The Highlands Team


Our team is a veritable melting pot, with people from all corners of the country and pretty much every walk of life. They do have some things in common, though: a passion for food and the uncanny knack for making your experience an amazing one. Take a look at our stories and come on in to talk to us—we may even quiz you.

Kevin Morrison

Kevin Morrison

Chef/Owner



Kevin Morrison was the founder of Red Tomato Specialty Produce, serving the independent upscale restaurant industry in Denver, as well as co-founder of the Spicy Pickle Sub Shop and Spicy Pickle Franchising. In 2006 the concept won Nation’s Restaurant News “Hot Concept” award and went public in 2007. Later in ’07 Kevin was the creative force behind Crumb Rustic Bakery, a wholesale bakery that serviced all of Colorado’s Spicy Pickle restaurants. In 2010 Kevin left the restraints of corporate life to develop other grassroots food concepts like Tacos Tequila Whiskey and Poco Torteria.

I like to…


Travel, sail, hang with my family, watch TV. Maybe not in that order.


Little known facts


I go on the log ride with my twin boys but it scares the hell out of me!


Angella Jimenez

Angella Jimenez

Office Manager



Angella, is the KTM Restaurant Group Director of Administration. Ms. Jimenez brings over 11 years of management experience to KTM. From Human Resources to Director of Operations Angella has done it all. Angella started her professional career within Escrow and quickly moved into management. The Real Estate industry opened many doors to her over the years, allowing her to not only grow her knowledge, but it also offered her valuable experiences. Her first love, restaurants, has always held a special place in her heart though. Like many poor college students, she worked in restaurants to pay the bills. Hosting, bussing, serving and her absolute favorite, bartentending! She has been continually recognized (by her employers and staff) for her diligence and commitment. When Angella is not putting in hours at the office she enjoys riding motorcycles and attending events for local charities she is proud to support. 

Steve Shoemaker

Steve Shoemaker

Director of Tacoperations



Steve comes to KTM from Sysco Foods in Denver, where he spent just over 6 years as a Marketing Associate. During his time at Sysco, he earned awards for excellence and growth and served his customers with integrity and professionalism. He remains a respected leader and resource to his former coworkers. Prior to Sysco, Steve worked with the Hillstone Restaurant Group for nearly 10 years where he learned the importance of standardized systems and team culture.

Growing up in Indiana, Steve spent a lot of time in the outdoors and was fortunate to have a nice 10-acre yard to play football, baseball, soccer, drive golf balls as hard as he wanted and use their tractor to make BMX and RC car tracks. After graduating from Huntington College, Steve attended Johnson & Wales. He participated in the Garnish Your Degree program which earned him his Associates in Culinary Arts.


Little known facts


Steve enjoys skiing, drawing, doing homework (sometimes), camping and sitting around the bonfire with his 2 kids and wife of 14 years.

In High School, Steve worked at a local bike shop starting off as a bike assembler.


Jason Hurtado

Jason Hurtado

General Manager



I am from Southern California born and raised. Growing up in Huntington Beach, I did surf but I prefer the snow more. I have a Bachelors of Arts in Business from the University of North Carolina, Go Tar Heels. Then pursued a Culinary degree at Cordon Blue in California. Throughout my career I have worked for serval high profile concepts including Yardhouse, Hanger 24, and US Taco. I moved to Colorado about 2 years ago knowing no one and I could not be happier with my decision and now I work with a great group of people and look forward to building the KTM brand. 

Little known facts


I’ve been snowboarding for over 20 years and love the rush you get on the perfect run. 

David Leyva

David Leyva

Bar Manager



David was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. His parents opened up a Costa Rican restaurant when he was still in high school, which ended up being his first look into the service industry. After graduating, he moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico to study psychology and sociology at the University of New Mexico where he lived for three years, simultaneously working his way up through the two restaurants he worked at there. This led to the discovery of his passion for bartending.

On a whim, he visited Denver alone knowing no one in the city at all and fell in love with the state as a whole. Within a year, he moved into the city and began exploring all it had to offer. It was here that he developed a new appreciation and almost obsession with agave based spirits, which eventually led him to a server position at Tacos Tequila Whiskey. Within a year he worked his way up to the position of bar manager. He loves his team and strives to prove that he will never ask them to work harder than he does, which is why you’ll see him working his hardest day-in and day-out, whether it’s making drinks or washing dishes.


I like to…


snowboard, hike, camp, spend time with my dog, travel and give high-fives!


Little known facts


David can play five different instruments!

 

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