Carrie Perkins, Veda Salon

Carrie Perkins dedicates herself to healthy living — for herself, her Veda guests and staff and for those supported by the nonprofits she has embraced in the Colorado Springs community.

To say she worked her way up in the salon and spa business is no exaggeration.

She was hired as a housekeeper 15 years ago by the Aveda Lifestyle salon. Now, as CEO, she has the opportunity to follow her muse, with co-owner Sandy Francis’ support, to continually enhance Veda’s services.

“My passion for people and service motivated me to work my way up to COO and part-owner of Veda,” she said. “Even with years of experience in the industry, I’m always looking for new ideas to give our guests an outstanding experience. For us, it’s about collecting and passing on knowledge about life — and how to live it well.”

Veda participated in the Greenie Awards in April. The fashion show event raised more than $27,000 for the Catamount Institute, which promotes sustainability in the Pikes Peak region.

“Their mission is to inspire ecological stewardship through research, education and leadership,” Perkins said. “One of the programs that touched our hearts the most was their award-winning Young Environmental Stewards or the ‘YES Club.’ This program was developed to teach disadvantaged youth about leadership, ecology and technology.”

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Such community involvement represents a natural extension of Perkins’ quality-of-life mantra.

“By understanding how our senses interact with the elements of nature, we can learn to achieve the balance that leads to physical health and emotional well-being,” she said.