NewsHaircare Entrepreneur Joe Louis Dudley Sr. Die At 86

Haircare Entrepreneur Joe Louis Dudley Sr. Die At 86

Dudley built an empire from his and his wife’s kitchen, eventually founding schools that trained generations of cosmetologists.

Joe Louis Dudley Sr., a pioneer in the haircare industry, died on Feb. 8 at the age of 86, leaving behind a legacy of achievements and fond memories. As the New York Times reported, Dudley built an empire from his and his wife’s kitchen, eventually founding schools that trained generations of cosmetologists. Dudley’s business began as a family affair, he stirred the formulas in a steel drum with a large spatula while his wife, Eunice, created the labels and their children screwed the tops on the bottles after the mixtures had cooled and set by the next morning. 

From those humble beginnings, the Dudleys took over S.B. Fuller’s business in Chicago, whose products they sold while in college at North Carolina A&T, before moving their business back to Greensboro and building a plant, which also sold Fuller products. Dudley, like Fuller, would go on to be described as a sales evangelist and was also a man of deep Christian faith, often employing those who had been incarcerated or experienced drug problems. 

Dudley, named after the Black boxing legend Joe Louis, was born on May 9, 1937, in Aurora, NC, as the fifth of 11 children. He stuttered as a child, which led to him being held back in the first grade as teachers used the acceptable term of the day, calling him “mentally retarded.” His mother, Clara, encouraged her son to “prove them wrong, Joe. Prove them wrong.” A moment that Dudley often recalled, and a motto that drove him throughout his life. Lafayette Jones, the chairman emeritus of the American Health and Beauty Aids Institute, an association of Black manufacturers, told the New York Times that Dudley was “a leader among Black hair care royalty.”

In 1995, Dudley won the Horatio Alger Award, which is an honor given to “leaders who have triumphed over adversity,” according to the organization. The other honorees that year were legendary music producer Quincy Jones, and Don Shula, the longtime head coach of the only undefeated NFL team in history, the 1972 Miami Dolphins. 

RELATED CONTENT: Uniting the Black Haircare Industry: One Woman’s Journey to Empower

Source: Black Enterprise

“The Morning Roast” With Cast of Professional Black Men Launches Season 2 in Major TV Markets

Nationwide — Live from the Cave: The Morning Roast is back for its highly anticipated second season, premiering on WGN TV Chicago on April...

Founder of Black Woman-Owned Streaming Service Launches Platform to Fund Stories Told by Black Creators

Nationwide — kweliTV, the premier streaming service celebrating Black culture from around the globe, announces the launch of kweliFUND, a groundbreaking crowdfunding platform designed...

Hip-hop and jazz festival at Kennedy center features hip-hop royalty

A standing-room-only, sold-out throng of hip-hop and jazz enthusiasts filled the seats of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Northwest...

Imani Jean: Freshman standout achieves early success at Howard

From the late Althea Gibson to retired legendary players such as Serena and Venus Williams and Zina Garrison to Naomi Osaki, Sloane Stephens, Ora Washington...

Davey Yarborough honored at Duke Ellington’s 125th birthday concert

As a celebrated musician and arts educator, still making strides in teaching jazz to young musicians, Davey Yarborough, will be honored during “Ellington at...

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest

“The Morning Roast” With Cast of Professional Black Men Launches Season 2 in Major TV Markets

Nationwide — Live from the Cave: The Morning Roast...

Founder of Black Woman-Owned Streaming Service Launches Platform to Fund Stories Told by Black Creators

Nationwide — kweliTV, the premier streaming service celebrating Black...

Hip-hop and jazz festival at Kennedy center features hip-hop royalty

A standing-room-only, sold-out throng of hip-hop and jazz enthusiasts...

Imani Jean: Freshman standout achieves early success at Howard

From the late Althea Gibson to retired legendary players...

Newsletter

Don't miss

“The Morning Roast” With Cast of Professional Black Men Launches Season 2 in Major TV Markets

Nationwide — Live from the Cave: The Morning Roast...

Founder of Black Woman-Owned Streaming Service Launches Platform to Fund Stories Told by Black Creators

Nationwide — kweliTV, the premier streaming service celebrating Black...

Hip-hop and jazz festival at Kennedy center features hip-hop royalty

A standing-room-only, sold-out throng of hip-hop and jazz enthusiasts...

Imani Jean: Freshman standout achieves early success at Howard

From the late Althea Gibson to retired legendary players...