president & Founder, OCTopus / toronto
Guy Rigby’s passion is food. For the last 26 years he’s had the good fortune to work (and eat) his way around the world with Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts. From Houston, Tokyo and Hong Kong to Toronto, Bangkok and New York, Guy has both savored the best of global cuisine and had a hand in helping to shape and define food and beverage trends. As the VP of Food & Beverage for Four Seasons in the Americas, Guy travelled around North and South America creating restaurant and bar concepts while working with the world’s top restaurant designers. Guy led the transformation of Four Seasons hotel dining rooms and lounges into vibrant, relevant restaurants and bars with great concepts that serve excellent food, are unique in the market and are profitable.
With a mind for business and a palate for innovation, Guy has now formed Octopus, a food and beverage consultancy dedicated to all facets of creating a memorable, profitable gastronomic experience.
Guy’s passion for all things culinary began at an early age. Born in England, he and his siblings grew up with his mother's accomplished cooking, a far cry from the stereotype of bland British food, which was complemented by selections from his father's wine cellar. Today Guy carries on the tradition of great food at home, donning the family chef's hat for his appreciative family, and his beloved Golden Retriever, Archie, who eagerly awaits any scraps from the table.
(PR & Marketing Communications Partner)
PRESIDENT & FOUNDER, BULLFROG + BAUM / NYC
Jennifer Baum is the founder and president of Bullfrog + Baum, an award-winning PR agency specializing in hospitality, lifestyle and consumer marketing. With a client roster that includes well-known culinary celebrities, up-and-coming culinary talent, consumer goods businesses, international real estate development firms and global hotel brands, Jennifer does as much to keep established brands top of mind as she does to bring the next best thing to the marketplace. With over 25 years in the industry, Jennifer’s corporate savvy and keen eye for creating and marketing successful concepts have played an integral role in the changing landscape of hospitality marketing.
When not eating, drinking, cooking or thinking about the above, she fills her time tackling the New York Times crossword puzzle in ink, Soul-Cycling, traveling with her family and hiking with her two mini golden doodles.
Chef / CEO, BRENNAN GROUP HOSPITALITY / NYC
With a culinary career spanning over forty years, Terrance Brennan is a highly-accomplished chef, restaurateur, consultant and entrepreneur. Throughout his career, Chef Brennan has won multiple awards and accolades and is one of America’s most renowned and imaginative chefs and restaurateurs. Terrance is the Chef/CEO of Brennan Group Hospitality and Brennan Group Consulting, which has launched numerous critically acclaimed restaurants and products.
Originally from Virginia, Brennan grew up in the kitchen cooking at his family’s restaurant, and later worked a multitude of positions in restaurants and hotels across Virginia and Washington, DC, before moving to New York to work at the legendary Le Cirque, rising through the ranks over two and a half years, ultimately becoming sous chef.
In order to hone his skills even further, Brennan moved to Europe where he had the opportunity to work in a number of Michelin-starred kitchens such as Taillevent, La Tour d’ Argent, Les Crayeres, Gualtiero Marchesi, Locanda Dell’ Angelo and La Gavroche. A defining moment for Brennan was while working in the south of France under Chef Roger Verge at Le Moulin de Mougins, where he was inspired by the region, and his personal culinary style began to emerge. Brennan took his craft back to the states, and in 1993, he opened his first restaurant, the critically acclaimed Picholine. Quickly becoming a premier dining destination, Picholine earned two Michelin stars, three stars from The New York Times, and a James Beard nomination for Outstanding Restaurant, among others. Picholine became a longstanding fixture in New York, welcoming guests for nearly 25 years.
In 2001, Brennan expanded the impressive cheese service he created for Picholine, and opened Artisinal, a bistro-fromagerie-wine bar that was the first US restaurant to feature a cheese shop and cheese aging “caves.” Leaping off of its success, Brennan opened The Artisanal Premium Cheese Center, a 10,000 square-foot facility dedicated to the world’s finest artisanal cheeses. Brennan later launched Brennan Group Consulting and Brennan Group Hospitality, offering a wide range of services within the hospitality industry.
In 2019 Brennan Group Hospitality joins forces with Guy Rigby of Octopus to bring over 80 years of experience to their clients.
President & Founder, Plus One Hospitality
With over a decade working for two of New York City’s top restaurateurs – Jean-Georges Vongerichten and Danny Meyer – Jen’s skills reflect a wide range of expertise developed through years of on-the-job experience. Having worked all front of house line level and management positions across a diverse portfolio of concepts, and in both domestic and international markets, Jen leverages that experience into a passion for both training and operations. As an independent consultant, Jen has evolved her knowledge beyond restaurants and formed a long-standing relationship with Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, for whom she is now the preferred Food & Beverage Operations trainer for both existing properties, as well as for new openings and renovations.
Most of Jen's free time is spent much like her work life - traveling, eating, drinking, and exploring new cities. In the little time she is home in Portland, she enjoys watching sports, cooking dinner for friends, and keeping up with the ever-evolving food & beverage scene of the Pacific Northwest.
(People Development Partner)
president & FOUNDER, dm works
Growing up in a very large close-knit family in Western Canada, Dennis learned from an early age that working together created positive synergies and outcomes. With a values-driven ethos, Dennis found his calling in training people to be their best selves.
With a deep base of experience in hospitality, Dennis has been firmly committed to the growth and development of hospitality leaders and their teams all around the world for more than 20 years. As the founder and president of DM WORKS, Dennis has worked with many of the world’s leading hotel brands, as well as other service industries. His client list includes Four Seasons, Rosewood, Ritz-Carlton, Morgan’s Hotel Group, Radisson and many other independent luxury brands. Dennis feels blessed to have become a sought after facilitator, consultant and coach.
In his free time, Dennis keeps very active, hiking, spinning, practicing yoga and traveling the world. He has a love of music and taught himself to play piano and guitar at a very early age.