Cosmetology Community Mourns Loss Of Icon

Deborah Howell, the namesake of the Chicago-born Debbie's School of Beauty Culture, passed away quietly in her sleep on Monday, June 4, 2018 in Houston, Texas, where she and late husband, Jesse Howell, made their home since the early 1980's.
By: Abiiba Howell
Deborah A Howell
Deborah A Howell
HOUSTON - June 14, 2018 - PRLog -- Born Deborah Charles Archie to parents Jerry and Leora Archie, on October 20, 1933 in Memphis, Tennessee, Debbie, as she was known, became a Chicago resident at age three, when her family relocated to the new city. By age eighteen, she had given birth to three children and dropped out of high school to pursue a career in beauty culture in an effort to care for her children.

Upon receiving her beauty license, she opened Milady's Beauty Salon where she got the entrepreneurship bug and decided to pursue her GED with the thought of going to college to improve her management skills. With a passion for hair and business, Deborah and her husband Jesse Howell opened Debbie's Schools of Beauty Culture in 1964. The schools grew from one cosmetology school in Chicago to seventeen throughout the United States. From five  locations in Chicago, three in Texas, two in Atlanta, GA, one each in Birmingham, AL, Detroit, MI, Waukegan, IL, St. Louis, MO, Indianapolis, IN, Memphis, TN and East St Louis, IL, they graduated over 50,000 students. The schools were the largest black-owned Cosmetology schools, and the first Cosmetology school to participate in the federally funded programs such as Pell Grants.

With husband Jesse, Debbie was a self-made millionaire by the age of 40.  In 1984, they launched Debbie Howell Cosmetics, entering the market as one of the first cosmetics lines made exclusively for women of color and distributed through direct sales beauty consultants. While the cosmetics are still available, the last cosmetology school closed over the mid-to-late 1990's.

Debbie was a woman of faith and a loyal member of Christian Tabernacle Baptist Church in Chicago for over 30 years and a member of New Light Christian Center in Houston for the past 20 years.  She often quoted her favorite song, "We Come this Far by Faith", as her anthem for success.  One of two girls and five brothers in the family,Debbiewas preceded in death by her husband, Jesse Howell, brothers Jerry Archie, Roy Archie, Clifford Archie, Joseph Archie; sister, Doris Maybin; grandson, DeMond Calhoun, and granddaughter, Angelique Duncan. She leaves behind one brother, William Archie and his wife Jane; daughter Doris Williams, son Glen Alexander and wife Laura, daughter Rosalyn Fagen and husband Thomas, daughter Dr. Cynthia Henderson and husband Prentiss Jackson, and daughter Abiiba Howell; granddaughters Marieka Duncan, Glynnus Alexander, Jessiica Howell, and Imani Jackson; grandsons Matthew Fagen and Matthew Jackson; seven great grandsons, Dekere Calhoun, Calvin Mills, Kevin Johnson, Evan Duncan, Mitchell Russell, Mason Russell, Maximillian Thomas, and Darnell Fagen; two great granddaughters; Canaiah Calhoun and Serenity Calhoun, and a host of nieces and nephews.

Services will be held on Saturday, June 16, 2018, from 10:00 am until 11:00 am for the viewing and 11:00 am until 12:00 noon for the service, at New Light Christian Living Center at 1535 Greenmark Drive, Houston, TX  77067. A repast will be held at a family members home from 1:00 – 5:00 pm.

We celebrate the life of Deborah A Howell for her accomplishments and her contributions to the world of beauty. Despite her circumstances, she served as a testament that you can use excuses or you can create success. A mother, an entrepreneur, and a trailblazer, she will truly always be remembered and loved by all.  For more information:

Abiiba Howell
Source:Abiiba Howell
Tags:Debbie Howell, Deborah A. Howell
Location:Houston - Texas - United States
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