Chris Jackson: Academy President

Christopher Jackson has been involved in dog grooming since he started as a bather at the age of 12. It started as a hobby that made him some extra money, but he found that he loved it so much that he decided to make it a career; one that he still enjoys today. Aside from grooming, Chris has worked with dogs in several capacities, having experience in both dog training and as a vet assistant.

By the time he was 18, he became a Salon Manager for various Petco stores before moving on to Petsmart. There, he worked as an instructor training and certifying people in the art of dog grooming for nearly a decade. During his time with Petsmart, he eventually earned the recognition as one of the top 3 Academy Instructors AND Salon managers for the entire company. His photo can be seen in any Petsmart store in the country!

Throughout his career, Chris has managed over 15 salons all over California for companies both large and small. He has also owned a mobile grooming business as well as his own salon in Hollywood, California. He regularly shows Standard Poodles and Springer Spaniels in grooming competitions and has won many awards, including Top 20 in the World at Super Zoo in Las Vegas, Nevada, which showcases only the best dog groomers in the world.

I’ve also been blessed to work with some of the best groomers and pet professionals in the industry, and I look forward to sharing my knowledge with you!” – Christopher Jackson

Jessica Johnson, CFMG: Vice-President

Jessica is WCGA’s Co-Owner and resident cat specialist, currently working professionally as a Feline and Canine behaviorist, Certified Feline Master Groomer (CFMG) and Lead Instructor at WCGA.

She started training dogs professionally in 2005 at Petco before forming her own training business in 2006, Dog Sense, LLC, which is still in operation today. While Jessica was running her business, she attended school at Cal Poly Pomona’s College of Agriculture where she worked with livestock and domestic animals until she graduated in 2012 with her Bachelor’s Degree in Animal Science- Pre-Veterinary.

In 2015, Jessica started moving into feline behavior, and obtained her Advanced Certified Feline Training & Behavior Specialist (ACFTBS) certification through Animal Behavior Institute in 2017. In August of 2016, Jessica received her certification as a Certified Feline Master Groomer (CFMG) from the National Cat Groomers Institute of America and is one of only 280 CFMGs in the entire WORLD! She is trained to the highest of standards in feline health, behavior, breeds, colors and handling to ensure the best life possible for the cats (and owners) that she works with.

In addition to her animal behavior and grooming work, Jessica is very active in animal rescue, having fostered orphaned kittens, puppies and dogs for various shelters and rescues, and volunteering with organizations such as Wings of Rescue, Fix Nation, the Marine Mammal Care Center, the National Disaster Search and Rescue Dog Foundation, the Pasadena Humane Society, Downey Animal Care & Control, West Side German Shepherd Rescue, Upland Animal Shelter, Sante D’or Foundation, and Found Animals Foundation. 

Jessica has appeared on numerous tv shows such as “My Cat From Hell” with Jackson Galaxy and Kate Benjamin of Hauspanther, “Shelter Me” on PBS, and “The All American Dog Rescue Celebration” Thanksgiving Day Special on Fox 11. WCGA is very lucky and proud to have Jessica teaching the next generation of dog and cat groomers!

Huber Pineda, Academy Instructor

Huber Pineda was born in Guatemala and started showing dogs with his grandfather when he was 8 years old. It was during this time when he began learning how to groom a wide variety of show dogs to breed standard, eventually earning several awards in Junior Showmanship. When he grew up, he came to the United States in 1989 and began working for Petco in 1990. He grew his salon to achieve recognition as the second highest volume store on the West Coast, where it steadily held that title for 9 years.

After his time at Petco, Huber began grooming at a private salon, where he learned more about small business management and how to grow a successful business. In 2006 he left that salon and went to work for another private salon in Hollywood, CA, where he worked as a manager for several years. Huber then opened four successful grooming salons in Los Angeles, while working part-time at another private salon in Toluca Lake, CA.

In 2008 Huber applied to be on the second season of Animal Planet’s grooming competition show “Groomer Has It.” Out of 4,600 applicants, only 12 were chosen to appear on the show, including Huber. He then went on to win the entire competition, winning the distinguished title of Animal Planet’s “Groomer of the Year, 2009.” Aside from his time on “Groomer Has It,” Hubor has also appeared on “The Bachelor” on ABC and “Pretty Wild” on E Network. Most recently in 2020, Hubor appeared on HBO’s grooming competition show “Haute Dog,” and won the coveted first place “Best in Show” title.

After his time on “Groomer Has It,” Huber decided to return to groom at another private salon where he remained for several years until August of 2020, when he began working as an Academy Instructor at West Coast Grooming Academy.

Huber brings 42 years of pet grooming, instructing and salon management knowledge and experience to West Coast Grooming Academy. He is an asset to our company, our students, and to the grooming industry as a whole, and we are thrilled to have him on board. We hope that you enjoy learning from him and that you take advantage of all of the knowledge that he has to offer you. 

WHY US?

State of the Art Facilities

Our award-winning groomers are compassionate and professional, so you’ll know your pet is in good hands. Our campus facilities are built with the groomers and pet’s safety, comfort and sanitation in mind. 

Giving Back to Our Community

West Coast Grooming Academy is proud to announce our work with local animal rescue organizations and shelters. When you attend WCGA, you learn to groom and give back to the community by grooming adoptable pets, which helps them get adopted and into their forever homes.

Job Placement Assistance

After graduation, we offer Job placement assistance with companies like PetSmart and Petco, as well as private salons. We even offer internships to deserving students after graduation to allow you to have even more hands-on experience in a safe, familiar environment.