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The Barstool Fund - J.Michael Salon

Thanks to Penn National Gaming for their donation to help cover our next business… J.Michael Salon (Livonia, MI)

J.Michael Salon's stylists have been providing excellent service since 1997. Their friendly atmosphere and superb stylists have earned them many loyal customers over the years.

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Nancy Leonhard has owned her hair salon for over 14 years. She has worked so hard to make a special place for all of her employees and customers to feel welcomed and beautiful. For years this business has thrived with the loyalty and support of our community. For 4 consecutive years, the salon was nominated on Fox News ClickOnDetroit for “Best Hair Salon in Metro Detroit”. Nancy has earned this nomination by always putting others before herself and giving back to the local community. Majority of her employees have been with this business for over 20 years. The salon is family-oriented and a lot of the clients have become close friends over the years.


When COVID-19 hit, our governor mandated all hair salons to close for nearly 2 months. These months of shutdown left majority of her stylists with no income and struggling to support their families. Even with the business closed, the landlord didn’t forgive or reduce rent. Now with the state regulations, she is still only allowed to operate at 50% capacity. The salon used to be a packed business, and now stylists are forced to rotate days to ensure they keep a safe social distance. Nancy works tirelessly trying to ensure each stylist has availability to come in and safely work to make a living. She has helped support the stylists by giving them hair color and other products at discounted costs (cheaper than what she purchases them for). She personally goes in weekly during off-hours to clean and sanitize the work stations. She spends almost everyday at the salon whether it be cutting hair, helping at the front desk, or running supply errands.


On top of recent business struggles, Nancy’s husband Jeff was diagnosed 5 years ago with a rare type of lymphoma. After his diagnosis, he was forced into early retirement to begin treatment. He is still fighting for his life and currently participating in clinical trials. In addition to the medical bills, Nancy is responsible for all of the salon bills, including rent, utilities, and products. The landlord has refused to reduce the monthly expenses, even though they are only operating at 50% capacity. The salon is home to 13 stylists and 3 receptionists, most of which rely on this business to feed their families.


The holidays are normally the busiest time of the year for the beauty industry. However, in early December Nancy ended up contracting COVID-19 and was hospitalized with complications for 2 weeks. She wasn’t able to cut hair for a month, which resulted in her dipping into personal savings to pay the salon expenses. Overall, the business has seen a 50% decrease in income compared to 2019. It has been a constant stressful situation and Nancy has been through so many struggles and devastation in the last year. She is in dire need of assistance, even if it is something small. My hope is that we can relieve some of the burdens and ensure this business remains open for all the employees to make their livelihoods.