THE DIGITAL REPOSITORY FOR THE BLACK EXPERIENCE

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Maker interview details

Profile image of Roger Gore
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Interview

  • August 18, 2004

Profession

  • Category: StyleMakers
  • Occupation(s): Personal Care Entrepreneur

Birthplace

  • Born: December 23, 1966
  • Birth Location: Washington, District of Columbia

Favorites

  • Favorite Color: Red
  • Favorite Food: Fish
  • Favorite Time of Year: All Seasons
  • Favorite Vacation Spot: Florida

Favorite Quote

"If You Can't Do The Little Things, You Can't Do The Big Things."
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Biography

Roger George Gore was born on December 23, 1966, in Washington, D.C.; his mother worked as a school bus driver and his father worked as a driver for Greyhound and later Miller Beer. As a child, Gore suffered from sickle cell disease.

In 1984 Gore earned his high school diploma from Crossland High School in Maryland; upon his graduation, he received a scholarship to Frostburg State University, but discovered during orientation that he felt that college was not for him. Gore decided to attend beauty school instead; he had previous experience because an uncle had taught him to barber, or cut hair, when he was sixteen. Gore graduated from Robert Lewis Beauty School in Washington, D.C., in 1987. From 1986 until 1993, Gore worked for famed Washington, D.C., hair stylist Barry Fletcher at his salon Avant Garde Hair Gallery.

By 1991, at age twenty-five, Gore had won more than five first place finishes in national hair competitions and major trade shows. In 1992, Gore organized a cosmetologist and barber association called UACE, which provided insurance, retirement plans, and health benefits to hair stylists. While still working for Fletcher, Gore helped co-found a group called The Hair Gangsters, which consisted of four male stylists who traveled around the country teaching classes and hair styling techniques. In 1994, Gore developed a product line called G'Natural Herbal Products; his product line began with two hair and scalp products and eventually grew to include nearly twenty skin and hair care products, sold in more than sixteen states.

In 1992, Gore published his first book, No More Weave Please, a guide on how to repair damaged hair. Gore's book was controversial among some professionals in the field, but a best seller with African American customers concerned about their personal hair care. In 2004, Gore wrote and published his second book, Hair Gangster, which was a step-by-step guide to succeeding in the beauty industry. During that same year, Gore launched a second hair care product, called HipHopz, geared toward teenagers and young adults.

Gore was the recipient of the 2000 The Measurement of a Man award from Budweiser. His products are used by a number of celebrities, including Eddie and Gerald Levert, The Dells, and Jamie Foster Brown, editor of Sister 2 Sister magazine.

Previews from the Digital Archive

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