As Editor in Chief of American Salon, Kelley Donahue reports on all aspects of the professional beauty industry, including salon business-building strategies, seasonal hair and fashion trends, salon services and techniques, and timely issues impacting manufacturers, schools, salons and distributor principals. In addition to conducting photo shoots--one of which was the recipient of an ABBIES Award for Best Magazine Cover--Donahue also travels extensively throughout the U.S. and abroad, sourcing out new trends and representing American Salon at major industry functions and educational events.
Education: It’s the key that opens the door to endless possibilities.
If there’s one thing Morgan Willhite is passionate about, it’s teaching clients how to embrace the lush waves they were born with. “I’m lucky because I’m living my dream,” says Willhite, who landed a gig early in her career at Ouidad’s namesake salon in New York City, studying under the Queen of Curl before taking up residence at Ouidad’s West Coast outpost as a stylist. When Willhite isn’t tending to clients behind the chair, she enjoys teaching her curl know-how to her peers. “Sharing my knowledge and empowering stylists is an incredible honor,” she says. ✂ —Kelley Donahue
One of my favorite memories as a youngster was accompanying my dad to a salon on Boston’s Newbury Street for a haircut. I considered it such a special treat and for days I prolonged the experience by giving my Barbie dolls a makeover. For me, there was never a doubt that someday I’d become a hairdresser.
After attending the Keene Beauty Academy in Keene, NH, I assisted Mette Idriss at Las Olas Beauty in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Ouidad visited the salon for training and we instantly clicked. Shortly thereafter, I moved to New York City to work at her namesake salon.
The 1970s is my favorite decade. I love the era’s shag looks and tousled shapes.
The Ouidad 12-Minute Deep Treatment—it’s the foundation that I like to base all my styles on.
Ouidad and Mette Idriss both had a big hand in transforming me into the person and stylist I am today.
Finding time! On any given day, I’m devising curly hair techniques, delving into product development, working behind the chair and hanging out with my 4-year-old son.
BEST PIECE OF ADVICE I EVER GOT
Strive to inspire. Everything I do should be as rewarding for me as it is for the ones I’m trying to motivate.
My son is my pride and joy. Work-wise, being promoted to creative director at Ouidad was a huge vote of confidence for me.
I’m currently focusing my creative energy on devising new techniques to style all types of curls.