My family and I migrated from Portugal to Lowell, Massachusetts. Since I was young, I was always interested in technology, so after high school I started working at a computer company, Wang Labs. While working as a computer technician, I enrolled in the Mechanical Engineering Program, and about four years later I left and started my own computer business. It was during those early years that a friend recommended I should attend cosmetology school. I soon discovered I had an artistic ability for cutting hair and fell in love with it. After graduating from cosmetology school, I began my hair styling career at Salon Vergados where I worked for nine years. It was at this salon that I established myself as a stylist with a strong work ethic and a responsible manager. I credit my success at this salon to the salon owner, my mentor, boss and great friend, Nick Vergados.
In 1993, I left Massachusetts and moved to South Florida. Here I worked at two salons, Sam Jon’s in Wellington and Chenzo’s in Boca Raton. Sam Jon and Chenzo Balsamo provided their guidance, mentoring and friendship in helping me strengthen my skills in becoming a successful business entrepreneur.
In 1998, I briefly left my hairstylist career to become a part-owner of the restaurant Club 251 in Palm Beach (one of the top night clubs in South Florida at the time), moving on to become the managing partner of the night club until early 2000. In the year 2000 I joined haircolorxpress, a new franchise company headed by Chenzo Balsamo, Pasquale Benasillo and Larry Feldman. As Director for Salon Development and IT division, I helped build salons from the ground up which included training salon management and operations of the franchises. The company changed its name to haircolorxperts before being sold in 2003.
My business partner Gary Israel, and I purchased one of the franchise salons in Coral Springs FL in late 2003, two years later I bought the salon from Gary and became an independent sole proprietor under a new salon name, haircolorconcepts. In addition to running the salon, I provide consultant training solution systems to salon owners with a customized plan to manage their future growth in a successful business.