was the main attraction."
"OH MY GOSH!! She was AMAZING!! She had the ladies ROARING!! I would totally have her back. Such a nice lady too. We LOVED her!!’ Evaluation comments: ‘Awesome, Engaging, Real’ ‘Wow wow wow, thank you’ ‘Enjoyed all of her humor’ ‘Tremendously Entertaining’ ‘Excellent! Thank you for making me smile, please bring her back next year!’ ‘!!!!GREAT!!!’ ‘she was very very good, enjoyed her very much WOW!’ ‘she was the greatest’ ‘loved the laughs, so funny, wonderful speaker, loved her’ ‘I got my 400 laughs’ ‘Wow what a gift she is’ ‘made me laugh amidst a very difficult time in my life, thank you"
"Karen Mills is a comedy rock star. Her performance at the Central California Women's Conference had us laughing out loud, rolling in the aisles, and trying really hard to remember her jokes so we could share them with our families later. And, she had us cheering for her and everyone else who has or is fighting cancer by sharing her story in a thoughtful and insightful way -- and, of course, with humor. Karen is a true joy to work with -- she is such a pleasure as a human being. Karen truly blessed our conference, and I couldn't recommend her more highly. Your event will be taken up a notch if you include her in it!"
"Karen did such a great job in delivering her message with humor. It was so perfect! Everyday people share with me how much they enjoyed her humor and message, so well done. I am sure she will continue inspiring people for years to come."
"WOW! Karen hit it out of the ball park for the Circle 1000 Founders’ Celebration Brunch! It was absolutely fantastic! Karen was such a joy to work with and our guests left laughing and commenting how she is now their favorite speaker."
"Karen Mills was invited to speak for our 8th Annual Women’s Power Lunch Against Cancer. She was fantastic! In the eight years of this event, this is the first time I have received multiple emails telling me how great our speaker was!” Karen was funny, compassionate, professional and a delight to work with on this event. I would highly recommend her."
“Karen had our Ovarian Cancer National Conference in stitches with her tales of coping with ovarian cancer. Cancer is a serious subject, but it was wonderful to see a lighter side through Karen’s comedy."
"Karen, you were HILARIOUS! You were so relatable and very easy to work with. I will definitely recommend you to anyone looking to lighten the mood and laugh until their stomach hurts!"
"Karen, you knocked it SLAP OUT of the park! I've heard nothing but great feedback. People are congratulating me like I was the one telling the jokes! Thanks so much for making us look good!"
"Karen, you hit the mark big time at our annual awards meeting. Your humor transcends age and male / female barriers. You were the perfect fit for a wide range of people. If you ever need a reference, I will highly recommend you."
"Karen, everyone is still talking about how good you were. It's so unusual to find someone like you who is so outstanding and not raunchy. You did a great job. It was super, super good!"
"Karen, thank you so much for speaking at Grand Canyon University commencement. Swoosh, nothing but net. You hit the nail on the head, both with the students and the rest of the audience. Hopefully, someone from the White House will hear you because you need to be recognized nationally. Our country needs to hear more positive stories/news like yours. You are the BEST Commencement Speaker I have ever heard at any graduation I have attended. You were hilarious so I had to look you up. You have a new fan to add to the many others. You made my day! Thank you sooooo much!"
"Great Job! Excellent comments. You delivered the perfect combination of laughter and inspiration. The teachers loved you, it was a great way to start the new school year."
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