(Image of Geno Stampora - NAHA20 - 2009 - Hall of Leaders Award - Image by Edan Kencayd - HairBoutique.com - All Rights Reserved).
The awards were a spectacular extravaganza of music, lights, stunning hairstyles showcased on gorgeous models and restrospectives of many of the greatest leader in the hair and beauty industry over the years.
One such leader honored at NAHA 20 was Geno Stampora. From the NAHA crowd's response it was clear just how beloved Geno was to so many in the industry.
Honored with the NAHA Hall of Leaders Award, Geno Stampora was presented the award by industry legend Sam Brocato.
Sam explained the first time he met Geno Stampora he walked up to Sam with a copy of the book and said "I've got your book." Sam said to Geno "have you read it?" Geno said "no but I sleep with it under my pillow."
(Image of Sam Brocato - NAHA20 - 2009 - Hall of Leaders Award - Image by Edan Kencayd - HairBoutique.com - All Rights Reserved).
Sam said "Geno took the time over the years to read books. To study people, to reach deep inside himself where his own passion and love for this industry lies. He's never lost touch with the beauty, the people in this industry, the people who love him so much."
Sam continued "but he did something that put him in this Hall of Leaders tonight that so people really really do. And I heard somebody today talk about a book that said it takes 10,000 rehearsals and performances to really be a John Lennon and a Paul McCarthy or Ringo Starr. To be great. There's few people in this room who haven't sat and listened and witnessed Geno Stampora's hard work. The years of hard work."
Sam addressed Geno directly and said "Geno its been so amazing to watch you take the raw ambition - your passion and love to give and to learn to channel it."
He said "when I watch the people around you step up and talk to me and talk to you and say how you've changed their lives. I really don't believe leaders become leaders because they want to become leaders but I believe people like Geno Stampora become leaders because they have a passion that they can not even control. They have to follow their passion so. I'm honored that you asked me to present tonight and I thought there was a surprise guest person was going to help me with it, but I haven't seen her - and if she's back there come out. But if not...I want to tell you..."
(Image of Maryanne McCormack - NAHA 2009 - presenting award to Geno Stampora - Image by Edan Kencayd - Hairboutique.com - All Rights Reserved).
Sam was excited and told the audience - and she is here.....Maryanne McCormack." Maryanne walked across the stage and addressed Geno. She said "Geno, I watched you become a hairdresser, a salon owner, a school owner, a distributor. I watched you help people throughout your career. And now are you not only are you still helping the hairdresser, but you're helping a lot of other people also."
Maryanne continued "and I just want you to know that even now that I walked around the show all day in a blonde wig because I didn't want to run into you and I wanted you to be surprised."
She said "anyway John (her husband) couldn't be here but from both of us we're really really proud of you and what you've done sooo." Sam said to Geno "you know how much my boys love you and Coley worked hard on a little piece for you." Sam said so I want to run a short video for you Geno."
A short film clip was run about Geno's life. The film started by saying Geno was born June 4th, 1950 in Englewood, New Jersey. Then the film was sped up. It showed Geno speaking really really fast. Then a voice said....Geno graduated from cosmetology school in 1978 and then went to work at The Haircut. The film ended with a series of photos of Geno and said "where can you be if you really tried?"
Geno Stampora was then called up onto the stage to accept the Hall Of Leaders Awards. The crowd gave him a standing ovation and kept calling out his name...Geno, Geno, Geno.
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Please follow us on Twitter at: https://Twitter.com/HairBoutique. I look forward to meeting new people from all walks of Twitter and learning from their Tweets.