Team

Back to Sassoon Academy

Meet The Team

A Sassoon Instructor is unique, passionate about their craft and educated to the very highest standards in the Sassoon proprietary methods; they love their subject and are absolute perfectionists in their specialist field. Undertaking rigorous initial training that is continually updated, each Sassoon Instructor has excellent subject knowledge that they deliver with pace and interest. They develop minds and talents in a nurturing, engaging way to help you achieve your full potential.

Traci Sakosits
Traci Sakosits

Traci Sakosits

North American Creative Director

Traci Sakosits

North American Creative Director

Traci Sakosits
Biography

North American Creative Director, Traci Sakosits started her training at Sassoon in New York in 1992, where her talents were soon recognized and she moved swiftly up the ranks. She transferred to the Beverly Hills Salon as a stylist in 1994 and was promoted to Assistant Creative Director two years later. The call to teach came quickly, and Traci then moved to the Los Angeles Academy in 1997, where she has been based for the last 15 years. While in Los Angeles, she earned the roles of Creative Director and Regional Creative Director, before being appointed the role of North American Creative Director in April 2012 as a result of her passion and dedication to Sassoon.

As North American Creative Director, Traci coaches and inspires all the Sassoon stylists in the Salons and Academies across the country. Her calm temperament, incredible talent and giving personality make her the ideal person for this role. Traci’s position also includes leading shows and seminars around the globe, presenting the latest collections on beauty runways and styling Sassoon editorial shoots. Thousands of fellow hair professionals and students have been empowered by Traci.  "From the very start of my career, I knew I wanted to teach. I love the idea of carrying on the Sassoon ethos,’’ said Traci.

What inspires you
  • My son, whose eyes are always wide open
  • The creative process
  • Photography  “…capturing a moment in time”
Who do you admire
  • Creative people who are courageous and giving
Top tip
  • Surround yourself with a great network of people who have high standards and are willing to share knowledge and skills
  • Practice makes perfect
  • Education is the key to success and ongoing education can raise the level of hair design
Richie Rivera
Richie Rivera

Richie Rivera

North American Color Director

Richie Rivera

North American Color Director

Richie Rivera
Biography

North American Color Director, Richie Rivera started his Sassoon career at the Los Angeles Academy in 1992. He then went on to complete his apprenticeship at the Boston Salon in 1993, where he has been based for the last 19 years. During Richie’s time at Sassoon, he has worked as Salon Color Director and East Coast Regional Color Director before earning the prestigious role of North American Color Director in April 2012. In this role, Richie has the ultimate responsibility of educating and developing the next generation of colorists and tinters in all the North America Salons and Academies.

Over his 20 years with Sassoon, Richie has gained a reputation for being a gifted educator, who captivates his audiences while teaching the renowned Sassoon color techniques. Frequently representing Sassoon internationally, from Japan to Brazil and everywhere in between, Richie spends much of his time showcasing Sassoon collections and leading countless shows and seminars. Additionally, his talent behind the chair has led to a fiercely loyal clientele in Boston, where he continues to see clients on a regular basis.

What inspires you
  • Art
  • Fashion
  • "The Youth”
Who do you admire
  • People who help others
  • Anybody who can fix anything
Top tip
  • Continuing education
  • Dedication
  • Be humble
Chris Ace
Chris Ace

Chris Ace

Instructor

Chris Ace

Instructor

Chris Ace
Biography

Always filled with new ideas, Chris is an integral part of the Sassoon academy teaching team, a stylist in the Beverly Hills Sassoon Salon, he works closely with the creative team on a daily basis. Chris began his career in cosmetology in 2007, then in 2018, came to Sassoon as a student in the comprehensive cutting course in Santa Monica. After being exposed to the possibilities within hair design, Chris never left the building and stayed on to become a Sassoon Instructor.

At an early age Chris gravitated towards design and found his way through multiple mediums. Music, architecture, hair and fashion to name a few.

"It's been fascinating to move through the senses and to now find myself in such a special type of visual design. Working with hair is a hands on craft that allows for unique  opportunities to connect with others, a moment in time that cannot be replicated...

The intention to craft beauty with such attention to detail is what inspires me to work with Sassoon. You are given the understanding of the law of the material, ultimately allowing access to the next level"

What inspires you

- To deconstruct what was built. to recreate for the now, and innovate for tomorrow

Who do you admire
Top tip

- Breathe 

Isabella Barone
Isabella Barone

Isabella Barone

Instructor

Isabella Barone

Instructor

Isabella Barone
Biography

Isabella’s Sassoon story started in 2015 when she attended the10 month Cosmetology course in Santa Monica.  Isabella instantly fell in love with the Sassoon culture and soon after graduating, received her California Cosmetology license.  This is when her career in hair began. 

Inspired to color hair, Isabella joined Sassoon Salon, San Francisco as a color apprentice where her passion, determination and talent saw her quickly qualify.  Her journey came full circle when she returned to Los Angeles and currently holds the position of Color Instructor where she truly embraces being part of the creative team.

With a strong focus on sharing her color knowledge and inspiring others through her own knowledge and experience, she has become an integral member of the Academy team.

As one of newest Academy Instructors, Isabella’s beautiful creative spirit brings a fresh, relatable approach to teaching, inspiring both clients and team alike.

What inspires you

Travelling

Top tip

Never stop pushing yourself.
Make a new goal for yourself every week and achieve it no matter how big or small.
Have a mind like a sponge.

Randall Broussard
Randall Broussard

Randall Broussard

Senior Cutting Instructor

Randall Broussard

Senior Cutting Instructor

Randall Broussard
Biography

With a Sassoon career spanning over 25 years, Randall’s passion for the brand and the industry is evident in each course he leads. He started as a student at the Santa Monica Academy and worked at Sassoon Salon locations throughout the country - Beverly Hills, Chicago, Scottsdale and San Francisco – before returning to Santa Monica in 2001.

Between inspiring his students in Santa Monica, guest teaching at the London Academy and leading seminars throughout North America, Randall’s extensive knowledge combined with his patient teaching style make him one of the most sought after instructors in the company.

What inspires you
  • The people in my life
Who do you admire
  • My parents
Top tip
  • Be yourself
  • Go out and earn it. Nobody owes you anything
  • Take care of yourself; it’s a physical job
Colton Jones
Colton Jones

Colton Jones

Assistant Creative Director

Colton Jones

Assistant Creative Director

Colton Jones
Biography

Colton began her journey with Sassoon taking a Comprehensive Cut course at the Santa Monica Academy in 2008. Upon graduation, she began working and training in the Atlanta Salon, where she qualified as a stylist in 2010 and in 2012, was promoted to Top Stylist.

After realizing her passion for teaching, Colton accepted a position at a beauty school in Atlanta. “I gained valuable teaching experience there, but my heart was with Sassoon,” Colton said. Staying true to her heart and her beginnings in the industry, Colton left Atlanta in May 2014 and is now thrilled to be a Cutting Instructor at the Santa Monica Academy.

What inspires you
  • Music
  • Traveling to new places
  • Encountering genuine passion in other people
Who do you admire
  • My Grandfather
Top tip
  • Don’t be afraid to take risks
  • Always remain humble
Allison Lyle
Allison Lyle

Allison Lyle

Creative Director / Instructor

Allison Lyle

Creative Director / Instructor

Allison Lyle
Biography

Scottish born, Allison Lyle grew up in Fort Myers, Florida and worked as a Stylist for 6 years prior to joining the company. Her Sassoon career started in 2002 having been inspired by the iconic precision cut and colour techniques. She attended numerous courses at the academy before she joined the Miami Salon where she began training as a Stylist.

She started teaching in the Miami Academy and Salon in 2004, after two years she moved to Washington DC in 2006 where she became Creative Director. Having been a Stylist helps her to relate to the students she has taught and what they experience in their salons on a daily basis.

Allison is now Senior Instructor at the LA Academy, regularly participating in Shows and Seminars across the country such as International Beauty Show (IBS), NYC and International Salon & Spa Expo (ISSE), LA. She has also spent time teaching at the Wella Studio in LA and NYC as well as our London Academy. She thoroughly enjoys sharing her knowledge and experience with others. The most rewarding aspect of her career has been ‘Being able to share what I’ve learnt about hair and what I love about hair,’ said Allison.

What inspires you
  • People watching
  • The internet
  • Fashion magazines
  • Museums
Who do you admire
  • The amazingly talented team I work with on a daily basis. I am honored to work with like-minded people that share so much passion for what they do.
Top tip
  • Find a mentor and always strive to take your craft to the next level
  • Invest in a great haircut because it is something you wear every day
  • A Mason Pearson brush is great for smoothing hair and lasts forever
Holland Wells
Holland Wells

Holland Wells

Colour Instructor

Holland Wells

Colour Instructor

Holland Wells
Biography

Throughout her early life Holland was very creative and had a passion to serve people in some way.  Then in her early 30’s she came to the realization that she could combine both by doing hair and started on her journey in the beauty industry.

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Holland knew that if you’re going to do hair in LA and get the best education and opportunities then you go to Sassoon Academy.    After graduating the cosmetology program she continued her years of training at Sassoon Beverly Hills, quickly realizing that she had a passion for color and decided she wanted to become a Color Instructor at the Santa Monica Academy.  So in 2019 when an opportunity presented itself and a position became available, Holland was ready and honored to step into the role of Color Instructor. 

What truly inspires Holland is giving back all of the knowledge and skills she has gained throughout the years from the talented instructors who have inspired her.  She feels honored to be a part of the journey for the new cosmetology students every day.

What inspires you
  • Brookland and Londyn, my two beautiful daughters.
  • Surrounding myself with hard working and dedicated people doing what they love, no matter what that is.
  • Making people smile
Who do you admire
  • My mother and Father
  • People who give back, wanting nothing in return
Top tip
  • Never settle 
  • You can do anything you put your mind to
  • Have a little faith 
Lucus Etcitty
Lucus Etcitty

Lucus Etcitty

Color Director / Instructor

Lucus Etcitty

Color Director / Instructor

Lucus Etcitty
Biography

Lucus began his career with Sassoon in 1994 at the Chicago Salon and went on to work in Sassoon locations all over the world – London, San Francisco, Scottsdale, Leeds, Frankfurt, Munich - before finally settling into his current position at the Santa Monica Academy in 2003.

As Color Director, Lucus guides both new and seasoned color specialists - sharing the spectrum of Sassoon color techniques from color theory and application to trends. He is also a fixture on the trade show circuit and regularly travels to represent Sassoon as part of the Academy Team. Lucus’s patient and enthusiastic teaching style has made him a favorite amongst students and one of the most requested color instructors in Santa Monica.

What inspires you
  • 1980’s
  • Music
  • Fashion
  • Photography
  • Window displays in Soho
Who do you admire
  • Quentin Tarantino
  • Alexander Wang
  • Proenza Schouler
  • Hedi Slimane
Top tip
  • Always keep the level of “standard” in your work
  • Get an education; it builds confidence
Al
Al

Al

Instructor

Al

Instructor

Al
Biography

With a career in cosmetology that spans over 40 years, Al has a strong passion for teaching and a passion for helping his students achieve their goals. During his tenure in the industry, Al has served as President of the Associated Cosmetology Teachers Association, State Board examiner at Riverside Community College, holds two Life Credentials in Cosmetology and now holds the position of State Board Instructor at Sassoon Academy in Santa Monica.

Student success is the primary focus of education; therefore as a teacher today, Al aspires to model values and professionalism in the classroom.  He considers working at Sassoon Academy a privilege, as he feels he works alongside some of the greatest artists this profession has to offer. Al love’s positive quotes and one of his favorites is “Don’t worry trying to impress people; just focus on how you can add value to their lives.

Karim Hubbard
Karim Hubbard

Karim Hubbard

Advanced Course Administrator

Karim Hubbard

Advanced Course Administrator

Karim Hubbard
Biography

Karim joined Sassoon in 2014 as a receptionist after looking to expand his
education and repertoire in a creative industry.
His vibrant, enthusiastic and organizational skill were quickly recognized
and he is now a key member of the Admin team responsible for all Advanced
course bookings. 

Karim loves being surrounded by creative and passionate people where
individuality can flourish, making Sassoon the perfect environment for him.
His position allows him to interact with a diverse mix of people from around
the globe with different backgrounds and cultures.

What inspires you
  • Progression
  • Motivation
  • Positivity
Who do you admire
  • Albert Einstein
  • Martin Luther King
  • Tupac
  • John Legend
Top tip
  • Follow your dreams
  • Never give up, love what you do
  • Without struggle there is no progression
Stephani Patterson
Stephani Patterson

Stephani Patterson

Head of Cosmetology

Stephani Patterson

Head of Cosmetology

Stephani Patterson
Biography

Stephani leads the only Sassoon Academy Cosmetology Department in North America, singlehandedly recruiting the elite group of students who want the best career foundation available.  Counting 30 years with Sassoon Academy, Stephani’s sincerity shines through all her recruiting sessions as she personally completed the Cosmetology Program in 1980. Due to her firsthand experience, she provides exceptional insight into a program that shapes the careers of the next generation of hairdressers. Stephani’s commitment to sharing the Sassoon philosophy inspires hundreds of future hair professionals each year while ensuring the continued success of the Cosmetology Department in North America.

What inspires you
  • New trends
  • Art
  • Music
  • Our Sassoon team
Who do you admire
  • Hillary Clinton
  • Chanel
  • Robin Roberts
  • Alexander McQueen
Top tip
  • Always remain professional
  • Always continue to seek great additional education throughout your career in this industry
  • Always do your very best and remain kind to all who work with you, to all who work for you and to those that are your clients