This year the North American Hairstyling Awards celebrates business success with a new competition category—the Salon Master of Business Award. Designed to allow business-savvy owners to show off their labors of love, the Salon MBA Award encourages owners to submit information on their salon’s demographics, existing and new business strategies, retail promotions and sales, marketing and community service strategies, and current financials and future plans.

“With the Salon MBA, we are able to recognize not just a salon owner, but a true businessperson and all the efforts in creating a successful business,” says Bonnie Bonadeo, PBA’s director of program development and education.

This year’s nominees are: Shawn Trujillo and Angie Katsavenvas, owners of Lunatic Fringe in Salt Lake City, Utah; Karie and Aaron Bennett, owners of Atelier Aveda Salonspa in San Jose, California; Tina Morschauser and Gretchen Brown, owners of the Rejuvenation Spa in Madison, Wisconsin; Kendall Ong and Beate Assmuth-Ong, owners of Mane Attraction in Phoenix, Arizona; Debra and Charles Penzone, owner of The Charles Penzone Family of Salons in Columbus, Ohio.

Modern Salon caught up with a few of these nominees and asked their thoughts:

On the application process…
NAHA honors salon business ownersThe Bennetts: “It was a wonderful education in itself. During the entire process, we put a microscope on every aspect of the business and was already brainstorming improvements. What a wonderful gift to be nominated in this new category, among such amazing colleagues.”

On NAHA honoring business… The Ongs: “We think it is wonderful that NAHA is going beyond the artistry that goes into creating beautiful hair, because to run a beautiful business, you need to have creativity and artistry as well.”

On their business strength… The Penzones: Our biggest strength is our team of professionals in our salons, corporate office and call center that have the passion and purpose for our industry and our community. After our team members, we would have to say our ability to continue to reinvent and re-imagine our 41-year-old brand. We challenge ourselves everyday to keep it young, fresh and new.”

Business Builders is compiled by Stacey Soble, ssoble@vancepublishing.com.