The following bio was posted on candidate Farouk Shami's campaign Web site:
Farouk Shami came to America in 1965 with $71 in his pocket and through determination achieved the American dream. He is the Founder and Chairman of Farouk Systems, Inc. a multinational corporation that manufactures the world renowned brands BioSilk and CHI. These lines are currently sold in 106 countries which has given Farouk a unique perspective on global business and how to succeed in the 21st century. As an entrepreneur, educator, employer, manufacturer, and problem solver Farouk has talents that no one running for Governor, including the incumbent, can match.
Farouk's story begins more than 44 years ago when he came to the United States on a scholarship. Originally, he intended to follow in his father's footsteps and pursue a career in Education. While enrolled, he began working part time as a hairdresser and discovered his true calling when he became a salon owner. Being an entrepreneur and small business owner gave Farouk an opportunity to create better, more efficient tools to perfect his craft. In 1986, he enjoyed a major breakthrough, the first of many, when he invented the first ammonia-free hair lightener and coloring system. From that moment, Farouk’s mission became enviroment, education and ethics, creating a company that is environmentally responsible, promoting education and adhering to the highest ethical standards. It is how Farouk lives his life and the quality of the products that his company makes reflects his passion for perfection.
What has followed is a truly American success story with the invention of the CHI line of ceramic thermal tools, hairdryers with low EMF (electromagnetic fields) and a line of hair tools that features nano silver, which eliminates up to 650 forms of bacteria, making salons healthier for customers and stylists.
In December 2007, Farouk made one of the riskiest decisions of his career when he shifted his manufacturing to Texas. By July 2009, the CHI USA plant in Houston was complete. He also made the long term business decision to partner with factories all over Texas, in order to create jobs all over the state. Farouk is a brilliant businessman who has done what many said was impossible, manufacturing high quality products in America. Farouk also has three ranches in Texas. He planted 10,000 olive trees at his ranch in Uvalde and uses them as ingredients for the CHI Organics line.
As a humanitarian who fervently believes that generosity is repaid many-fold, Farouk has donated to numerous charities and organizations worldwide without making it public knowledge. After September 11th, Farouk went to New York to personally help those who were affected by the tragedy, especially his fellow hairdressers. After Hurricane Katrina and Rita, he donated millions to the shelters set up in Houston to provide for our friends and neighbors. When Galveston and Houston were devastated by Hurricane Ike, he responded immediately by giving care packages to his employees and partnered with the City of Galveston, sending truckloads of hygiene products they lacked. Farouk and his business partner, John McCall, demonstrated their commitment to ending childhood diabetes by creating a research center at the City of Hope in California in memory of his father, Sheik Mohammed Shami. He also built a school in honor of this father to educate the young women of Palestine in the sciences.
Farouk has received numerous awards, including Entrepreneur of the Year and, on behalf of Farouk Systems, the Apollo Green Award for bringing jobs back to America. Farouk became politically engaged when Barack Obama ran for President. He felt hope for the future and for the first time believed positive change was really possible. Farouk wants to lead the Texas Democratic Party into the future as their candidate for Governor and wants to help use his talent and experience as a successful businessman to make positive change a reality for everybody in Texas.
Click here for more info on Farouk Shami from his campaign Web site.