Meet Katie Steller, owner and founder of Steller Hair Company, a 7 chair hair salon located in NE Minneapolis.
Steller Hair Company opened in June of 2013, and has grown at an incredible rate. Katie’s motivation to open her business came from her personal experience in the hair industry. She realized that instead of complaining about what she did not like she had an opportunity to change her experience and lead by example in her own salon.
Katie entered into the hair industry when she was 18 years old, but her story began much earlier. At age 11 she was diagnosed with an auto immune disease called Ulcerative Colitis. This diagnosis dictated a lot of her childhood, but it did not dictate her spirit. Throughout illness and life circumstances, she became a determined fighter.
When Katie turned 18, her illness had progressed beyond remission, and she had her large intestine removed. This was also around the time she became inspired to become a hairstylist. Her serious health challenges resulted in her beginning to lose her hair. Losing something can make one realize it’s value. Seeing Katie’s distress, her mom decided to book her a hair appointment with a family friend. Katie had never received a professional haircut before, and after having her hair cut and styled, she realized the impact a hairstylist could have on their client. During her appointment, she was more than an illness: she felt like a person. A person who was beautiful, cared about and important. This experience changed her personally and professionally.
In every aspect of her life Katie strives to be an advocate for people: her employees, clients, and all members of her beloved community. She believes in showing up, even when it feels difficult, and doing the very best in every situation every day. The reputation and growth of Steller Hair Company is evidence that she is succeeding in these goals.
In 2017, Katie had the idea to start a project that would help spread positivity and kindness. Katie decided that she wanted to use her skills as a hairstylist to celebrate and uplift those around her. Her idea developed into something even bigger; “Steller Kindess Project.” In a world where it can seem hard to find a silver lining, this project is meant to inspire and bring joy to others. If fear is contagious, why can’t kindness be? Steller Kindness is a platform meant to recognize and celebrate those in our community who show up, and have a positive impact on those around them without even knowing it. No act of kindness is ever too small.
“Changing the world starts on a micro level. It starts with showing up and being kind to the person right in front of you.” - Katie Steller