BY LOGAN MCCOURTNEY –
Dianne Rotter grins looking out the big glass window in the new Yankee Clipper salon. Her smile tells the story of a rich history of serving the people of Mena. After serving customers for five decades, she still has the same passion, you can see it when she talks. “We are excited and ready to continue serving the community,” says Rotter.
Dianne and her husband Dave moved to Mena from Iowa in 1987. As she smiled and looked up, she recalled the memory like it was yesterday, “We had a choice to move to Detroit or Mena and we chose Mena.” Many people have enjoyed the talents of Dianne over the years, but it was actually Dave’s job with Brodix that brought them to Mena.
Dianne cut and styled hair for 18 years before moving to Mena, but she wasn’t sure if she would continue. She said, “When we moved I thought I was done, I wasn’t sure if I would continue.” That would soon change, “We moved here and I served as an instructor at the cosmetology college and worked at the Pine Bowl. It was fun because I got to know a lot of the wonderful people in Mena.”
When you sit in the renovated salon one thing becomes apparent to you, these stylists are passionate about what they do. Dianne shared, “Our passion is helping people look better, feel confident, and keeping up with current trends that people are excited about.” She spoke highly of the stylists in the salon, “They work hard, genuinely enjoy the customers, and value each of them.” Dianne kindled her passion for styling hair like most girls do, styling her doll’s hair.
If there is one thing Dianne said she wishes people know about the salon is, “Everybody personally cares about you and you are welcome here.” Recalling a memory that shaped her, Dianne excitedly said, “June and Charley Wiles, they made me feel like I had a part here and belonged.” She never felt like someone who just moved here. “I felt at home,” said Dianne. That experience motivates her to provide those same kind of memories for customers. She understands what its like to be new somewhere, and wants people to know, “I’ve been in their shoes and I want them to feel welcomed as I did.” The satisfying thing about her job is, “I get to know the people from here, feel like I’m contributing, and make people happy.” Undoubtedly, the customers make this experience so satisfying and keep the stylists passionate. “We want people to feel they are at home and people have always said our shop was clean and felt comfortable.”
The big smile you see at the salon is not show, but is really who Dianne is as a person. Outside of work, she loves spending time with her kids and grandkids. She beams when she talks about her kids and five grandkids, one of those a great grandchild. There is no denying when you talk to Dianne, she loves people. She has done more than love her family and cut hair, but Dianne has been passionate about serving the community in a variety of ways. Her sorority Beta Sigma Phi at the time was preparing for a Make & Bake, a fundraiser that included an auction of baked goods. “Our little group has raised $2-3,000 before. All the funds raised go back into the community. I’m really passionate about this because one year my daughter had cancer and all the money went to help her. You don’t forget something like that and you want to continue,” says Dianne. Along with her sorority, she is in involved with the Lioness and PEO (an educational organization).
Dianne talked with amazement as she talked about the renovated space the Yankee Clipper is enjoying. “This new space was exactly what we wanted, we are excited and think that the community will be too when they come in,” says Dianne. The Yankee Clipper still offers all their previous services, but are now expanding. Coming soon, the Yankee Clipper will offer massage therapy, yoga classes, and skin and facial care. Dianne is excited about having liscensed individuals for each area and believes the community will love it. Dianne spoke with great joy when she mentioned the yoga class. “This is for ladies who love yoga, are looking to get started, and want a more comfortable environment. Everything from the instructor to the class size has been designed for the comfort of our customers,” says Dianne.
Dianne and the talented ladies at Yankee Clipper would love to serve you and welcome you to the family. “I was told by a student years ago that I should name my shop Yankee Clipper because I was from the North. I did and it stuck with us. Don’t worry, we are family here and would love for you to join us,” says Dianne. Yankee Clipper takes walk-ins, appointments, and it’s not too early to call and ask about their new services. They are located at 601 Highway 71 in the Northside Shopping Center next to Beatniks. Make your appointment or get information about their new services by calling 479-394-2374.