Steve Hooper

Steve Hooper

President

Steve is a native of the Pacific Northwest, having grown up in Redmond, and currently residing in Green Lake. He graduated from Colby College and spent his early career in Investment Banking in Seattle and Venture Capital in Boston. After graduating with his MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College, Steve decided to pursue his entrepreneurial passion, founding Kigo Kitchen and leading it as CEO from inception until its merger with ESR in 2019.

HOMETOWN

Born in Long Beach, CA. but moved to Seattle at 6 weeks old, so I call this home.

FIRST RESTAURANT JOB

Rolling and bagging burritos for Boloco in Boston, MA.

LAST RESTAURANT JOB

If all goes well over the next 40 years, this one - I couldn’t imagine loving my job more.

FAVORITE LATE NIGHT SNACK

Leftovers of whatever my wife has most recently cooked up.

RESTAURANT PET PEEVE

Hearing “this plate is REALLY hot” from a server - It always makes me worry it has been sitting under a heat lamp for 20+ minutes.

WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT SEATTLE?

The fact that our city is so integrated with the outdoors and is thus such an active region.  I love seeing people take advantage of the natural beauty all around us.

FAVORITE PLACE IN THE WORLD

There is a small stretch of coastline on the Northwest corner of the Big Island of Hawaii, called the Kohala Coast - it is my sanctuary.  The food is all local and fresh, you can know the name of your fishmonger and enjoy the best produce on the planet. There is no place like it in the world and I get there as often as life will allow to recharge.

CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT

My family, both immediate and extended.  They are the source of every great thing that has happened in my life.

WHAT'S ON THE DVR?

We’re currently WAAYYY too into Killing Eve.

WHAT'S ON THE NIGHTSTAND?

Bad Blood by John Carreyrou and Measure what Matters by John Doerr

WHAT'S ON THE IPOD?

I’m listening to a LOT of Casper Baby Pants recently, but usually under protest (usually…).

WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED?

Everything happens for a reason.  It can be very hard to see what that reason is at the time, but it inevitably reveals itself.  I’ve been following my passions and things that interest me for most of my life. I’ve been incredibly lucky along the way, but I’ve also had great mentors that have guided me along that journey.  I never could have imagined being in the position I hold today, but everything I’ve done has prepared me for what I’m doing now and I couldn’t be more thrilled.

Meet The Crew

  1. Ethan Stowell

    Ethan Stowell

    CEO & Founder

  2. Steve Hooper

    Steve Hooper

    President

  1. Sennen David

    Sennen David

    VP Marketing & Culture, Beverage Director

  2. Branden Karow

    Branden Karow

    VP Restaurant Operations

  3. Michael Pagana

    Michael Pagana

    VP Development

  4. Val Dixon

    Val Dixon

    VP Finance / CFO

  5. Sandy Smith

    Sandy Smith

    VP Administration

  6. Addam Buzzalini

    Addam Buzzalini

    Executive Chef

  7. Heather Poncet

    Heather Poncet

    Service Director

  8. Gary Silver

    Gary Silver

    Operations Director

  9. Mitch Wittenberg

    Mitch Wittenberg

    Systems Director

  10. Scarlet Keiser

    Scarlet Keiser

    Executive Assistant

  11. Phia McDonnell

    Phia McDonnell

    Events & Catering Manager

  12. Rachel Farley

    Rachel Farley

    Corporate Catering Director

  13. Alcena Plum

    Alcena Plum

    Manager

  14. Ally Reardon

    Ally Reardon

    Manager

  15. Alvin Go

    Alvin Go

    Manager

  16. Ashley Kim

    Ashley Kim

    Manager

  17. Bernadette Biela

    Bernadette Biela

    Operations Chef

  18. Caleb Floyd

    Caleb Floyd

    Manager

  19. Canara Rim

    Canara Rim

    Manager

  20. Christian Padilla

    Christian Padilla

    Sous Chef

  21. Cody Bellflower

    Cody Bellflower

    Chef

  22. Colt Lippincott

    Colt Lippincott

    Sous Chef

  23. Dionne Himmelfarb

    Dionne Himmelfarb

    Pastry Chef

  24. David Kim

    David Kim

    General Manager

  25. Donald Adams

    Donald Adams

    Chef

  26. Evan DeCarufel

    Evan DeCarufel

    Sous Chef

  27. Gabriel Hodges

    Gabriel Hodges

    Manager

  28. Jace Jorgensen

    Jace Jorgensen

    Chef

  29. Jeff DeWitt

    Jeff DeWitt

    Sous Chef

  30. Jessica Rudell

    Jessica Rudell

    Chef

  31. Joe Bee

    Joe Bee

    Manager

  32. John Lundahl

    John Lundahl

    Chef

  33. John Stone

    John Stone

    Sous Chef

  34. Jordan Moore

    Jordan Moore

    Sous Chef

  35. Kelsey Cline

    Kelsey Cline

    Sous Chef

  36. Kris Kalinczok

    Kris Kalinczok

    Chef

  37. Lacey Glatz

    Lacey Glatz

    Cafe Supervisor

  38. Marshall Nall

    Marshall Nall

    Pasta Wrangler

  39. Matthew Boudousquie

    Matthew Boudousquie

    Bar Manager

  40. Meg Posey

    Meg Posey

    Manager/Wine Director

  41. Michael Genardini

    Michael Genardini

    Chef

  42. Michael Gifford

    Michael Gifford

    Chef

  43. Nathan Witt

    Nathan Witt

    Sous Chef

  44. Nicole Matson

    Nicole Matson

    Chef

  45. Noah Zavatsky

    Noah Zavatsky

    Sous Chef

  46. Ricky Wyman

    Ricky Wyman

    General Manager

  47. Sara Peterson

    Sara Peterson

    Manager

  48. Ross Crifasi

    Ross Crifasi

    Manager

  49. Roger Harper

    Roger Harper

    Chef

  50. Sadie White

    Sadie White

    Chef

  51. Scott Siff

    Scott Siff

    Chef

  52. Steve Norkevicus

    Steve Norkevicus

    Sous Chef

  53. Taylor Johnson

    Taylor Johnson

    Chef

  54. Taylor Pagano

    Taylor Pagano

    Chef

  55. Thomas O'Donnell

    Thomas O'Donnell

    Sous Chef

  56. Travis Holder

    Travis Holder

    Sous Chef

  57. Tosh Warnack

    Tosh Warnack

    Sous Chef

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