While certain areas in Cotati have seen a constant turnover of businesses, Ferrari Salon, smack in the center of town, has become a Cotati icon having been in business for 34 years. Originally started by Jasmine Deloro under the name Carefree Hair, Deloro’s associate Neya Ferrari purchased the business in the early 1990s, but Deloro continued working there until retiring only about a month ago. About seventeen years ago Lisa Cassidy started working in the shop as a stylist, eventually taking over the ownership about eight years ago.
However, Cassidy’s experience with hair started quite a bit earlier than that.
“I started at Santa Rosa Junior College after high school and took some business classes,” says Cassidy. “Then I decided I wanted to go to beauty school when I was 21. I worked in a bunch of little places and then worked at Lion’s Mane in Rohnert Park for six years before coming to Ferrari Salon. All together I’ve been doing hair for 26 years.”
Getting to know and chat with her clientele, some of which have been with her for over 20 years, is one of the favorite parts of her work as a stylist.
“I’m a talker so I like that I get to be creative and do different things all day and chat and get to know my people,” says Cassidy. “I think I would be miserable if I was stuck at a desk somewhere and not able to chat all day!”
A native Rohnert Park resident, Cassidy attended John Reed Elementary School, Rohnert Park Junior High, and El Camino High School in Rohnert Park. She stills lives in the E Section, her husband Craig Cassidy has owned and operated German Motors in Cotati for about eighteen years, and her three children attended Rohnert Park schools as well. For her, being a stylist was a perfect fit for her family, in that she could work part-time when her children were young and then move into the role of business owner when time allowed.
When asked what motivated her to get into this career originally, Cassidy explains that it was her long-time experience as a competitive figure roller skater since the age of four that inspired her to pursue this direction.
“I’ve been a competitive figure roller skater almost my whole life,” explains Cassidy. “You spend a lot of time getting your hair done, styling your hair and putting on makeup so I thought it would be a natural progression.”
Entering her first competition at the age of seven, Cassidy still competes, winning a silver medal in her category during the USA Roller Sports National Championships in Spokane, Washington this July. Besides her work as a stylist, Cassidy teaches figure roller skating at Cal Skate in Rohnert Park several days a week.
Today Ferrari Salon has five hairdressers and one manicurist who all work as independent contractors, but most have been there well over a decade and all live locally. To Cassidy, the shop feels like a family. The nail stylist has worked there over twenty years, Neya Ferrari still works there, and Jasmine Deloro worked there 34 years until her recent retirement.
“My philosophy has always been that I wanted to do hair that is economically affordable but really well done, for families,” says Cassidy. “I never wanted to be overpriced and pretentious. I just like to do my job. I love the street we’re on, I love the people that come in…. I just love working there.”