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Jul 12 2024
Jul 13 2024
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  • Garden of the Gods Resort Sunset

    Enriching by Nature

Garden of the Gods Mountain Overlay

The power of place.

Dream big.

Wellness for life.

Hospitality from the heart.

These values are core to our Garden of the Gods culture, and the foundation of what makes us great as a property and as a collective of passionate individuals. With service and support carefully crafted to meet the needs of each guest, our team of hospitality and health professionals will guide you through your stay with the utmost care and consideration — ensuring an experience that is uniquely tailored and seamless in every detail.


jan verweij

senior vice president of operations

Jan oversees operations for Rooms, Food & Beverage, Golf, Racquet Sports, Retail and Recreation.

Jan grew up in the Netherlands and graduated with an Associates Degree in Hospitality Management from the Mondrian Hotel and Management School in the Hague, Netherlands before completing a further four-year degree in International Hospitality Management from the renowned Les Roches Swiss School of Hotel Management in Switzerland.

Jan worked in London at the Royal Horse Guards Hotel before being recruited by Peninsula Hotels to come to the United States.  He joined the Forbes Five Star Flagship Penninsula Chicago which has 331 guest rooms, four dining options and a two-floor wellness spa and fitness operation on their 19th and 20th floors.  He worked to enhance and retain their Forbes Five Star designation over ten years in operations, beginning as a Management Trainee before moving into Front Desk and Housekeeping, along with a stint as their Interim Spa Manager before his last two and a half years as their Director of Front Office.

Under the umbrella of their ownership group, Hong Kong and Shanghai Hotels, Jan assisted in the opening of one of their new properties The Quail Lodge and Golf Club in Carmel by the Sea, California in 2013.  He was subsequently promoted there to oversee that hotel and club as their Resort Manager where he has successfully served for the last five years.  The Quail Lodge and Golf Club is an 850-acre facility with 93 guest rooms, two restaurants, an 18-hole championship golf course, tennis and pickleball, meeting spaces, spa, fitness and a large membership club.

Michael Garrow 3

michael garrow

Vice President of sales and marketing

With over thirty years of experience at notable and prestigious hotels and resorts across the country, Michael Garrow most recently held the position of Director of Sales at Meadowood in Napa California where he was responsible for all aspects of group and leisure sales. During his tenure over the past 9 years there, Michael helped to lead the property to a Triple Forbes Five-Star rating for the resort, spa and restaurant. Michael has also held several senior sales and marketing roles across the country including Director of Catering & Conference Services at Peaks Resort in Telluride, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Kingsmill Resort in Williamsburg, and Director of Sales and Marketing at Innisbrook Resort in Palm Harbor, Florida.

Michael, with wife Laura and their two fur babies 6 month old Black Lab Greta and 5 year old French Bulldog Rose, are thrilled to be back in Colorado, a place to which they have always wanted to return.

Melisa Lesperance

VICE PRESIDENT OF Human resources

Melisa Lesperance has served in the hospitality industry for a remarkable 20 years with a specific focus in human resources. She began her career at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, a AAA Five-Diamond resort. Lesperance joined the team in 1999 and continued to work positions over the span of eight years as a Front Desk Agent, Executive Assistant in Human Resources, Employment Coordinator, Learning Coach and Recruitment Specialist. She began her first leadership role thereafter as Employment Manager in 2007, a position she held for four years. In this role she directed recruitment efforts for the resort, conducted new hire orientations, initiated and administered all H-2B and J-1 Visa seasonal hires and assisted with team member relations.

As a result of her efforts, she was promoted to Benefits Manager, a position she held for two and a half years in which she managed team member benefits including medical, dental, 401K contributions, monthly benefit audits as well as arranged annual health fairs for employees and quarterly learning events for the property. In 2013, she was promoted to Assistant Director of Human Resources. During her eight years in this position, she led the Human Resources department and reported to the Regional Human Resources Director who oversaw multiple properties.

In her spare time, Lesperance likes to hike, read and chat with her family. Lesperance looks forward to exploring the surrounding scenery of Colorado Springs and is thrilled to be joining such a notable team at Garden of the Gods Resort and Club.

Meet the Team 2



Paul York has been with Garden of the Gods Resort and Club on multiple occasions starting in the late 90’s and rejoined the team in 2023.

Mr. York was previously employed for 15 years at the Five-Star/Five-Diamond Broadmoor Hotel in multiple capacities and outlets including Restaurant General Manager of Charle’s Court and Spencer’s Restaurant. Paul also was the Sommelier De Broadmoor and did on-site wine training for staff in addition to being a floor supervisor and wine steward at The Penrose Room. Paul York spent over 20 years as General Manager of The AAA Four-Diamond Cliff House at Pikes Peak, and the AAA Four-Diamond Cliff House Dining Room.

Meet Our Culinary Team 2



Chef Nate was previously Chef De Cuisine at the Forbes Four-Star Summit at the Five-Star/Five-Diamond Broadmoor Hotel and worked at other Broadmoor venues. Chef Gresham was originally a pioneer of southern cuisine from the Baton Rouge area. A former owner of multiple restaurants, Nathan was named a top 40 most influential people in Louisiana.

As Chef De Cuisine at Galatoires Restaurant in New Orleans, Chef Nate was awarded by The James Beard Foundation and performed at The James Beard House. Chef Nathan also was the chef at Augusta National for 6 years, and most recently the Executive Chef at Cherry Hills Country Club.

Nathan returns to the Garden of the Gods Resort leadership team after he previously served as the property’s Executive Sous Chef for more than two and a half years.


Chef Kelley McCann

chef kelley mccann

executive sous chef

Chef Kelley brings a wealth of experience to our property and has held positions with Five-Star/Five-Diamond Broadmoor Hotel and with Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia as Executive Chef.

As the Executive Chef at Galatoire’s Bistro in Louisiana, Kelley opened two locations in Baton Rouge. Kelley joined Garden of the Gods Resort and Club in April 2021 as Chef de Cuisine and was promoted to Resort Outlet Chef in March 2022.


John Douglas

john douglas

vice president of engineering

John oversees engineering functions of all our facilities, along with security and our IT team.

John is a graduate of the Virginia Military Institute in Lexington VA with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering and served as an officer in the United States Airforce.  After his stellar military career John worked in a variety of roles in commercial construction in Canada, Texas and Pennsylvania for fifteen years.

He began his career in the hospitality industry in 2009 and worked for Marriott as Director of Engineering for a total of eight years, culminating in him leading the Engineering team at the Ritz Carlton Dove Mountain in Arizona.  For five years he oversaw this flagship Ritz Carlton resort with its 250 rooms, luxury spa, 60,000 square feet of function space, five kitchens, three swimming pools, fitness center and extensive grounds.

John left Marriott to become the Corporate Director of Engineering for Stonebridge Companies, headquartered in Denver where he oversaw all engineering and facilities management for 65 hotels throughout the United States.  After four years he accepted a position with the luxury hotel and resort company Montage and opened the Montage Big Sky in Montana as their Director of Engineering, Security, and Information Technology where he has been for the last one and a half years.

Meet the Team 1

hailey curran


Hailey Curran started her career here at Garden of the Gods Resort and Club while working as a Spa Concierge. She transferred to our accounting department to work as our Accounts Payable Clerk while working on her accounting degree from UCCS. Throughout her time here, she has worked in Accounts Payable, Member Billing, Group Billing, Accounting Manager, Assistant Controller, and finally Controller. Hailey is passionate about learning and wants to help other leaders learn to better understand their financials and processes.

Hailey and her husband Michael have a little boy, James, and love to spend time outside – hiking, bouldering and camping being some of their favorites.

Michael J. Barber, MD, PHD, FACC, FHRS, FAHA, Medical Director at Garden of the Gods Resort & Club

Michael J. Barber, MD, PhD, FACC, FHRS, FAHA

Medical Director

The Strata Med’s clinical team is headed by board-certified Cardiologist, Internist, and Electrophysiologist, Michael J. Barber. He received his PhD with distinction in Physiology from Loyola University in Chicago. Dr. Barber attended the Indiana University School of Medicine where he received his MD, as well as the University of Virginia for residency, and Duke University for Cardiology and Electrophysiology fellowships.

As an expert in his field, Dr. Barber holds several medical fellowships and serves on advisory boards and committees within these professional organizations. He holds fellowships with the American College of Cardiology, the Heart Rhythm Society, and the American Heart Association. Dr. Barber’s areas of focus are cardiovascular disease, integrative cardiology, internal medicine, hypertension and lipid abnormalities, executive wellness, and IV nutritional therapies.

Tania McCorkle

Director of Wellness programming and development

Tania directs Strata Integrated Wellness and Spa’s spa and fitness operations and assist in integrating wellness experiences throughout all resort amenities and offerings, as well as supports the Strata Medical Team leadership. Tania has had a distinguished career in wellness resort destinations, executive spa leadership and athletic health club operations. As recent Spa Director at Canyon Ranch Wellness Resort, Tania oversaw all areas of the spa, including its programs, services, facilities, and staff. She was responsible for creating inspired, industry-leading spa and sports services centered around life-enhancing properties aligning with the resort’s wellness brand.

Before that, Tania held spa and fitness leadership roles at Omni Barton Creek Resort and Spa, Lakeway Resort and Spa, The Downtown Club in Houston, Club One Incorporated and The Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa. Tania, born in Cape Town, South Africa, is also a world-class athlete having been an award-winning member of the U.S. National World Netball Championship Team and an accomplished cyclist and triathlete.

Rich Parker, PGA, Director of Golf / Head Golf Professional at Garden of the Gods Resort & Club

Rich Parker, PGA

Director of Golf

Rich Parker is celebrating his tenth season at Kissing Camels and comes to us from Rocky Mount, North Carolina, where he was the Head Golf Professional at Benvenue Country Club. Along with substantial, professional golf management experience, he brings great enthusiasm and vision to the operation and tournament programs at Kissing Camels Golf Club. Rich and his wife are proud parents of three children.

steve blais

Director of agronomy

Serving the golf industry for a remarkable 22 years, Stephen Blais brings proven expertise in all levels of golf course projects including renovations, cultural practices, and administration. Most recently, Stephen held the position of Golf Course Superintendent here at Garden of the Gods Resort and Club where he was responsible for daily operations of the 27-hole Kissing Camels championship course and successfully integrated customized maintenance programs used to manage the course growth environment. Prior to this role, he began his tenure at the resort as Assistant Golf Course Superintendent. A Class A member of the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA), Stephen and his team developed and implemented new water management techniques and worked meticulously every day to ensure first class golf course conditions for for the resort.

Originally from New England, Stephen began his career as a Greenskeeper at the Quaboag Country Club in Monson, Massachusetts and upon moving to Colorado, became a Qualified Supervisor for the Colorado Department of Agriculture. In his role as Director of Agronomy, Stephen is responsible for the daily maintenance procedures designed to provide ongoing championship caliber playing conditions including the implementation of cultural programs with a focus on superior play and aesthetic characteristics for members and guests alike.

Stephen calls Colorado Springs his home (while being a Massachusetts sports fan at heart), and in his spare time enjoys family time with his wife and two children or outside skiing, golfing and hiking.

greg heartt

director of racquet sports

As a Florida native, Greg Heartt comes to us from Lake Butler, where he most recently served as Head Tennis Professional at the prestigious Isleworth Golf & Country Club. During his tenure, he developed the Junior and Men’s tennis programs from the beginning and advanced the Women’s program from three teams to 15. Heartt also served as USPTA Central Florida District President for the past six years, where he oversaw the development of 200+ certified professionals in the area through continual education and service within the industry. In 2019, Heartt received the USPTA National U-30 Professional of the Year award for his work in connecting Central Florida schools with certified tennis professionals.

Heartt picked up his first racquet at the age of three and was a highly ranked junior player throughout his adolescent career. He went on to play at the collegiate level for Florida Southern College in Lakeland, Florida where each season he played culminated in ‘Top 10’ Division II rankings.

With his proven expertise, Heartt will provide quality tennis instruction and enthusiasm to his new role as Director of Racquet Sports.

Michelle Johnson

Director of Retail

With over 24 years of retail experience from Fortune 500 publicly traded companies to small boutique shops to owning her own ecommerce business she brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the resort.

Most recently Michelle was Regional Director of Retail overseeing a $1.5 Million Dollar operation that included two Four Diamond Four Star Resorts, The Sheraton Bay Point Resort in Panama City Beach Florida and Horseshoe Bay Resort in Austin, Texas. These operations included three club houses, Tennis, Marina and two Retail Market outlets along with assisting hundreds of Club Members and all the Clubs Golf Tournaments with their specialty purchases.

When Michelle is not building new relationships and staying on top of all the new fashion trends you can find her spending time with her family enjoying the great outdoors of Colorado. Originally from Tucson, AZ she now calls Colorado Springs home and is excited to help you find that next one-of-a-kind items you have been looking for.

MArie Rossow

director of marketing

Marie has a BFA in Drama, with an emphasis in Dramaturgy, from the University of Oklahoma. Over the course of her career, she has shown that she can adapt to virtually any industry or role – with marketing always being the backbone of each role she mastered.  Early in her career, Marie found herself on the ground floor of numerous start-up companies in industries ranging from finance, property management, fitness, and even a campground.

Marie has traveled the country for the past 5 years as a product and marketing manager in Hotel and Casino Marketing. Her experience brings a unique perspective to this ever-changing digital marketing world. She is committed to creating and supporting marketing plans that help our businesses thrive.

Marie enjoys cooking, participating in theater, and bingeing Ru Paul’s Drag Race.