Over the course of Jim‘s highly accomplished career, he has founded four and developed five successful hair care companies, netting over $1.2 billion in combined retail sales – Sebring®, Markham®, ABBA®, PureOlogy® and ColorProof®.
With each success, the Markham name has become synonymous with authentic, quality, high-performance products that serve as an industry standard. Jim is best known for pioneering sulfate-free, salt-free products and creating the luxury color care category, and he continues making his mark as the acclaimed, best-selling author of Big Lucky: Serial Entrepreneur Jim Markham’s Secret Formula for Success.
Jim’s perseverance, ability to overcome odds, business acumen and “made to win” mentality inspired his stirring memoir/business self-help book that provides a gripping and authentic portrayal of his rises and falls while building an empire. Big Lucky triumphantly explores the art of dealing with rejection, winning and losing, and provides readers the inspiration to seize their moment. Through his life-proven 22 ingredients for success, Jim provides readers the tools they need to overcome obstacles so they can also become big lucky. This life-changing page-turner is an Amazon.com best-seller and was featured as Audible’s #1 new release.
His path to success wasn’t foregone, obvious or easy. Married at 15 with a child, Jim Markham began his career as a barber as a means to support his young family. His undeniable ambition led him to California to meet with celebrity stylist Jay Sebring, an encounter that resulted in a lasting and important partnership. Jim became a Sebring distributor, Jay’s protégé and eventual successor, taking over the Sebring business following Jay’s untimely death as a result of the Manson murders. As a savvy celebrity stylist, Jim’s client list grew to include stars such as Paul Newman, Steve McQueen, Johnny Carson, Frank Sinatra, and Robert Redford. Jim quickly found that he had a gift for product development and for detecting needs in the market. His entrepreneurial spirit drove him to create companies that delivered innovative products to meet those needs, including being first-to-market with natural-based, 100% vegan, cruelty-free, carcinogen-free, premium, color-protecting haircare formulas.
As a testament to his success, Jim has been recognized time and time again for business excellence, winning prestigious awards such as the 2019 Intercoiffure Lifetime Achievement Icon Award and the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year for consumer retail products. He was inducted into the Ernst & Young Hall of Fame and the Professional Beauty Association’s (PBA) North American Hairstyling Awards (NAHA) Hall of Leaders, where he was acknowledged for his outstanding and lifelong achievements within the industry. Other previous awards include Orange County Business Journal Entrepreneur of the Year, Independent Cosmetic Manufacturers & Distributors (ICMAD) Cosmetic Innovator of the Year and Beauty Industry West Entrepreneur of the Year.
In addition, Jim and his wife, Cheryl, believe strongly in supporting philanthropic causes and giving back to the community. Over the years, they have supported numerous charitable organizations, including Habitat for Humanity, National Ovarian Cancer Coalition (NOCC), Serious Fun Children’s Network and City of Hope. Most notably, Jim and Cheryl were honored with the City of Hope Spirit of Life® Award, the organization’s most prestigious honor, in recognition of their philanthropic and business achievements.
As the Spirit of Life honorees, they raised over $1.3 million for City of Hope’s cancer research and treatment programs. Jim and Cheryl continue to broaden the spectrum of the ways they can give back to make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate.
Jim’s other accomplishments include serving as a technical consultant for Quentin Tarantino’s blockbuster film Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. Jim has been featured on CNBC, Fox Business News and Extra! as well as in OC Business Journal, Authority Magazine and WWD, to name a few.