Grand Finale

by Terry Watson | October 23rd, 2012

Photo by Howard Gaither

The styling team of Burlington’s premeir hair salon promises their clients a grand experience. In addition to enjoying the comforts of a warm and inviting enviroment, everyone is treated as family and provided with the best service possible. and Grand Finale Hair Studio, located at 200 Graham Hopedale Road, opened its doors for operation in 2005.

The first thing to come to mind when asked about her life as a professional hair stylist, Latonya Harrelson says ‘boy, how time flies!” The owner of Grand Finale for seven years, she says she gets the same feeling of happiness today, as she did when the doors of her business first opened.

A native of Caswell County, Harrelson enjoys her roles as business owner, stylist, wife and mother. She has enjoyed a professional career that has lasted for 15 years. After graduating from Bartlett Yancey high school, she attended Carolina Beauty College and finished with her license to style hair in 1995.

“Being a only child, God blessed me with my husband Roy. Together we have three children — Makayla, Kennedy, and Payton,” she says. She lives her life in a manner of which she hopes her kids will look up to and see as a decent example of what hard work and dedication can bring. She finds inspiration in God and believes that by putting Him first, everything else will follow.

Harrelson says she loves being a professional stylist because of the flexibility in her schedule as a mother, wife, and business owner it provides. “I love to meet new people. I love making them smile by providing them with a look that brings out their natural beauty,” she says. Even with the challenges of owning and operating a business, Grand Finale has evolved into one of the premier salons in Burlington. This is a true representation of her leadership and the dedication and abilities of the entire styling team.

Harrelson encourages everyone to chase their dreams. She hopes that her salon will continue to grow and offers a warm and inviting atmosphere to any professional stylist who may want to join the Grand Finale team.

Nathaniel Evans is a native of Baltimore, MD. After making the transition to North Carolina, he enrolled at Alamance Community College and received his cosmetology license there in 2011. He says that he always knew that he would someday be a professional hair stylist.

Since the young age of 14, Evans has been sharing his creative abilities with family and friends. “Often times, my cockiness and confidence have been misunderstood. I believe that I must exude confidence as a stylist. Doing so will make my clients feel confident about themselves also,” says Evans.

He pulls in inspiration from many of the people who encouraged to pursue his dreams; ultimately landing him in a the role he leads today. He specifically acknowledges his mother, grandmother, and great-grandfather for providing him with a foundation of love.

It’s his uniqueness and that separates him from other local stylist. “I love to make people feel happy about their image,” he says. When he is not in the salon, Evans spends his spare time singing at many churches in North Carolina. Evan’s advice for others is to “always put God first. Through Him, all things are possible!”

God has truly blessed Julia Herbin. Not just a professional hair stylist with 23 years of continuous service on her resume, she is also a student, teacher of her craft, and instructor. To be successful in her career, Herbin says it’s very important for her to remain current on the latest trends and changes in the hair industry, and to give back. This is accomplished by attending conferences and seminars. It also includes her providing her students with more than is listed in their manuals such as tutoring and conducting mock hair shows. Herbin also volunteers her service to cancer patients by providing them with custom wigs.

A native of Gibsonville, she grew up in Burlington. She says she loves to make people look beautiful and bring out their natural beauty using the gifts that God has blessed her with. She obtained her professional license from Alamance Beauty College and immediately began to share her gifts and talents. She says her mother, Irene Herbin had the biggest impression on her. “I used to watch her color her hair when she was younger. I also watched her press and curl hair of children in my neighborhood,” says Herbin. It was these experiences that convinced her that she would be a stylist one day.

In 1999, Herbin was certified as a cosmetology teacher with the state of North Carolina. Herbin says she receives confirmation when she is blessed to see her former students accomplishing their goals. The most valuable lessons she offers is advice. “Always project a professional image. You are the way you project yourself. Choose the career you love and you will never have to work a day in your life,” she states.

Some of the services she offers include weaving, cutting, and coloring. She says in the future she would like to only train students for the state board exam, and train teachers in a learning center. She also hopes that Burlington will one day see the creation of more schools and opportunities for aspiring stylist.

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