Jules E. Bernfeld, 81, a retired hair stylist and business executive who had owned and operated a chain of hair-styling salons and beauty schools, died of cancer March 6 at Alexandria Hospital. He lived in Alexandria.

In 1963, The Washington Post wrote a profile of Mr. Bernfeld (known to his customers as "Mr. Jules") and his business. He had opened his first beauty salon in Washington with a $4,100 GI loan. By 1963, his business had grown to three corporations that did $1.5 million in business and included 14 beauty salons, five beauty schools and three barbershops.

The organization stretched from Petersburg, Va., to Baltimore and eventually grew to 42 salons and 12 beauty schools. Mr. Bernfeld closed his last store, in Annapolis, and retired in 1995.

Mr. Bernfeld, a New York native, settled in Washington after Army service in World War II. He was a founder of the nonprofit Institute Against Violence. He worked to establish an international day of non-violence. He lobbied the United Nations and wrote letters to newspapers advocating non-violence.

Mr. Bernfeld also had been a consultant on Middle East questions to then-Sen. Hubert H. Humphrey (D-Minn.). He had been active in Sen. C. Estes Kefauver's (Tenn.) unsuccessful quest for the 1956 Democratic presidential nomination.

His first wife, Louise R. Bernfeld, died in 1995.

Survivors include his wife, the former Patricia Dolan, of Alexandria; two children from his first marriage, Larry Bernfeld of Alexandria and Suzanne Christenbury of Knoxville, Tenn.; a stepson, Anthony Dolan of Sandston, Va.; a sister, Edith Shacknow of New Jersey; and three grandsons.