International Professional Standards Network

Celebrating success in New Zealand

Wellington’s Te Papa Museum came alive on Sunday 22 November as barbers, beauty therapists, and hairdressers gathered for the Industry Awards.  Each year HITO collaborates with Kitomba Salon Software and the New Zealand Association of Registered Hairdressers (NZARH) to hold the Industry Awards.

The awards celebrate excellence in training and business in the hair and beauty industries.  For HITO CEO Erica Cumming, the awards night is always a highlight of her calendar.  “It’s fantastic to see such commitment to excellence in our industries. The standard of entries only gets higher every year”.

This year almost 250 guests gathered to enjoy the celebration. There were two incredible hair fashion shows as part of the night, one of which featured work by designer Sophie Voon. Cathy Davys, who took out the award for HITO Trainer of the Year on the night, created the hair for these shows with the help of several apprentice volunteers.

Our hosts Tom Murphy, Kitomba CEO, Erica Cumming, HITO CEO, and Lynette Karam-Whalley, NZARH Chairperson, kicked off the night. Each gave a welcoming speech.  “Tonight, national awards recognising the very best in NZ are up for grabs,” said Tom Murphy. “Many people and businesses will win awards tonight. Clearly, winning any award tonight is major success.  But I’m sure we all agree, being a finalist tonight is success. I congratulate each and every one of you. You all have the admiration and respect of us all”.

HITO’s Apprentice of the Year is one of the most highly anticipated awards of the night and won by New Plymouth’s Courtney Jackson. It was a milestone moment for Courtney who has been the runner-up for the last two years. It was Courtney’s motivation, commitment, and dedication that saw her claim the overall title.

“It’s so overwhelming to be the HITO Apprentice of the Year 2015. I’ve worked so hard over the last three years to get here. When I did HITO Apprentice Boot Camp with Mana Dave, he told us never to let go of your dreams. To achieve this dream of mine is incredibly amazing and overwhelming”.

HITO Training Salon of the Year is another sought-after award that was won by Christchurch’s True Grit Hair Spa for the second year in a row. After overcoming the loss of their salon in the Christchurch earthquakes, owner Jacqui Victor says that this win “keeps us going and proves we’re on the right track”.

29th January 2016