By Leighanne Lockhart/ The Studio,
This week we are excited to introduce to the world The Studio’s newest team member— Regina! She sure ain’t shy. If a guest is so lucky to be at the salon on a day when Regina is here, they shouldn’t expect to make it out the door without Regina making sure they know who she is.
Regina is a member of The Arc of Southeast Mississippi, a United Way non-profit organization “devoted to providing community-based services to individuals with mental challenges and their families,” according to the organization’s website.
She came to The Studio through one of our regular salon guests, Connie, who is a volunteer with The Arc. Connie brought Regina in for an interview with owner Lisa Cochran in November 2014, and she won the boss’s heart. Little did Lisa know, Regina would soon become the boss.
Although that only makes three months Regina has technically been employed, she is quick to correct us.
“No, I’ve been here for two years now, 2014 and 2015,” Regina insists on telling guests. “And next year, I’ll be here for three years!”
In just a few short months, excuse me, “years,” Regina has become the little ray of sunshine that graces the salon twice a week with her hugs, jokes, laughter, clapping, dancing and singing. Very loud singing, I might add. She loves to sing “Something in the Water,” by Carrie Underwood to anyone willing to listen. She will promptly sing every lyric without missing a beat. We can hear every word even over our blow-dryers on full blast.
“What do you like about working at The Studio, Regina?” Lisa asks.
“Because y’all are so good to me,” Regina says. “Because of you girls.”
“That’s very sweet. What about the boys?” Lisa asks.
“Yes, I like the boys, too.” Regina says. And everyone laughs.
Regina keeps us all laughing. She’s always got a story to tell. They mostly are silly stories, but sometimes they are rather tragic tales. You never know what’s coming.
Regina comes on Wednesdays and Fridays for a couple hours to help us keep the salon tidy. She told us when she was hired that this job was “a dream come true,” for her. However, Regina will now tell you her favorite part of the work day is taking her break and sending one of us down to Wendy’s to get her regular— a medium chocolate Frosty. Lord help us if Regina doesn’t get her Frosty. Now she’s got us in a Frosty habit, ourselves.
Last month Regina told customers, “Yeah, I’ve been here for two years now, so I think my co-workers deserve to throw me a birthday party!” Oh, mercy. Boss lady Regina has been telling us we are throwing a birthday party for her since the third week she was hired. In fact, she made us a list to help us out. The list includes cake, Frosty’s, and pigs-in-a-blankets. She also informed us she wants makeup for her birthday. Regina likes ivory foundation.
On February 9th, the entire city of Hattiesburg better know it’s Regina’s birthday.
“Y’all are just wonderful people to work with,” Regina says to us. “And I like you because you do my hair, Bianca.” Bianca was recruited early on as Regina’s personal stylist and gave her a new color, cut and style!
Regina has been reminding us to have joy in the things we take for granted, like the jobs we hold and privileges we have been given. She is also teaching us patience and the beauty of treasuring the simple things. We are so honored and blessed to have her on our team and hope our guests get to meet her! She would sure love to meet you.