MEET OUR EXTRAORDINARY GROUP OF TALENTED PLANNERS & CHEFS
Tom Evans is Owner/Chief Operating Officer of The Mane on Main and Dupree Catering + Events. He is part owner of Azur Food Group, which acquired Dupree Catering + Events in 2014. Tom Evans, originally from the Washington, D.C. Metro area, was raised in the hospitality and food industry. He worked with his family’s catering business for more than 30 years learning all aspects of the catering business as they worked with embassies, government officials, universities and more. In 2012, Tom moved to Lexington, KY to open Azur Catering. Two years later, Tom supervised a merger with Dupree Catering + Events where he now owns and manages all operations - including their newest venue space atop the Chase building called The Mane on Main.
Sarah Thompson Fitzgerald serves as the business manager and event coordinator for Dupree Catering + Events. Sarah, a Kentucky native, attended Lexington's Sayre School, Agnes Scott College in Decatur, GA, and UK majoring in Economics. She learned many aspects of the catering business from Dupree’s founder Harriet Dupree Bradley, who was a motivating mentor. Sarah is passionate about the catering profession and has had a love of cuisine since helping her mother cook, cater, and set "pretty" tables at a young age. During her 18 year tenure at Dupree Catering, she has seen the business grow in exciting new ways from working with Harriet’s meal preparation service Entrée Vous to the merger with the Azur Food Group in 2014. Sarah is excited to apply her years of experience to your next event.
Originally from Indiana, Natalie started out in the hospitality industry by serving at restaurants. She knew from a young age that event planning was in her future, as she often jumped at the opportunity to plan every detail of family reunions, holiday gatherings, pool parties, etc. Natalie graduated from University of Kentucky with a degree in Hospitality Management and Tourism, and a minor in Business. She has worked at a local event planning company, as well as serving as the venue coordinator for the Winchester Opera House. A recent newlywed herself, Natalie knows how important the wedding day is — she loves working with brides! But whether it’s a wedding, a corporate holiday party or a gala event, Natalie is the person to talk to if you want to rent The Mane on Main venue space.
Amanda Henderson serves as a Lead Event Coordinator for Dupree Catering + Events. Amanda has worked in the food service industry for over 20 years with a background in corporate and fine dining. She began in hospitality management in Detroit, Michigan and moved to Lexington in 2001 to train managers and employees in corporate restaurants throughout the KY and OH region. In 2006, she met Chef Jeremy Ashby and began working with the close knit community of Azur Restaurant & Patio where she furthered her love for fine dining and gracious service. She catered many private events with Azur Catering and not long after Azur and Dupree Catering merged, she moved into full time event coordination working with owner Tom Evans. Amanda has coordinated nearly every kind of event there is – from weddings to corporate and political functions to private home parties – and she would love the opportunity to cater your next event too!
A native Lexingtonian, Jason graduated from Henry Clay High School and studied accounting at the University of Kentucky. He worked in local restaurants for 25 years, serving 9 years as a sous chef before coming to Dupree Catering + Events in 2013. Jason also served as our Sous Chef before transitioning to be our Operations Manager - a role he is uniquely suited for with his knowledge of event needs, organizational skills and attention to detail.
Growing up in Bourbon Co. Jane learned a love for cooking on her mother's apron strings. Chef Jane Thompson is a Kentucky native. She has been a devoted employee of Dupree Catering and Events for the past 13 years, Executive Chef for the past 5. Chef Janey (as her staff lovingly refers to her) attained a culinary degree from Sullivan University graduating Magna Cum Laude. Janey enhanced her culinary skills by working in different restaurants throughout the bluegrass region including; Dudley's, The Village Idiot and Proof on Main in Louisville. She is also dedicated to using locally sourced food and green products. During her time as Executive Chef, she helped Dupree Catering and Events became the first caterer in Kentucky to receive a 2 Star certification by the Green Restaurant Association (GRA) and one of only 13 caterers in the United States to be certified. Chef Janey loves to tie in her southern roots with flavors and techniques picked up from her experiences elsewhere to provide a traditional and eclectic food experiences for our guests.
Halida started in the food business when she was 18 years old in Bosnia & Herzegovina, where she also studied Food & Nutrition. She emigrated to the United States in 2000, where she gained even more experience in baking and management as a hard worker who is always eager to learn! Halida has been the Sous Chef with several other companies before she began her job as Pastry Chef with Dupree Catering + Events in 2015. Halida has a master touch with baked goods because she never gives up on something until she has done it to perfection. Everyone LOVES her delicious offerings - made fresh from scratch every day!
A native Kentuckian, our Sous Chef Brooke grew up in Winchester appreciating Southern culture and cuisine. She has worked for Dupree Catering since 2016 under the close tutelage of our Executive Chef Janey Thompson. As the fourth of five children, Brooke has a strong appreciation for the importance good food and dining play in close family relations and friendships. It was always mandatory to be home for dinner with the family with no outside distractions permitted! Made-from-scratch food, service, and presentation are all high priorities at Dupree Catering + Events, and Brook loves creating these memorable experiences every day for our clients.