Miss February 1996 Kona Carmack grew up in one of the more exotic locales of any Playmate. She was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. As a teenager she loved going surfing and says she was one of only a few girls out riding the waves.
After high school Kona made a drastic change. She went to college at the University of North Carolina. She started off studying premed but switched her major to marketing. In her English 101 class she wrote a term paper attacking anti-porn crusader Catharine MacKinnon. She argued that Playboy is not pornography. She received an A for the paper.
While at North Carolina Kona began exploring the more creative aspects of her personality. She took a couple acting classes, which helped motivate her to try out for Playboy.
In addition to becoming Miss February, she was also selected as a Playmate of the Month in Germany and as Playmate of the Year 1997 in Japan. She continued modeling after her pictorial and traveled around the world for photo shoots. She spent time in both Milan and Rome and also worked for two years in Tel Aviv, Israel, where she learned how to speak fluent Hebrew.
After Playboy Kona moved to Los Angeles to study acting. She guest-starred on a couple episodes of Baywatch and competed on the reality series Search Party. She appeared in several music videos including Aerosmith’s “Hole in My Heart.” Most notably she played a major role in the independent movie Next Time,“ which made the Sundance Film Festival.
Kona took a break from modeling and went back to school. She graduated from USC film school in 2003. She’s worked on a number of popular television shows as a production assistant and in other capacities. Some of the more popular shows she worked on were Deadwood, Monk and Cougar Town. In 2014 she became an associate producer for the TV series Hot Hawaiian Weddings.
Although she gets tired of people asking her about Playboy, she doesn’t regret appearing in the magazine. She said, “It got me into the entertainment world and taught me so many lessons. I learned how to survive, how to be tough, how to be professional. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without having had that opportunity.”