Memo Exclusive: An Interview with Mark Spinks, Spirit of Life Honoree

City of Hope’s National Professional Salon Industry Group will honor Mark Spinks, president of Cosmoprof, Armstrong McCall, Sally Beauty Holdings, with its 2017 Spirit of Life Award at a gala on the evening of July 8, 2017 to be held during Cosmoprof North America in Las Vegas. City of Hope cancer treatment and research center in southern California is one of the world’s top rated cancer hospitals and The Spirit of Life Award is the most prestigious philanthropic honor they present annually to an industry leader who has demonstrated outstanding business and philanthropic achievement. Along with the great honor comes great responsibility, as honorees are tasked with creating a fundraising campaign that the professional industry can get behind and support.

With months yet to go, MODERN asked Spinks to give us a look at his plans as they start to take shape.

 MS: Up until your honoree designation, what has been your experience with City of Hope?  Have you been to the Duarte campus, before?

MS: I have had the opportunity to attend City of Hope’s Spirit of Life celebrations for the past several years and always appreciate seeing our industry come together to support this worthy cause. Unfortunately, too many of our loved ones are impacted by cancer. We have had several people in our organization who have had family members benefit in life changing ways from City of Hope, so I’m grateful for the opportunity to contribute to this organization. I’m looking forward to visiting the Duarte campus for the first time in the coming weeks.

 MS: What are your goals for the event?  And for the campaign?

 MS: My main goal for the event is to enjoy an evening celebrating with the many amazing people in the beauty industry, while raising money in support of such an important organization like City of Hope. 

Throughout our campaign, we will continue to raise awareness about City of Hope and its important role as a world leader in the research and treatment of cancer and other serious diseases. We will work hard to encourage our industry to come together to celebrate life and to raise funds to support City of Hope’s admirable work. I’m always inspired by what the professional beauty community can do when we work together, and I’m optimistic that together we will have a memorable and impactful campaign this year for the organization.

MS: Have you identified a theme?

 MS: Yes, the theme for this year’s campaign is “The beauty of innovation, the beauty of hope.” One of the cornerstones of the beauty industry is innovation. The same can be said about cancer research; innovative treatments and thorough cancer research give us all hope. The cutting-edge research conducted at City of Hope is remarkable. It has contributed to advancements in technology, which have saved countless lives, and I’m looking forward to celebrating this aspect of City of Hope throughout our 2017 campaign.

 MS: Who is working with you to plan and organize the event?

 MS: I am fortunate so many people have offered to get involved and lend a helping hand. Harlan Kirschner (of The Kirschner Group) and Sara Jones (of Joico) have both shared their experiences as previous Spirit of Life Honorees. Andrea Courtney with City of Hope is also a key part of the team as well as Rachel Jud, Jen Wilder, Jessica Itturalde and Stacy Gaspard from our CosmoProf Team. 

 MS: Will you involve your vendor partners?  And, if so, how?

 MS: One of the hallmarks of the campaign is the Spirit of Life dinner. I’m grateful many of our vendor partners will join us that evening to celebrate the organization and support its mission. We are also exploring other opportunities to get involved, details of which will be forthcoming.

 MS: Do you think the beauty industry is a charitable one?  And, if so, why?

 MS: Over the years, I have been amazed by the many examples of our industry coming together to support those in need. I’m grateful for the opportunity to be a part of an industry where we rally around those in our community and work together to make a difference. Whether it is a natural disaster, personal experience, or a community challenge, I have seen countless examples of giving – financial or otherwise. 

 MS: Do you have any personal experiences you would like to share relating to the cause and the cancers and conditions City of Hope works on? 

 MS: Like many, I have lost family members to cancer. Unfortunately, I think you would be hard pressed to find families not affected in some way by this terrible disease. Recently, we have also had several key members of our BSG Leadership Team fight cancer. It is my hope we can raise funds to further cancer research, leading to new and innovative ways of treating this disease.



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