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the team

Meet the team bringing modern Italian to Beloit.


andy nichols

General Manager

Andy has been in the hospitality industry for 15 years. While earning his bachelor’s degree in marketing and business administration from the University of Iowa, he began his 13-year tenure with Buffalo Wild Wings, where he held nearly every position, eventually working his way up to certified training general manager. Andy finds his passion in the diverse nature of the industry and the people that make it tick. As general manager of Velvet Buffalo Modern Italian, Andy leads an exceptional front of house and back of house team, with a strong focus on creating one-of-a-kind experiences for guests. 


trent thomas

Assistant General Manager

Trent's dedication to raising service standards has shone through his progression from server to Kitchen Manager in his past role. He understands the importance of creating a welcoming environment and fostering a team culture centered around providing exceptional service. His diverse background and robust leadership skills have positioned him to make a substantial impact at Velvet Buffalo.



Executive Chef

Olivia’s passion for cooking comes from a love of learning and creating. A Janesville, Wisconsin native, Olivia attended culinary school at Blackhawk Technical College before studying abroad in Dublin, Ireland. Olivia came to Velvet Buffalo Modern Italian to explore new and creative outlooks, while staying close to home. She loves using fresh ingredients and combining flavors that are unexpected, but end up being beautifully paired in each of her seasonal dishes. Olivia believes there is always something new to learn and create and she brings her unique technique and flare to the Velvet Buffalo kitchen to give each guest a different experience that keeps them coming back for more. 



Pastry Chef

Growing up in Janesville, Wisconsin, Megan spent lots of time baking with her mother and grandmother. When she was 18 she got her start in the hospitality industry working as a busser where she was drawn to what was going on inside the kitchen. That inspired her to pursue a degree in culinary arts and restaurant management from Blackhawk Technical College which led her to landing an internship at a restaurant inside The Venetian in Las Vegas. Megan moved back home where she’s now creating delectable homemade desserts using fresh, local ingredients.



Bar & Event Supervisor

Kurstin's journey began at Merrill & Houston's, where she started as a bartender and later cross-trained as a server. In just over a year, Kurstin's dedication and skills earned her the role of Dining Room Manager, overseeing operations and ensuring exceptional guest experiences. Her move to Velvet Buffalo reflects her commitment to growth within a company that recognizes her potential and expertise in the industry.

Interested in joining our team? View our current openings!

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