Andrea Roy, or as we Rutions know her, Nooch, joined our team in 2002. She has been essential to the continued growth of our company and team. Mrs. Roy has held countless positions during her years with us: color expert, educator, manager, creative team member, mentor… and the list goes on. She’s always sharing her passion for her profession, her clients, her team, and most importantly, our company values.
Fun fact: Andrea has the best, most perfect handwriting in the world! It’s like a typewriter—if you even remember those. LOL!
What prompted you to work at Gila Rut?
Before moving from Chicago to San Diego, I read an article in an industry-focused magazine featuring Keri Davis-Duffy, the owner of Gila Rut Salon. She talked about changing the public misconception of what our industry is about. “You can be just as successful as a doctor or a lawyer if that’s where you put your intention,” she said. She also talked about the importance of what we do with our guests every day—not just in a technical sense, but our power and responsibility to make the guest feel valued. “The guest can’t tell between a good haircut and a great haircut, but they know how you made them feel.”
I also respected that she ran her company as a corporation, giving her staff the same benefits you’d expect from a Fortune 500 company. Employees got things like healthcare and paid vacation, but the company was both founded and run by Keri and her mother, CEO Carol Davis. I wanted to be a part of a company that had a clear business path, paid attention to excellence, and was devoted to its team’s development. Gila Rut was and still is that company!
What was your job/career prior to working at Gila Rut?
Before Gila Rut, I worked at a Chicago salon where I did both cuts and coloring. However, I always wanted to specialize in color. My educational background was focused on fine arts, and painting was and will always be my passion!
What was your defining moment that brought you to be a hairdresser/manager?
I didn’t grow up wanting to be a hairdresser, but was given the opportunity to do this as a backup plan in case the “art thing” didn’t work out. I quickly fell in love with the color theory of cosmetology. Seeing that I could actually make a career from it made me respect this profession that much more!
How has Gila Rut changed the course of your career?
Since day one, Gila Rut gave me the opportunity to choose my own career path. I’ve worn many hats while working at Gila Rut. I have been an educator, an assistant manager, a hiring manager, an ATL, an Aveda Ambassador, a Creative Team member, an Outreach Team member, and a mentor. I took each position on with the focus of continuing Keri’s vision and at the same time allowing myself the opportunity to learn and grow.
What are some of your hobbies outside of work?
I enjoy spending time with my husband, John, and our dog, Chief; seeing live music; going to art exhibits; running; hiking; paddle boarding and getting tattooed!
If you could do anyone’s hair, who would it be?
Michelle Obama’s or Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s.
1992, my first time being featured in a hair magazine!
Have you done the hair or makeup of a celebrity?
Being a part of the Creative Team has allowed me many opportunities to work with celebrities. I’ve done hair for The Daytime Emmy Awards, ComicCon, & The Old Globe Theatre.
What is the craziest thing anyone has said while in your chair?
After doing hair for 25 years, I’ve learned not to be surprised by what my guests choose to share with me. I often say that I’m cheaper than therapy! That being said, I love that my guests feel that they can open up if they want to.
What was your worst hair moment?
My worst hair moment was early in my career. I was given my first formal styling guest and I had never done an updo before. She was going to a big event and she had one-length hair to her waist. I fumbled through it knowing I was out of my league. After what felt like an eternity, I had to have a more experienced teammate take over and finish it for me. I was mortified! The next day I signed up for a formal styling class and practiced till I could do them in my sleep!
How often do you change your hairstyle?
I try to change my look as often as I can. That’s one of the perks of being in this industry: I can change my appearance and be as subtle or as drastic as I choose. I have literally been every color of the rainbow and have had every length of hair! After all, I can’t expect my guests to make a change if I don’t do the same.
What’s your biggest claim to fame/biggest achievement?
Standing up in front of 3,000 plus people and presenting our Mystic Collection on Aveda’s main stage in 2015. My second biggest achievement was getting to meet and spend time with both Vidal Sassoon and Horst Rechelbacher, founder of Aveda.
How does it make you feel celebrating 25 years with Gila Rut?
I am honored to be celebrating the 25th anniversary with Gila Rut. I have grown so much with this company over the last 15 years. My teammates have celebrated with me in moments of joy and have quite literally picked me up off the ground in times of sorrow. I have made amazing friendships with guests, and I look forward to another 25 years of success with my Gila Rut tribe!