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Rudy & Kelly Academy
A Paul Mitchell Partner School Team

Meet some of the team members who make Rudy & Kelly, A Paul Mitchell Partner School, so special.

Kelsey Nikolaisen

Service Desk Coordinator

Experience in the beauty industry…

I have been working in the beauty industry for almost five years now. I started working as a shampoo girl/salon assistant at a salon and now I’m a service desk coordinator here at the school.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

My mommy. She has always been the person I can count on the most for anything in life and she always knows how to help me in any situation.

 

My favorite thing about working at Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

Even though I have only been here a short amount of time, they have welcomed me in with open arms.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

To always take the chances that life throws at you without regrets.

Bryant Murphy

Learning Leader / Texture Specialist / Nail Specialist, Paul Mitchell School graduate

Experience in education…

I have been a Learning Leader for over three years.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I have been in the beauty industry for 13 years.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

Angela Stuckey. She has been in business as a salon owner since the age of 18. She's my mentor because she supports me in this industry and is also very humble. She's also very knowledgeable about the business side. She's sweet as pie but very matter of fact about business, and it shows in the longevity of her career.

 

My favorite thing about working at Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

The culture. Learning how to become a professional stylist while learning how to become a better person is a big reward.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

Being able to give back to the community and having positive people in your corner to support you.

Brandi Mendenhall

Learning Leader, Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School graduate

Experience in education…

I have been a Learning Leader for almost five years, working at two different Paul Mitchell Schools.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

After graduating from Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School, I went to work in a salon. Shortly after, I found my way back to the school to become a Learning Leader.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

My parents. They have always taught me to be the best person I can be and to treat others as I want to be treated.

 

My favorite thing about working at Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

Watching the Future Professionals grow on their journey.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

Loving yourself and being the best that you can be.

Kristen Kent

Operations Leader

Experience in education…

I’m a proud Wahoo, having completed my Bachelor of Arts Degree in psychology from the University of Virginia. I began working at Rudy & Kelly Academy around the same time we became a Paul Mitchell Partner School. I've been committed to our Future Professionals ever since, holding roles ranging from service desk coordinator to night school director.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I grew up in the beauty industry because of my family. My grandfather is a hairstylist and is still working behind the chair to this day! Seeing him cut my son’s (his great-grandson’s) hair for his first haircut will forever be a favorite memory. 

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

Rudy Russo. His humility continues to amaze me.

 

My favorite thing about working at Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

The culture. I love how we train our Future Professionals not only to be great hairstylists, but to be great people as well. I’m most proud of what we do here when our graduates return to share their professional and personal success stories.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

“To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” —Micah 6:8

Stephanie Gunter

Administrative Assistant

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

My son! Before becoming a mother, I was not quite sure what I actually wanted to do in life or what my purpose even was. Eight years later, I have obtained two college degrees and am now getting ready to pursue my Master's Degree. Also, my mother—my biggest support system and cheerleader. Without her guidance, I wouldn’t be half the person I am today.

 

My favorite thing about working at Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

The culture! Starting with my interview, I immediately felt like I fit in perfectly. I genuinely love being around everyone I work with.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

Being able to live every day to its fullest potential with no regrets and a smile on your face.

Haley Carter

Service Desk Coordinator

Experience in the beauty industry…

I have worked in the beauty industry for four years, the last seven months with Rudy & Kelly Academy.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

My mentor is Joelle Fuentes, our service desk leader. Joelle has taught me so much, not only about work but also about life.

 

My favorite thing about working at Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

The family atmosphere between the Future Professionals and staff.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

Living life with an open mind and loving every moment you are given.

Jeannie Hopkins

Director

Experience in education…

I received my BA in sociology in 1979, but decided to change career paths and help my husband manage his two restaurants until selling them in 1985. A born teacher, I had a passion for education that led me into a 13-year career as a dance and exercise instructor.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I started my cosmetology career in 1997 as a stylist, and continued behind the chair for 12 years. Because of my love for education and inspiring others, I became an instructor in 2005 at Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School. I have experienced personal and professional growth, leading me into several areas of education and management.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

Rudy Russo, the owner of Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School. He exemplifies the qualities of a strong leader. I admire his honesty, humility, and kindness which is continuously demonstrated with our students and staff.

 

My favorite thing about working at Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

It aligns with my values of being kind and giving back! I was a creative master for three consecutive years for our annual FUNraising Campaign.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

Recognizing the good in people, helping others recognize their strengths, and most of all, filling my day with laughter and kindness!

Kelly Urban

Texture Specialist / Night Clinic Floor Leader, Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School graduate

Experience in education…

I began as a Learning Leader in 2006 and I continue my education through classes with the school, plus the salon that I work in.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I have worked part-time in a salon since I graduated cosmetology school.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

David Marc Campbell, who worked with Paul Mitchell for many years and has taught me how to love what I do every day.

 

My favorite thing about working at Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

Seeing the excitement on a Future Professional’s face when they finally understand what they are doing.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

Having my family and friends around every day and truly loving what I do, who I do it with, and who I do it for.

Christina Stocks

Theory Leader / Night Phase Two Leader, Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School graduate

Experience in education…

I have taught night Core, Final Phase, color classes, and have worked the clinic floor.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

I have worked behind the chair.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

My parents; I strive to be like them.

 

My favorite thing about working at Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

The people, from the Future Professionals, to the clients, to my team.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

To live free.

Christy Rusnack

Admissions Leader

Experience in education…

I have about five years of professional experience in the education industry, most of which comes from college admissions and recruiting. I love speaking with people about their career goals and interests.

 

Experience in the beauty industry…

The beauty industry has always been a big part of my life. Although I obtained a more traditional education, I have always had a passion for hair and makeup. I have many friends who are stylists and work in the industry. The thing I admire most about the industry is that stylists have the ability to give their clients the confidence they deserve.

 

My mentor, or the person who has most inspired me is…

My mom is the person who most inspires me. She is such a beautiful person and has taught me so much. I try to be more like her each and every day.

 

My favorite thing about working at Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School is…

Seeing the Future Professionals every day. It's awesome to see that they are working toward their career goals and doing something they are passionate about.

 

To me, living beautifully means…

Finding balance and peace in all areas of your life.

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