CHARLESTON – Two Jefferson County business professionals recently were hailed for their contributions to West Virginia with The State Journal’s “Generation Next: 40 Under 40” designation.
Vi Vo Nguyen and Tiffany Lawrence were the sole winners from the Eastern Panhandle.
Nguyen, 34, is the owner of VIVO Hair Salon & Day Spa in Harpers Ferry. Lawrence, 31, is a Shepherdstown native who works in marketing for the United Way of the Eastern Panhandle.
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin recognized each winner during the March 6 reception.
It’s the ninth year that the weekly business newspaper based in Charleston has held the event.
“The annual ‘Generation Next: 40 Under 40’ awards are designed to promote the good stories of incredible young professionals making a difference in the Mountain State,” State Journal managing editor Ann Ali said in a news release.
Nguyen, who grew up in Cam Ranh, Vietnam, relocated to the United States in 2000. Her husband’s job as a builder brought the couple to Charles Town two years later. The couple has two sons, ages 11 and 9.
Nguyen is known for her efforts to bring the state’s beauty industry into line with regulations in place elsewhere in the nation. In 2011, Tomblin came to her spa to sign into law an idea she pushed that allows salons to hire shampooers who have taken a short training course in the state’s health and sanitary practices regarding washing hair rather than only those with degrees from beauty or barber schools.
Her next effort involved getting West Virginia to adopt the licensing structure already in place in Virginia, Maryland and other states. She also pushed for West Virginia to begin to offer its written cosmetology licensing test in other languages instead of English alone.
Lawrence is the youngest woman ever elected to the Legislature. The Democrat ran for the seat representing part of Jefferson County when she was 25.