Your Recruitment Professionals
We’ve assembled an incredibly talented team of the finest hospitality professionals to be of services to our clients and candidates. The totality of expertise within Horizon Hospitality is truly unmatched.
Senior Leadership Team
Scott Samuels | CEO & Founder
West Palm Beach, FL
Prior to beginning Horizon Hospitality in 1998, Scott held senior management and executive-level positions with hospitality industry leaders such as ClubCorp, Hilton Hotel Corporation, The Levy Restaurants, and Dean & Deluca. Scott is a graduate from the University of Wisconsin-Stout where he obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Hotel & Restaurant Management. He also attended the University of Paris and the Culinary Institute of America. Scott has conducted hundreds of recruiting and human resource workshops across the country. He is a frequent speaker at numerous industry conferences and is a published author in many prominent hospitality industry trade publications. Scott previously served as president of the board of directors for the Missouri & Kansas Search and Staffing Association. He was the prior board president of the Dream Factory of Kansas City and was recognized by Ingram’s Magazine as one of the top 40 under 40 business executives in Kansas City. Scott has been happily married to his wife, Maddy, for 28 years and enjoys being actively involved in the lives of their three children. He is a sports enthusiast and loves working out, snow skiing, and participating in recreational sports.
Leigh Ann Teubert | Vice President
Overland Park, KS (Corporate Headquarters)
Leigh Ann joined Horizon Hospitality in May of 2012. She began her career in sales after graduating with a degree in psychology from the University of Colorado. Her degree gives her a great understanding of people and has been beneficial in finding positive solutions in both sales and business environments. Leigh Ann has had a successful sales career with 10 years of it spent in the Insurance Industry. During this time, she was a regional sales manager and led her organization in recruiting insurance agents and managers. She has also spent time working in the hospitality industry in a variety of positions and venues. She understands the unique needs and challenges of the organizations in this industry and is excited to help our clients come up with the right recruiting solution for their needs. In Leigh Ann’s spare time, she enjoys watching her boys play sports, they keep her busy all year with soccer, basketball, and baseball. When she’s not on the sideline she loves to relax with a good book or she’s usually working on a sewing project of some kind.
Alissa Thomas | Managing Partner
With over 17 years in the hospitality industry and a degree from Cornell University in Hotel Administration, Alissa joined Horizon in 2014 to help grow the company in the Southwest. Her extensive leadership experience and career success is a result of exceptional communication skills and a competitive disposition. Alissa’s career path includes managerial positions in New York City, Las Vegas, Miami, and Southern California with Starwood International, China Grill Management, and Hillstone Restaurant Group. Her passion for service and hospitality makes her a great fit for developing relationships between clients and potential candidates. During her free time, Alissa spends time with her husband and young daughters in Scottsdale, Arizona. She is very focused on health and fitness and enjoys taking advantage of all that the Southwest has to offer.
Dana Baith | Managing Director
Dana joined Horizon Hospitality Associates in June of 2006 as a regional recruiter. Dana previously had a successful career in the hotel industry. Upon proving his abilities in hotel sales, he progressed toward management. He led the staff of a variety of properties from limited-service Hilton brands to independent, boutique-style, luxury hotels. These opportunities gave him experience in rebranding, opening, renovation, new construction, procedure development, marketing, and staff development. Dana approaches recruiting from the standpoint of helping people create a better life. Whether you are a client struggling to find the perfect candidate or a job seeker attempting to expand your career Dana, views each job opening as an opportunity to help make your life better. Having this goal and a strong competitive nature has made him one of our leading recruiters and earned him his current role in the company. Dana attended Western Kentucky University and lives in Overland Park, Kansas, where he enjoys life with his wife and two children. He plays an active role in the community, enjoys working in the yard, jogging, and coaching his children’s athletic teams.
Natalie Johnstone, PHR | Managing Director
Natalie has been an integral part of our recruiting team since 2013. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Hotel Restaurant Management from Kansas State University and began her career as Director of Food and Beverage at a privately-owned country club in the mountains of North Carolina. Natalie has also been successful as a banquet and tournament sales director for Eagle Golf management company and a banquet manager for a member-owned club in Kansas City. In addition, she earned a Master of Arts in Management degree with a Human Resource Specialization from Wayland Baptist University as well as a Professional Human Resource certification. At Horizon Hospitality, Natalie enjoys staying active in the hospitality industry while assisting others to expand their careers.
Recruiting & Client Relations Team
Kristin Page | Recruiting Manager
After graduating from UCF with a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Psychology, she began her career in Hospitality Management. After spending 6 years in the industry, she made a change and came on board with a multi-million-dollar furniture importer and auction house as their Director of Marketing. Spending almost a decade in marketing she and her husband relocated to beautiful West Palm Beach where she began her career in recruiting. Rising through the ranks she quickly became the firm’s #1 producer. In August of 2017, Kristin brought her extensive experience in leadership and fun-loving personality to the Horizon Hospitality team. Kristin is a native of South Florida who enjoys, traveling, water sports, skiing, and spending time with her husband and two children.
Adam Horner | Recruiting Manager
Prior to joining the Horizon Hospitality team in January 2017, Adam earned his Bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management from Kansas State University and spent the next 10+ years leading strong teams in upscale restaurants, private clubs and contract dining. This experience, along with a continued passion for the Hospitality industry, paved the way for Adam to develop into a highly successful recruiter. He has earned multiple promotions through high performance in his 4+ years with Horizon Hospitality and maintains a mission to do his very best in representing his candidates and clients with their best interests at heart. In his free time, Adam enjoys time with his wife, Jessica, and their three young children and the occasional round of golf.
Ryan Goff | Recruiting Manager
Ryan graduated from the University of Central Missouri in 2015 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Hotel and Restaurant Administration. He grew up working in the hospitality industry and has always had a passion for service. His uncle owned a restaurant that Ryan always enjoyed spending time at and helping out. Ryan has over 10 years of experience in the industry and has worked in many areas of both hotels and restaurants. His positivity, energy, and willingness to help others are what make him stand out. Ryan enjoys cooking and all things sports-related.
Heather-Rose Bradley | Senior Client Relations Manager
Heather-Rose comes to Horizon Hospitality after over a decade of experience in event management, sales, and business development in the events and hospitality industry. Heather-Rose’s love for helping others is what initially had her stumbling into this realm, to begin with, when she realized she had a talent for planning events. She left her career in insurance sales to pursue her passion, owning her own wedding planning business. Over time, she began to miss the “hive” mindset working solo, and made the transition into venue sales for a top event venue in Scottsdale. She then joined The Herb Box’s corporate office, where she had a number of roles throughout her tenure with the company, including group sales manager, catering sales manager, and business development manager. Heather-Rose is thrilled to take her industry knowledge and translate it into helping others find rewarding career paths. In her free time, she spends time with her fiancé and their young son, going to parks, festivals and live music events. She is a decent singer, a competitive fantasy football player, and a major foodie.
Todd Sandnes | Senior Client Relations Manager
Todd received his associate’s degree in food and beverage management from Johnson County Community College. Later, he returned to school and completed his bachelor’s degree in business from Baker University, earning a 4.0 GPA and Summa Cum Laude honors. He worked every position in a restaurant on his way to his future in management. Todd was the general manager for some of Kansas City’s best locally-owned restaurants before turning his efforts to recruiting. He enjoys using his vast experiences in the industry to help both clients and candidates find the ideal match! Todd enjoys spending time with his family, cooking, working out, and walking the dog.
James Nolan | Senior Hospitality Recruiter
James is pleased to be returning to Horizon Hospitality Associates after nearly 2 decades. He began his recruiting career at Horizon as a Regional Recruiter and has gone on to work as a Corporate Recruiter, interviewing thousands of applicants and hiring countless candidates in numerous industries. Before his return to recruiting, he served as a Seminar Trainer with Pryor Learning Solutions, delivering over 300 presentations on many different topics in all 50 states to thousands of attendees. With a B.A. in Communications, James also has worked as a professional actor across the United States and France where he studied during college in Cannes, performing 3 plays, entirely in French. His professional resume also includes being seen and heard in eLearning training videos, commercials, and voice-overs for many companies, nationally and locally. James is the proud father of 3 children, ages 25, 21, and 17.
Eric Stuertz | Senior Hospitality Recruiter
Eric was born, raised, and spent the majority of his life living in the Midwest before moving to Florida in 2013. He graduated from Eastern Illinois University with his MBA in 2006, juggling time between studies and playing on the Men’s Tennis Team. He initially started his career working in Information Technology, but quickly realized that his passion was working with people. Eric began his career in staffing and recruiting in early 2008. Eric has experienced a lot of success in his career developing great relationships with both candidates and clients. He has grown into management roles helping to train and mentor teams of recruiters and business development reps in multiple industries. He prides himself on meeting and exceeding expectations with anyone that he is working with. Eric brings this experience and drive with him to the Horizon team. In his spare time, he enjoys playing tennis and spending time with his wife and daughter.
Cara Weston | Senior Hospitality Recruiter
Cara graduated from the University of Nebraska in Lincoln in 2003. The majority of her career has always been in the hospitality industry. She was a valued team member at Jack Stack BBQ for 11 years serving in multiple managerial roles. After Jack Stack, Cara enjoyed a sales career as an Account Manager with Heartland Coca-Cola. She is very excited about her role with Horizon Hospitality in helping clients and candidates achieve success. Cara spends her free time with her husband, Aaron, and 3 children: Peyton, Cameron, and Jarrett. She loves to play volleyball and watching all her kids play sports.
Brittany ValVerde | Senior Client Relations Manager
Brittany joins Horizon Hospitality as a Client Relationship Manager with 12 years of hospitality experience, specializing in hotel sales and business development. Brittany graduated from New Mexico State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Hotel, Restaurant, and Tourism Management, and started her career as an opening sales manager for Hilton Garden Inn, and progressively moved through the Hilton portfolio of hotels, including Embassy Suites, Doubletree, Homewood Suites, and Hilton Hotels. During her time with Hilton Hotels Worldwide, Brittany received the Circle of Excellence designation, a designation reserved for the top performers within Hilton Hotels Worldwide. Brittany is excited to utilize her skills and passion for the Hospitality industry to assist in making sure great people are placed with great companies. In her free time, Brittany enjoys spending time with her husband Joe, and children Zach and Katie exploring the tranquil desert of West Phoenix.
Jaime Dolphin | Client Relations Manager
From a young age, Jaime was fascinated by the hospitality industry. She was able to fuel her passion for the industry by becoming a part of it at the young age of 14. Jaime held numerous positions at many well-known restaurants where she helped to improve guest experience, food and beverage operations, communications, and team morale. Jaime enjoys helping people achieve both their personal and professional goals. In her free time frequents new and trendy restaurants with her husband and enjoys taking her dogs to the beach.
Andrea Nelson | Hospitality Recruiter
Andrea has joined Horizon Hospitality after spending a combined 15 years in the professional world in sales, operations management, and corporate recruiting in multiple verticals. She graduated from Kansas State University with a Bachelor’s in Fine Arts and then spent the next 10 years traveling the northeastern US working in the photography industry. After spending 10 years on the East Coast, Andrea moved home to Kansas City and pivoted her career into corporate recruiting. While successful, she missed the client interactions, which is what led her back to join the professional search firm of Horizon Hospitality. In her free time, she plays sand volleyball even though she can’t quite keep up as she once could, enjoys fine wines and book clubs with friends, and has a fur baby with her husband Brian named Maho, named after the couple’s favorite beach in St. Maarten.
Max Marion | Hospitality Recruiter
Prior to joining the Horizon Hospitality team in late 2021, Max earned his bachelor’s degree from Florida State University then his MBA from Nova Southeastern Universities Huizenga School of business and Entrepreneurship. He spent the next 17+ years growing a South Florida casual dining concept from 4 units to more than 30 in his tenure there along with moving thru the ranks from AGM to Regional Director of Operations. He then went on to help start a boutique restaurant group as their VP of operations. This vast experience and plethora of industry knowledge and relationships led him to hospitality recruitment and where he works tirelessly in representing his candidates and clients. In his free time, Max prioritizes time with his wife, Adrienne, and their amazing 3-year-old son, Aris Cooper along with playing a little poker and golf.
Josh Allen | Associate Hospitality Recruiter
In 2015, Josh graduated from Kansas State University with a BS in Hotel and Restaurant Management and Gerontology. Prior to graduating Josh was deeply immersed in the hospitality industry cooking for friends and family. His first job working in a grocery store was where he developed his passion for the industry. He has a versatile background having worked in both front and heart of house operations in retirement communities, restaurants, and private clubs. His recent tenure was with Hallbrook Country Club starting as a dining room manager and progressing to Food and Beverage Director. During his time with Hallbrook, Josh created a strengthened culture with the FOH and BOH operations through several successful wine dinners and member-hosted events. Josh strives for excellence and works hard to build strong relationships with everyone he works with. Josh and his wife Kaitlyn love to travel and have visited more than 30 countries together. In his spare time, he loves to cook, make cocktails and play with his two dogs, Bailey and Stella.
Pat Dutcher | Associate Hospitality Recruiter
Pat studied psychology at Kansas State University before moving to the US Virgin Islands to become a professional Scuba Diver, in addition to earning her US Coast Guard Captain’s License. While there, she served as the Director of Operations for a local Diving Company with multiple retail outlets and associated with large hotels and resorts across the island. She then successfully pivoted to the spa industry for the next two decades, innovating and leading teams of up to 100 employees with great properties such as Ritz-Carlton, PGA National, and Marriott. Her passion for service and hospitality makes her a great fit for recruitment, by developing strong relationships between clients and candidates. Pat has been happily married to her husband Dave for nearly 20 years and enjoys time on the water with him in sunny South Florida.
Garrett Jordan | Associate Hospitality Recruiter
At 19 Garrett enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and served on an active duty and reserve capacity until 2013. He re-enlisted in 2018 in the US Navy Reserves and currently serves as a Hospital Corpsman Second Class. He has 10+ years of experience in the restaurant industry, working in QSR, fast casual, and casual dining restaurant formats. Garrett has always found his passion in developing strong teams with a close knit family culture in his restaurants. He enjoys his free time by taking his family to experience the outdoors through camping, hunting and fishing.
Ashley Intfen | Recruiting Specialist
As a native of Topeka, Ashley attended Washburn University to study Business Administration before coming to Kansas City. Since then, she’s worked in many industries and positions before transitioning to an office setting. She has enjoyed the last two years staying home with her son, enjoying his precious first years. She’s excited to get back to business at Horizon Hospitality! Ashley enjoys traveling when she can – Thailand has been the favorite destination so far, followed by the Hawaiian islands. In her free time, she loves spending time with her family and three dogs – especially in the outdoors! You can look for them at Deanna Rose or the Farmer’s Market on the weekends.
Caroline Barrett | Recruiting Specialist
Caroline began her hospitality career working front desk for Drury Inn while obtaining her Bachelor of Science in Parks, Recreation & Tourism at the University of Missouri-Columbia. She has 13 years of comprehensive hospitality experience including group and convention sales, convention services, and event planning for Marriott, Hyatt, Brown-Forman, and Explore St. Louis. After spending several years at home with her young daughter, she joined Horizon Hospitality in 2021. Caroline grew up in the Ozarks of southeast Missouri and still enjoys spending time on the area’s beautiful spring-fed rivers and lakes. In addition, she enjoys live music, spending time with her family and friends, and is a lover of all things Kansas City Chiefs and St. Louis Cardinals!
Bailey Swogger | Recruiting Specialist
Prior to joining Horizon Hospitality in June of 2021, Bailey graduated from Kansas State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management. Her passion for the industry was discovered when she worked her first serving job at age 15. Working various roles in the industry led to her passion of creating experiences for people that they would remember for a lifetime. From Dave and Busters to Aubrey Vineyards, Bailey has been able to develop new interests, hobbies and experiences through her work life and is excited to grow even more here at Horizon Hospitality!
Alex Sneegas | Marketing Manager
Alex is a born and bred Jayhawk, living in Lawrence since she was 11. She relocated to Overland Park after receiving her BA in Art History and Business from the University of Kansas. Alex spent 7 years creating first-class retail experiences with brands like Tommy Bahama and Coach. After stepping back from retail to start a family, she joined the Horizon Hospitality team in 2018. Alex is an avid traveler but enjoys exploring the Kansas City restaurant scene and home-improvement projects.
Hayley Whited | Payroll & Accounting Manager
Hayley is a native of Dallas, Texas. She received her B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin in 2011, graduating with the highest honors. Shortly after, she obtained her Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults at Teaching House in New York City. She taught at an English immersion school in Seoul, South Korea for two years and then moved to Cusco, Peru, continuing to teach and also singing in a local jazz band. Upon returning to Dallas, she rejoined the Kaye/Bassman International and Sanford Rose Associates team, where she had previously worked between graduating university and moving abroad. She began to work specifically with Horizon Hospitality, a member of the Sanford Rose network, in 2016. In her spare time, Hayley enjoys dancing salsa, eating chips and salsa, practicing yoga, reading mystery novels, and singing with a Dallas-based jazz band.