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Maureen Houssein-Mustafa awarded AO

In a first for the beauty and hair industry, the top honour was recently awarded to Ms. Houssein-Mustafa, who was awarded an Order of Australia medal for her service to vocational education and training, and to the community.

Ms. Maureen Houssein-Mustafa

At a special luncheon hosted in honour of Ms. Houssein-Mustafa’s achievements, the thrilled recipient of the award said, “I am truly humbled by this honour. However, this award really belongs to my staff, family and friends, who have supported me and worked alongside me to achieve all of the goals we have set professionally and within our community in the quest to give back. This is a very proud moment for us all, and from the bottom of my heart, I want to thank everyone who’s been behind me throughout this journey.”

And what a journey it has been. Ms. Houssein-Mustafa established the Australasian College Broadway in 1994 on a paltry $1,600 budget, when she saw firsthand that staff training, and high standards were severely lacking in the Australian Beauty Industry.

Based on excellence, which remains the mission for her and her 98+ staff today, the College has grown in leaps and bounds, and is currently valued independently at $30 million.

Over 800 international and domestic students study annually in the state of the art premises in Broadway, and the recent expansion of the property will take this number to in excess of 2,000 students. In 2009, the College was selected as a New South Wales Telstra Business Awards Finalist in the Panasonic Australia Medium Business Award category.

In her professional capacity, Ms. Houssein-Mustafa has been acknowledged by this award for her equal commitment to excellence of quality training in the Vocational Education and Training Sector. Maureen has invested countless hours ensuring that the hair and beauty industry continues to set globally recognised quality benchmarks.

And, as the daughter of a first generation Cypriot Turkish migrant couple, who was born and bred in the tough neighbourhood of Redfern, Sydney, Ms. Houssein-Mustafa has always understood what it’s like to live through tough times. As such, giving back to the community at the College and in her personal life, has always been an unquestionable policy.

To name but a few programs for which the Order of Australia Medal was awarded, Maureen and the College has been involved in assisting NSW Police at Leichhardt Local Area Command, in training, mentoring and assisting in job skills for unemployed youth.

The team has donated scholarships to the ‘SISTER2sister’ program assisting young ‘at risk’ girls in entering the hair and beauty industry. It also donated hair and beauty services to build the self esteem of other girls involved in the program through the ‘Life Changing Experiences Foundation’.

The College has had an ongoing commitment to support ‘Canteen Camps’ and their fundraising Gala Dinners in 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010.

And on a business level, Maureen has been a fundraiser and board member of the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Sydney for over 10 years.

The Order of Australia Medal has recognised Ms. Houssein-Mustafa’s immense body of work and commitment both to the Industry and the Community in which she lives and works.

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