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Barber Giving Back By Training Others, Including Ex-Cons, In Greenburgh

A video of Anthony Barton's barber training class features Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner getting a haircut.
A video of Anthony Barton's barber training class features Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner getting a haircut. Video Credit: Provided/Town of Greenburgh

GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Like hair, a positive story grows and spreads, until it is told one more time. And sometimes it warrants repeating.

That's true for Anthony Barton, a professional barber from White Plains who volunteers in Greenburgh, who tells and hears many stories as he cuts hair, but also has a fascinating life story of his own.

You may have read about Barton in Daily Voice in April.

Barton was featured in May in the Wall Street Journal's Urban Gardner column.

More recently, he's been interviewed by several television news stations including this report:

On Mondays and Wednesdays, Barton gives free haircuts at the Theodore Young Community Center in Greenburgh while training prospective barbers to become apprentices with the eventual goal of landing full-time work.

Barton, who owns a barbershop in White Plains, approached Greenburgh Supervisor Paul Feiner in October about starting the free training program.

He aims to teach unemployable men a new skill to find work. Many are former convicts whose criminal past makes it nearly impossible for them to land a job.

Barton can relate. He was raised by a mother addicted to cocaine and a father who was a heroin addict. As a teenager, he was sent to the Adolescent Reception and Detention Center on Rikers Island and by the age of 17, Barton was serving time at Coxsackie prison for robbery.

Barton says he benefited from enrolling in the state prison's barber program where he learned his current livelihood. Greenburgh's is the only barber training program in Westchester. During training sessions, free haircuts are offered to area residents on Mondays and Wednesdays from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Theodore Young Community Center, 32 Manhattan Ave. To schedule a free haircut, call Donel Dinkins at 914-310-8051.

"This is what the Community Center is all about,'' Feiner said. "Giving people opportunities and second chances. First chances."

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