Greet the Team
From my first days in the restaurant business, I have loved the pace, challenges and guest interaction of the hospitality business. From local restaurants in my hometown Arlington, TX to Chili’s in South Austin to the Four Seasons Hotel, Austin—professional, friendly guest service was always my focus.
An opportunity to join the Gourmet Gals & Guys (as it was known then) team in February 2000 as an event planner was just where I wanted all my experience to lead.
To purchase the locally renowned company with my sister, Cymbre, just two years later, really has led to some amazing times and learning experiences. Beginning with learning from leading industry pros already at GGG, to filling my contacts with amazing creative partners who can make any dream come true, to working with businesses whom we have done both grand openings and 25th anniversaries, to sharing some of the most personal family experiences—weddings, birthdays, anniversaries, life celebrations and more; working for and owning this company has given me more than most people can hope for in a career.
I look forward to sharing what our company can do for you and your special event. They are all so very SPECIAL.
SOME THINGS FEW KNOW ABOUT ME…
I always pick up scissors upside down.
I have a goal to spend two nights in every state park (with electricity) in Texas. Seven down, sixty to go!
I feel as though my career path has been driven by powers beyond me.
Throughout college, I worked at Southwest Texas State University’s (now Texas State) athletic ticket office and I helped execute not only all athletic events, but all special events held at the facilities. We hosted a George Strait concert fundraiser and one of the last Sam Kinison concerts.
After graduating with a Degree in Corporate Psychology with a Minor in Business Administration, I was promptly promoted to Athletic Ticket Manager at Southwest Texas State University where I continued with the athletic and special event production. The World Football League San Antonio Riders set their home in San Marcos and contracted me to be their Ticket/Facility Manager for the season.
I transitioned to the Four Seasons Hotel where I rapidly moved from “graveyard” PBX to Assistant to the Catering Director, Banquets Manager and Conference Service Manager. While at Four Seasons in Austin, I had the pleasure of working with many companies and individuals planning special events as well as coordinating off-site logistics and events.
The only professional conscious decision I’ve made was to partner with the purchase of Gourmet Gals Catering & Events in 2002, and it has been a blessing and adventure beyond words! We’ve been serving the catering needs of Central Texans for over 40 years. I’m very proud of our product and team. Our vendors, creative partners and staff are the backbone of our success. My strong points are logistics, order, and a passion for happy clients. I look at each event as a big puzzle with lots of pieces. At the close of an event, hopefully you get to see the end result of the details flawlessly pieced together to create a beautiful experience.
ANOTHER FACT ABOUT ME…
My first word was “Kitty” I love cats. I am a crazy cat lady and OWN it.
Former executive chef at Kenichi, Mark was raised in northern Ohio, where he was exposed to a style of cooking that fused unique global cultures and traditional American influences.
Taking his father’s advice, Mark joined the United States Marine Corps. It was there, while traveling the world, that Mark discovered his passion for cooking and finer foods. After his Honorable discharge, Mark began his work in the culinary world. While serving guests and interacting with them, Mark learned that food was something more than just a means to stay alive; it had the potential to deeply satisfy people on another level.
Mark began a serious culinary study under the tutelage of star chef, David Bull of the Driskill Grill. After 4 years, and working every station in the Grill and the 1886 Cafe, Mark left the Driskill and started at Whole Foods. It was at Whole Foods that Mark learned about organics, sustainability, local products, food artisans and managing 50 cooks. After a year there, Mark became sous-chef at Mansion at Judges Hill. Mark assisted in catering events, and managed a small, but determined group of cooks and dishwashers. In April of 2007, Mark left for Kenichi.
Throughout his culinary career, one constant has been Mark’s willingness to learn from, and even absorb his surroundings. It is the totality of these influences that make us proud to have Mark as an integral part of our team here at Gourmet Gals Catering & Events. Mark assists with menu planning and event management. He also executes and oversees our prep kitchen and our fantastic kitchen staff.
Mark has been fortunate to have traveled the world, having the opportunity to dine at some of its’ finer restaurants such as Bouchon, St. John and El Bulli.
I graduated from Texas State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a minor in Business Administration. I have always been an extremely people-oriented individual, which makes my work for Gourmet Gals seem less like “work” and more like an opportunity to make countless friends. As I have continued to gain experience in the service industry, I always look most forward to expanding my knowledge of food and beverage.
WHEN YOU DON’T SEE ME EVENT COORDINATING…
You can find me somewhere outside with my Border Collie mix , Boo!