Associated Barber College of San Diego’s purpose is to educate men and women in the field of barbering and cosmetology. Our mission is to instruct students in the barbering and cosmetology fields with hands-on techniques and classroom theory so that our graduates will be prepared to pass the California Barber or Cosmetology exam for an entry level position of employment in the beauty industry.

Dominick Nenna founded Associated Barber College in 1927. Mr. Joseph J. Roccoforte, the current owner and Director, attended Associated Barber College in 1960. In 1972, Mr. Roccoforte purchased Downtown LA Barber College and successfully directed his Los Angeles campus until 1989. Mr. and Mrs. Roccoforte purchased Associated Barber College in 2002. The Roccoforte’s have many years of experience in the barber industry. They have fathers, uncles, brothers, sons and even a grandfather that are (were) barbers. Education in our industry are Mr. and Mrs. Roccoforte’s passions. They have kept the barber traditions as part of the current curriculum. In 2022, we were approved by the Board of Barbering and Cosmetology to add a Cosmetology program to our school. We are extremely excited to complement our Barber Program with Cosmetology so that all prospective students can expand their knowledge and experience in this industry. As a student at Associated Barber College of San Diego, you will be prepared for the California State Board Barber and/or Cosmetology Exam while learning the traditional barber techniques and skills of Barbering and the current trends of Cosmetology.


Mr. Joseph J. Roccoforte – Director/CEO/CAO/Instructor/Barber

Mrs. Michelle M. B. Roccoforte – Associate Director/CFO/COO

Mrs. Martha Sanchez – Financial Aid Administrator

Ms. Marcelina Roccoforte – Director of Education

Mrs. Paula Alvarez – Admissions Administrator

Mrs. Alyssa Olivas  – Administrative Assistant


Instructors are recruited based on their theoretical knowledge, practical skills and experience in the barbering profession. Each instructor must have three years of experience in the working barber/cosmetology/health field to be qualified to teach. They are fully trained and experienced in all aspects of Barber Science and the Arts of Barbering, both theoretical and practical. Regular employed Faculty accommodate absences as Substitute Instructors. The instructional staff includes:

Mr. Joseph J. Roccoforte  Mr. Roccoforte was licensed in the State of California as a barber in 1962. He is an alumnus of Associated Barber College. He completed his barbering instructor course in 1973. Mr. Roccoforte is a second-generation barber in San Diego. He has owned a barber school since 1975. He specializes in theory classes.

Mr. Leandro Gan  Mr. Gan has been a licensed barber by the State of California since 1983. He has owned his own barber shop and currently owns a janitorial business. Mr. Gan has been an instructor since 1988 and specializes in haircutting and shaving. His specialty is to make our students employable in our industry after graduation. Mr. Gan speaks fluent Spanish and assists our students with Spanish speaking clientele.

Mr. Nicholas Cummings  Mr. Cummings is a licensed Barber and is an alumnus of our school. His strengths in barbering include the passion to share his talent to each student. Mr. Cummings is also an MMA fighter who is dedicated to his sport and passion of barbering. His strength is his discipline, and he loves to teach his passion.

Mr. Sherwin Mora  Mr. Mora is a State Licensed Barber and an alumnus or our school. Mr. Mora completed his cosmetology training at Bay Vista Beauty school in 2002. Mr. Mora worked as a Cosmetologist for three years and then joined the United States Navy where he served our country as a Corpsman for eight years. Mr. Mora’s specialty is the theory education of our trade.

Ms. Dee Dee Rodriguez – Ms. Rodriguez is a licensed Barber and Cosmetologist in the State of California and is an alumnus of our school.  She has been in our industry since 2011.  Her strengths on our education team include the chemical services that are included in the scope of barbering and her ability to teach shear work.  Ms. Rodriguez is the lead Educator for the Cosmetology program and she loves making learning fun.

Ms. Shellynn McColl – Ms. McColl is dually licensed in the state of California as a cosmetologist and a barber.  Ms. McColl also has her cosmetology license in Nevada.  She is alumni at our school and specializes in theory and chemical services.   Ms. McColl enjoys sharing her knowledge in chemistry, anatomy, electricity and pH as well.  She has worked in our industry since 2007 and owns her own barber shop. Her continuing education includes Milady, Pivot Point, Pravana, Wella, Schwarzkopf and Goldwell, Redken, Brazillian Blowout, Keratin Complex.

Mr. Ryan Martinez – Mr. Martinez is alumnus from our school. He graduated in 2019. Mr. Martinez is a Veteran of the Marine Corp. He is licensed in California and Texas. His specialty is all facets of barbering but especially building a clientele in a tough economy.

Mr. Erick (Popeye) Valdez – Mr. Valdez is alumus from our school. He graduated in 2020. Mr. Valdez excels in every aspect of barbering. His passion to teach others our trade comes from heritage in barbering. Popeye is amazing with his soft and gentle style of teaching.

Ms. Natalie Arellano – Ms.Natalie (Pinky) is a licensed Barber and is very well versed in this industry. Ms.Pinky prides herself in her passion for cutting hair as well as her drive and dedication to each and every student to get the best and most out of their education. Her specialty is education that prepares the student for employment in a fast-paced environment.  Ms.Pinky is an award-winning Barber and has been recognized for multiple accomplishments in our industry.

Ms. Melissa Garcia – Ms. Melissa is a licensed barber and is alumnus of our school. Ms. Melissa strengths are in our theory classroom as well on our practical floor. Ms. Melissa provides our students with a creative learning experience that is unlike any other. Ms. Melissa is always available to provide our students with one-on-one learning to make their experience more valuable. Ms. Melissa also has a background in makeup and artistry, working for Morphie and Mac as a makeup artist.

Ms. Marcelina Roccoforte – Ms. Lena is a fourth-generation barber enjoying her career in the family business.  Born and raised in San Diego, she attended Aveda Cosmetology school in Georgia to start her career.  Ms. Lena couldn’t deny the passion in her blood so she moved back to California to attend our school to receive her California barber license.  Alumus of our school she has furthered her education in RedKen, Pulpriot.  She is an educator with a full barber and cosmetology background.  Ms. Lena enjoys color, woman’s cutting and styling.  Her passion for teaching comes from her grandfather and her rewards are changing lives, one student at a time with a state license.

Ms. Kayla Cardoza – Ms. Kayla (Kae) is a licensed Barber in California and a licensed Cosmetologist in California and Florida.  Ms. Kae prides herself as a Master Stylist, Color Consultant, Headliner Stylist.  Ms. Kae currently works in a big named salon as a manager and shift leader.  Her passion for teaching comes with experience not only the beauty and wellness industry with cutting and color but also in management and day to day operation of a barber/cosmetology shop.  Ms. Kae is very detail oriented and loves to take her students to the highest of education.