Meet Our Team
We look forward to grooming your pet! Meet our highly trained and experienced team that will provide love and care for your pet during their spa visit at Absolutely Pawfect Pet Styling.
Our owner, Samantha Palya, has been in the grooming industry for more than 25 years. At 17, she attended Great Lakes Academy of Professional Pet Styling where she graduated and later became a grooming instructor. Samantha has competed in grooming competitions across the country with accomplishments ranging from multiple placements to Best in Show and Best Groomer of the Division. In October 2000, at only 21 years old, Samantha opened Absolutely Pawfect Pet Styling. Samantha has had the privilege of working with pet grooming industry leaders who are responsible for many of the advancements in the industry today. One of Samantha’s goals is to share the knowledge she has gained from these leaders and the passion she has for grooming with others to keep the industry growing.
Brooke, Enrichment Stylist
Brooke joined the grooming industry in May 2012 and started as a bather at Absolutely Pawfect Pet Styling in March 2018. She completed her apprenticeship in November 2019. She has a bachelor’s degree in illustration and graphic design and hopes to specialize in grooming Terriers and double coated breeds. Her favorite breed to groom are Terriers. Her favorite thing about grooming is working with dogs on a daily basis. She owns a Bunny named Izzy and her favorite breed of dogs are the Great Pyrneese. She is certified in CPR & First Aid and Salon Sanitation. When Brooke isn't grooming pets, she can be found playing video games and painting.
Alicia, Enrichment Stylist
Alicia joined the grooming industry in 2015 and started as a groomer at Absolutely Pawfect Pet Styling in April 2019. She specializes in grooming special needs dogs. Her favorite breed to groom are Bichons while her favorite breed is the Akita Uno. She enjoys making dogs feel better throughout the grooming process. She loves giving high quality service that adds to the overall well-being of the dog. She owns four dogs - a Bichon named Kira, a Shiba Uno named Kitsu, a Shikoku named Renki and a Japanese Akita named Clementine. She also owns cats, lizards, chinchillas and chickens! Alicia is certified in CPR & First Aid, Salon Sanitation, and Special Handling and Special Needs. Outside of grooming her favorite thing to do is to spend time with her animals.
Cara, Enrichment Stylist
Cara joined the grooming industry in July 2014 and started as a bather and apprentice at Absolutely Pawfect Pet Styling in July 2016. She completed her apprenticeship in March 2017. Cara has a bachelor’s degree in music education and plans on becoming a Nationally Certified Master Groomer and a Certified Feline Master Groomer by the end of 2025. She loves to compete and would love to earn a Best in Show title one day. Her favorite breed of dogs to groom are Poodles and she loves anything different and challenging while grooming. She loves adding color and doing fun fusion styles! She also loves grooming cats. Cara finds grooming cats calming and she just loves that! Cara holds certifications in CPR & First Aid, Salon Sanitation, Hair and Skin Science, Senior Dogs Handling, Special Needs Handling, Super Styling Sessions Poodle Grooming, Super Styling Sessions Long Legged Terriers Grooming, Feline Safety, and is an AKC S.A.F.E Certified Groomer. She won 2nd place in the St. Louis Groom Fest 2019 Rescue Dog Makeover.
Angela, Enrichment Specialist
Angela joined the grooming industry in 2020 and started as a bather at Absolutely Pawfect Pet Styling in May 2020. She will be attending Purdue University and majoring in Elementary Education. Her favorite breed to groom are German Shepherds. Angela's favorite thing about grooming is spending time with the dogs and talking to them because they don't talk back. Her favorite breed are Shar Peis. She owns a Pitbull named Boss. Outside of grooming Angela can be found playing softball and Color Guard.
Atheer, Apprentice Enrichment Stylist
Atheer joined Absolutely Pawfect Pet Styling in July 2020 as a bather and moved to an apprentice groomer in September 2020 and joined the grooming industry at the same time. During Atheer’s apprenticeship, she plans to complete her associates degree in Animal Science. With the career goal of working with animals in any capacity, Atheer hopes to compete in grooming competitions in the future. Atheer’s favorite dog breed is Corgi and favorite breed to groom are Poodles and Terriers. While grooming, she enjoys incorporating the science of hair and skin with the creative outlet of styling. When not grooming, Atheer can be found hanging out with friends and singing. Atheer also owns a cat named Sully.
Natalia, Enrichment Stylist
Natalia started as a bather at Absolutely Pawfect Pet Styling in June 2020 and began her apprenticeship in January 2021. She joined the grooming industry in 2020. In addition to becoming a groomer, she is currently attending cosmetology school and will graduate in 2022. Her future goals are to provide grooming to both pets and humans. Her favorite dog breeds are Australian Shepherds and Border Collies. Bichons are her favorite breed to groom. When grooming, she finds it incredibly satisfying when a dog comes in with dirty paws and leaves with nice clean paws! When she's not grooming, she is busy studying for cosmetology school.
Marie, Enrichment Specialist
Marie has been with Absolutely Pawfect Pet Styling since August 2018. She is currently attending school at Trinity Christian College and expects to graduate in 2023 with a bachelor’s degree in Business Management. Her favorite thing about her job is being able to meet so many different dogs and people. She loves getting to know our regular clients and building relationships with them. Her favorite dog breeds are Corgis, Shetland Sheepdogs and Bichons. She owns a Shetland Sheepdog named Koda and lives with her parents who have 2 Bichons, Charlie and Joey. Outside of work and school, she loves to ride horses, listen to music, and hangout with her family.
Lily, Enrichment Specialist
Lily started as a receptionist at Absolutely Pawfect Pet Styling in October 2009. Her goal in life is to be happy with whatever she does! Her favorite thing about her job is interacting with all of the clients and their pets. Her favorite breed of dogs are Pit Bulls especially her own Pit Bull named Boss. Outside of grooming her favorite thing to do is listensing to music.