By Nichole Harwood 

New Mexico’s first non-profit salon is looking to make its premiere in the Duke City! Spearheaded by CEO and Founder of the non-profit Passion’s Story, Priscilla Smith is looking to make waves in the style and fashion industry by opening the doors to the field for women experiencing homelessness and other forms of abuse. 

Tackling the issues of homelessness is a critical for Smith as she sees the salon as an opportunity to uplift and enrich the lives of the less fortunate in our community. 

Passion's Story
Passion’s Story was born from a program our founder Priscilla Smith implemented in her local nail salon. Since 2016 this process helped dozens of young women use the beauty industry to build better futures.

“50 percent of the homeless population in Albuquerque are teenagers; there are a lot of youth aging out of the system, and I believe that we can figure a way to teach them how to use their creativity and use the industry to build them up – Passion’s Story isn’t just a non-profit its a movement,” said Smith.

In addition to her work with Passion’s Story, Smith is also the CEO of Paixxão a nail salon that has trained several graduating beauty school students for the past seven years. Through this process, Smith saw how the nail industry could teach young women self-worth. Inspired, Smith is ready to take her observations to the next level with her work at Passion’s Story. The road ahead may be long, but Smith is one of many working towards her goal. Joined by several other voices in the beauty industry, Smith is raising funds for her dream with her upcoming event, Passion’s Story 2023 Galantine’s Day Gala. 

2023’s Galantine’s Day Gala is a special day where Smith and her partners are bringing the community together to celebrate young women. Held at the Albuquerque Marriot Pyramid, this formal event will feature several public speakers from within the Albuquerque community, such as Fashion Designer Kimberly Rose and International International Guest Speaker Jessica McClaren.

In addition to sharing their stories, MC Clarq will introduce an exclusive fashion show that will feature items available for a silent auction, with proceeds to build the new salon. These looks will be created by JulieAnns Fashion Boutique LLC and Terese Designs Rose who have combined forces to deliver the hottest fashion show featuring 20 Models; with each look created by contributions from stylist and nail technicians from Mark Pardo SalonSpa, the Aveda Institute of New Mexico and Paixxão.Co

Guests will be able to enjoy the highlight of the season in style as they are treated to a lavish meal, cocktails, and more, all while supporting a worthy cause. 

All proceeds from this event, Smith said, will be used to build the non-profit salon and empower those underserved in the community.

“The chance to see the improvement in our city is the main reason I think companies are going to want to get involved because they’re going to have a front-row seat to see just how this is going to make that happen,” Smith said. 

Along with partners in the industry, Smith will be hosting the event along with the non-profit organization SHE (Strength, Health and Empowerment); by having her fellow non-profit by her side, Smith hopes her message will reach even more within the Albuquerque community. 

“Passion’s Story is not just a non-profit; it’s a movement,” she said. “It’s a movement that will mobilize the beauty industry.” 

Are you interested in grabbing your ticket for the show? Grab your ticket in the link here. Is your business interested in becoming a sponsor? Find more information about sponsorship opportunities here!

Love the style industry? Check out how the Aveda Institute helped makeover one local Albuquerque woman here!

Video by Thomas Harwood