About Kezner Consulting Group

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Kezner Consulting is a team of industry professionals that have been at the forefront of the hospitality industry for decades.  As a company we help transform ideas into thriving ventures. Our wide-ranging services encompass financial planning, creation of operating procedures, operational assessment and improvement, design, project management, branding, marketing, and comprehensive training. We cater to all hospitality businesses including restaurants, wineries and golf clubs.  We also support real estate developers with retail space curation and tenant selection.

Our approach is holistic and not limited to just tangible business facets. We deeply understand operations but want to also prioritize outstanding guest service and hospitality. 

With Kezner Consulting, you’re not merely hiring a consultant; you’re partnering with a firm committed to driving your vision to fruition, guaranteeing operational success and unmatched guest experiences.

Our History

Established in 2019, Kezner Consulting swiftly identified a pivotal opportunity to bridge the operational divide in the hospitality industry. Our primary aim was to equip emerging restaurant operators with the expertise and resources that would allow them to rival the operational achievements of larger restaurant groups. We also sought to empower small to mid-size entities with the tools and insights typically reserved for more mature companies. For the larger restaurant groups, our focus was to assist them in maintaining agility and ensuring that they could adeptly execute expansive projects.

Our reach has been both vast and varied. From intimate eateries to expansive chains, and from wineries to golf clubs and even national real estate developers, Kezner Consulting has made an indelible impact across diverse sectors. Our portfolio showcases collaborations from the Bahamas and Florida to Oregon, North and South Carolina, Michigan, Texas, California, Idaho, and, of course, our home state of Washington.

Each successive year has witnessed us broadening our suite of services, attuning ourselves to the dynamic needs of the industry. At the core of our culture is a profound passion for hospitality. This isn’t just limited to the services we offer but guides our client relationships. At Kezner Consulting, our dedication is unwavering, and we are deeply committed to going above and beyond in our quest to ensure our clients’ success.

Meet Our Team

Dan Kezner

President

Dan Kezner has spent the last 30 years working and consulting in restaurants and other guest service businesses.  Throughout his career, Dan has opened over 20 restaurants ranging from regional counter service concepts to upscale wine bars.  Dan has consulted on projects including grocery store startups, winery tasting room operations, corporate project management, and resort upgrades.    

Dan spent 16 years at Heavy Restaurant Group where he finished his tour of duty as Chief Restaurant Officer overseeing 13 concepts and 700+ employees.  Dan also spent 8 years working in and managing restaurant kitchens. 

The experience Dan has in expansion and the implementation of strategic policies and procedures will support your business’s emergence, growth and successful operations. Dan is passionate about great guest service, positive leadership, team development, and fantastic food. He has a proven track record of helping businesses create and nurture a productive and progressive company culture.

View Dan’s Resume

Leigha Bone

Sr. Operations Consultant   

With an illustrious 25-year career in the hospitality sector, Leigha Bone is a distinguished operational expert celebrated for her transformative impact on maximizing profitability and improving operational performance and efficiency within food and beverage establishments. From her beginnings as a General Manager to her current role as Sr. Consultant for Kezner Consulting, Leigha’s journey is a testament to her operational acumen and strategic prowess.

Having navigated roles as a Director of Operations for Beecher’s Cheese and as a Strategic Program Manager for Anheuser Busch (AB-InBev), Leigha’s legacy is one of elevating guest experiences, streamlining workflows, and orchestrating successful ventures through her profound understanding of operations and her unwavering commitment to operational excellence. 

Casey Robison

Spirits Consultant 

With a two-decade career, Casey’s imprint on the industry is undeniable. A former Beverage Director at Heavy Restaurant Group, he led strategic excellence across ten multi-million-dollar establishments. His vision brought life to eight successful openings, each with distinct identities. He also enjoyed a pivotal two-year tenure as a Key Account Manager at Pernod Ricard. In this capacity, he orchestrated the education, training, and advocacy efforts for 16 boutique liquor brands across an extensive network of accounts within the Seattle metro area.

Casey’s devotion to the industry is evident in his event organization, seminars, mentorship, and media features. His journey has been characterized by a relentless pursuit of excellence, strategic thinking, and a deep understanding of the dynamics that drive success in diverse sectors. As a consultant at Kezner Consulting, he shapes success for restaurant and bar owners with unwavering passion and strategic prowess.  

Harry Mills

Culinary Consultant

Harry’s career began as a dishwasher at Red Robin when he was 16. After cooking all the way through high school and college at UW, Harry decided to enroll in culinary school, and was part of the very first graduating class from the Art Institute of Seattle’s School of Culinary Arts. After a few years working in the industry as a sous chef, he returned to the Art Institute of Seattle as a Chef Instructor and taught there for seven wonderful years. After leaving the Art Institute, Harry began a 13-year tenure as the Chef and Culinary Director of Heavy Restaurant Group.

Recently, he served as the System Director of Culinary for Providence Health. He managed 45 hospital foodservice accounts across six states. After almost 30 years in professional cooking, Harry brings a wealth of knowledge and energy about food to Kezner Consulting. 

Chris Horn

Beverage Consultant

Chris has spent more than 30 years in the restaurant business and is currently the beverage director for the Heavy Restaurant Group based in Seattle. He fell in love with wine while bussing tables at an Italian restaurant shortly after college, and never looked back. In 2006, he opened Purple Café & Wine Bar as wine director, and now in his current role, he writes the wine lists for eight restaurants.

Chris received the Walter Clore Award in 2019, is a former Washington State Sommelier of the Year, Seattle Magazine Sommelier of the Year, and co-author of ‘Cook + Cork: A Chef and a Sommelier Spill the Secrets of Food and Wine Pairing. 

Partners

Hinge Studio

Hinge Studio, founded by Kate Cudney, is driven by a deep-rooted appreciation for repurposing and revitalizing old structures, drawing inspiration from the beautiful patinas and histories they carry. Stemming from a love for the character of aging buildings, Hinge has dedicated itself to preserving the essence of these structures while adapting them to modern needs. Over a decade, their team has expanded its scope, merging aesthetics with function, and ensuring that spaces are not just beautifully designed but also resonate with the people who inhabit them. Kezner Consulting holds Hinge Studio in high regard and is confident in their exemplary ability to design exceptional restaurants.

BMDC

BMDC, headquartered in Seattle, stands out as a premier general contractor and interior design firm. Established by Todd McHugh with extensive construction expertise, BMDC specializes in transforming both empty shells and existing spaces into exceptional restaurants. Their commitment to early client engagement ensures efficient, cost-effective outcomes, and their leadership’s direct involvement guarantees consistent quality. Having collaborated on multiple projects, Kezner Consulting wholeheartedly endorses BMDC for their exemplary work in restaurant construction and remodeling.

CMA

CMA Restaurant Supply and Design is a multi-talented firm specializing in quality food service design, competitive equipment procurement and expert installation capabilities. Their many years of being involved in diverse types of projects has given them the hands-on skills needed to create each unique project in a highly professional fashion.  Kezner Consulting has worked on countless projects with CMA’s team.  They have delivered time and again helping restaurants get open on time and on budget with a kitchen design that will stand the test of time.  

Anne Marie & Erika Koehler

Anne Marie Koehler and Erika Koehler, both Senior Managing Directors at Newmark’s Seattle office, have established themselves as leading figures in the realm of retail brokerage services. With Anne Marie’s 14 years in urban retail and affiliations with renowned establishments like JLL, CBRE. coupled with insights from her family’s development background, she brings a nuanced understanding of both landlord and tenant needs. 

Erika, with over two decades in commercial real estate, boasts an impressive track record in urban retail and mixed-use developments. Her tenure with esteemed companies like JLL, CBRE, and significant projects like 400 Fairview South Lake Union, showcases her depth of knowledge and broad perspective. Together, their combined expertise ensures that businesses are positioned in optimal locations to thrive. Kezner Consulting wholeheartedly endorses Anne Marie and Erika for their unparalleled real estate knowledge, strategic advice, and their dedication to aligning businesses with spaces conducive to their success.

Our Values

Gratitude is the foundation of living your best life and running your best business.  We should all be fueled by the gratitude we feel that our guest, (clients or customers) choose us, that we have the skills and ability to serve and that we work within a stellar team.   

Hospitality is not something that is turned on and off.  It is a way of living. It is confidently holding the door and saying hello to a stranger.  Hospitality is an intuitive sixth sense of anticipating the needs of the people around you and a desire to make their experience and life better.  Within an organization, hospitality should be the driving force for guest satisfaction, employee communication and team leadership.  

Quality –  We believe a culture of quality to be an atmosphere in which employees follow quality guidelines, see teammates taking quality-focused actions and hear teammates talking about quality.  They must also feel an emphasis of quality from their leadership team.  This will ensure that everything from creating, purchasing, production, service and financials are completed in a way to minimize the ever sliming margin of error we all operate in.

Simple means easy to understand, easy to measure and the ability to easily describe the expectations.   Creating a clear path through the chaos of the real word is something we work and coach on every day.  It is a delicate balance of what services and products to offer before system overloads occur within the organization and the customer experience.    Finding that balance is the key to producing a workflow that can deliver on Gratitude, Hospitality and Quality and meet the needs of our employees and leadership.  

Equality in the workplace has two parts.  It is the act of ensuring that all individuals have equal opportunities to make the most of their lives and abilities within the organization.  Second is to promote an unwavering belief that no one’s life chances should be impacted by the way they born, where they were born, whether they have a disability or who and what they believe in. 

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Contact us today to schedule a consultation and take the first step toward a brighter future for your business. Your success is our business!

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