The strength of a business as part of the bedrock of a community is tested and measured by the generations who have built upon it. Over the decades, customers became regulars and brought their children who, in turn, brought their children. And the wisdom and experience of owners has guided and inspired the upcoming leaders of the establishment.
Warren’s Barber Shop is one such institution. It first opened its doors in the mid-1940s in Jessup and then moved to Columbia on Snowden River Parkway and eventually settled in 2015 in Owen Brown Village Center. Regardless of its location, the barber shop has witnessed generations of men, teenage boys and children walk through its doors. “There are three reasons why (customers) come,” said Julius Warren Jr., the shop’s second owner and son of the first owner, Julius Warren Sr.
“No. 1, its location. No. 2, they can get their hair cut the way they want it cut, not the way the barber wants it cut. And No 3, they enjoy the barber shop because of the conversation and the camaraderie.” Julius Jr. and his father were committed to providing high-quality barbering that had the welcome advantage of increasing the self- respect of each man who sat in their chairs. Their passion also created a sense of family at the barber shop that has emboldened a new generation to continue the Warren legacy.
When he was in middle school, Clifford Douyon discovered the barber shop after he moved to Columbia from New York City. Julius Jr., owner at the time, recognized Clifford’s enthusiasm and talent and took him on as an apprentice. Clifford became the youngest master barber in Maryland when he earned his barber license in his senior year in high school.
Clifford went on to graduate from Morgan State University and work in robotic surgery at the University of Maryland, but his true vocation was barbering. He eventually befriended and trained Julius Jr.’s son, Julius III, nearly 10 years his junior, to become a barber. Julius Jr. was preparing to retire, and as he reflected on the outlook of his shop, he observed Clifford’s and Julius III’s dedication to the art of barbering and their plans for its future. As his father had done before him, Julius Jr. passed on the shop’s scissors and keys to the new generation of owners, Clifford and Julius III, in 2015, thereby continuing a legacy of service and fellowship in the area. The shop is located at 7284 Cradlerock Way and is open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.
Caption: Attention to detail and conversation punctuate visits and cuts at
Warren’s Barber Shop in Columbia.
by Therese Umerlik | Editor