Ever since Felicia Brown became a massage therapist in 1994, she’s been passionate about inspiring and mentoring others in and out of the spa industry. Now, as the owner of Spalutions!, she provides business and marketing consulting, and education for massage and spa professionals. In addition to writing and speaking for numerous trade publications and conferences, Felicia has won several awards for her business skills and accomplishments. They include Spa Person of the Year in 2009 by The Day Spa Association and 2005 Small Business Person of the Year by the Greensboro (North Carolina) Chamber of Commerce. She’s also a Certified Guerrilla Marketing Coach, NCBTMB approved provider and licensed massage therapist.
Russian-born Tamara Friedman arrived in Detroit in 1975 with her husband and twin daughters, a nontransferable nursing degree, Russian training in esthetics and cosmetology, and $200. In the years that followed she became a day spa pioneer, gradually building her award-winning Farmington Hills, Michigan-based Tamara Spa into a 10,000-square-foot, full-service health and beauty spa. Tamara remains a force in the industry today, visiting spas across the U.S. and Europe to bring the best available treatments back to her clientele, and receiving numerous accolades from beauty and fashion magazines, trade publications and local business organizations.
Beauty expert Cynthia Malcom, founder and education director of Edgar Renee Aesthetic Education and Consulting Group, has been in the beauty industry since 1998. Starting as a nail technician, she opened Hand Candy Mind & Body Escape Day Spa in Cincinnati, at 24 years old. From there, she became a licensed esthetician and found her niche as an advanced skincare specialist presenting seminars throughout the U.S. and internationally. Combining her entrepreneurial spirit with her drive to continuously learn, the CIDESCO Diplomat has been instructing under the moniker Edgar Renee—a fusion of her son and daughter’s names—since 2010. In 2013, Edgar Renee became a brick and mortar company, educating individuals from New York, Illinois, Michigan and Pennsylvania, and Nicaragua, Barbados and the Bahamas. Currently, Edgar Renee offers state board licensed continuing education classes for instructors, estheticians, cosmetologists, manicurists, massage therapists, business owners and nurses. Resources, such as keys to successful business management and ownership, are also available.
A respected authority in the spa industry, Alexis Ufland is the owner of Lexi Design, a spa consultancy firm that has developed premier spas and fitness centers across Europe, Asia, South America and the United States. She has written numerous articles on spa and fitness development, has been quoted in the top industry trade magazines and has lectured at national and international trade events. Alexis currently resides and works in New York City and is developing luxury day, hotel and medical spas throughout the United States, South America and Europe.
Tracy Whynot, MS, LAc, owner and principal of Place360 Health + Spa in Del Mar, California, specializes in pain and stress management, oncology, dermatology, women’s health and digestive disorders; her personal philosophy is to holistically enhance each person’s health and beauty via a fusion of Chinese medicine, massage and skin care. Tracy’s passion began at an early age with her first facial treatment, which resulted in a mentoring relationship that led to her initial massage therapy training at Desert Institute of Healing Arts in Tucson, Arizona, and Skin Care at Catherine Hinds Institute of Esthetics in Boston. Tracy is now a licensed, board certified acupuncturist with a masters of science in Traditional Chinese Medicine, and she trained and completed rounds in gynecology, dermatology, diabetes and Chinese medical massage at Chengdu Traditional Medicine Hospital in Chengdu, China. She was also trained in Thai Massage at the International Training Massage School Chiang Mai, Thailand. Tracy has traveled extensively throughout Indonesia, China, Tibet, Thailand, the Middle East, Europe, Mexico and the Caribbean, researching the best approaches to wellness. She’s previously practiced at some of the top destination spas, including Canyon Ranch Health and Fitness Spa, Miraval Life in Balance Spa, and Cal a Vie.