Globally trained. Diverse. Versatile. Insightful and influenced by our environment and community. Adventurous, with a passion for quality and a meticulous eye for detail. We come prepared.
Dimitrios is a seasoned hospitality leader with over 20 years of experience. Dimitrios graduated with a BA in Tourism from the Institute of Business Administration in Athens, Greece. He received a Master’s with Honors in Hospitality Management from the Swiss Hotel Management School, Switzerland, and the University of Derby, UK. In 2006, Dimitrios joined Hyatt Hotels as the Assistant F&B Manager at the historic Park Hyatt Philadelphia. He advanced his career through various Food & Beverage roles in some of the company’s most prominent properties, including Park Hyatt Los Angeles, Grand Hyatt San Francisco, and Hyatt Regency Jersey City. Dimitrios moved to New York City in 2011 as the Beverage Director at the renowned Grand Hyatt New York, where he successively assumed the roles of Executive Steward, Director of Banquets, Assistant Director of Food and Beverage, and acting Director of Food and Beverage. In March 2020, Dimitrios joined Levy at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center as General Manager for the iconic venue’s new hospitality brand, CULTIVATED. During the COVID pandemic, he orchestrated the center’s medical surge Food and Beverage operations, transitioning to the largest vaccination operation in the US before the convention center’s re-opening for business in August 2021. Dimitrios is proud to be leading the CULTIVATED brand by inspiring his talented team to re-imagine the guest food and beverage experience and by building trusted partnerships. In 2021, Dimitrios was honored with Levy’s ‘Location Leader of the Year’ award.
For over 25 years, Chef Andrew Matthews has been a leader in the culinary space. A Culinary Arts, Food Science, and Business of Hospitality Management graduate from William Angliss Institute in Melbourne, Australia, he extended his fine cuisine and gastronomy studies at the Cordon Bleu, Paris. In 1997 while working under the late world-acclaimed French-Australian Chef Jacques Heraudeau, he was awarded the Andre Simon award for outstanding student chef by The Australian Wine and Food Society.
He traveled through France, Spain, Italy, and the UK, working at the most recognized culinary institutions. Then in 2005, Chef Andrew came to New York City as a sous chef at Gramercy Tavern; he rapidly became an industry leader, working at E-Squared Hospitality, Marriott Hotels, and a.k.a. Hotel Group Chambers Hotel. He was also honored by the James Beard Foundation and featured in NBC, PIX11, Gourmet Traveller, and The Age. He later served as Executive Chef of TAO Group and MSG subsidiaries for seven years, elevating the food standard, taking the company’s culinary program internationally, and receiving global recognition.
In 2022, Chef Andrew joined CULTIVATED as Senior Executive Chef. He has integrated different food cultures and cuisines of New York, drawing focus from the local community in a modern way. He brings his magnitude of culinary experience and his focus on local, seasonal, and sustainable food to the world-famous landmark, the Jacob Javits Center. Chef Andrew leads CULTIVATED’s unique ‘Rooftop Farm-to-Table’ concept, which incorporates fresh produce from the one-acre rooftop farm into the convention center’s menus.
Chef Niko is a Culinary Institute of America graduate who has always been passionate about making great food and creating memorable experiences. Early in his career, Niko worked as the Banquet Cook at the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Boston before joining Aramark as the Sous Chef at Citi Field, home of the NY Nets, where he soon got promoted as Executive Sous Chef. In 2013, Niko held his first Executive Chef role with Aramark at the Prudential Center in Newark, where he led the culinary division and created the venue’s signature menus. In 2014, Niko moved to Greece. He was appointed Executive Sous Chef at the Hilton Athens hotel. In 2019, Niko joined our Levy family as Executive Chef at the Spectrum Center home of the Charlotte Hornets and Cooking for the Michael Jordan Family.
His diverse experience includes roles with US Cruise Lines, a hotel in Alaska’s Denali National Park, and the Convention Center in Phoenix. After a successful tenure at Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina, where he served as the Executive Chef, the CULTIVATED family at Javits welcomed Niko in May 2022. He has brought his eclectic cuisine with a foundation in French Techniques, his roots in Mediterranean Cuisine, and his passion about farm to table cuisine, local ingredients, and sustainable practices making him a perfect fit for our team.
Erika has been a Hospitality professional for almost two decades, with expertise in Food & Beverage, Sales & Marketing, Event Management, and Operations of Hotels, Restaurants, and related Institutions. A native of the Philippines, she started her career very early when she helped manage her family’s bakeshop & party needs business. Erika studied Hospitality Management for her Bachelor’s degree and then supplemented that with Meeting & Conference Management and Special Events Planning certificates. She completed her MBA in International Business Management and graduated with Honors. Erika’s career journey brought her to many reputable luxury companies, namely Hyatt Hotels, LUX* Resorts, Hilton’s Waldorf Astoria, Marriott, Dinex Group by Chef Daniel Boulud, and presently, Levy of Compass Group.
The CULTIVATED family at Javits welcomed Erika in August 2021 after a successful tenure at Barclays Center, where she served as the Director of Catering & Sales. She has spearheaded hospitality for NBA, WNBA, and NHL teams and special events in the arena. She also supported prominent events across Sports & Entertainment Levy venues.
Erika is a versatile leader motivated by her passion for the industry, drive for excellence, and dedication to building and nourishing relationships. Her positive outlook, energy, and genuine care have increasingly built an incredible culture within Cultivated and Javits while elevating the Sales & Marketing aspects of the operation.
Jabbar is a leader in the Hospitality Industry with 18 years of experience. Jabbar is a member of the Food and Beverage Association of America as well as a member of the Les Amis D’Ecoffier Society. Jabbar was born in West Philadelphia, grew up in Brooklyn, and attended Penn State University on a Basketball Scholarship while majoring in Business Management. He has worked at three luxury hotel properties in Midtown Manhattan, as Director of Banquets and Catering at the NY Marriott Marquis, Director of Banquets and Catering at the Waldorf Astoria, Director of Food and Beverage at the Intercontinental Hotel Times Square. Jabbar won Manager of the Year at the New York Marriott Marquis in 2006 and again in 2008. He has worked at Shea Stadium with the New York Mets as a Restaurant Manager and Director of Food, Beverage, and Merchandise for Madison Square Garden Company at the Beacon Theater. Jabbar was a member of the Opening Team for Revel Resort and Casino in Atlantic City. He has also worked in the Higher Education Field as a Director of Operations overseeing Catering, Residential, and Retail Dining.
Jabbar started with Compass Group in 2020, working as the Senior Director of Operations at the University of Pennsylvania, part of the Ivy League Schools. At the University, Jabbar oversaw all Retail Locations, Students’ Dining Halls, and Catering Functions throughout the campus. Jabbar joined the Cultivated Family in May 2022, taking on the role of Director of Operations, leading the Restaurant and Cafes Department and the Catering Operations Department. Jabbar oversees all Front of the House. He focuses on improving the customer experience, all while building and developing a solid team.
John, a New York native, is a seasoned Food and Beverage professional with over 20 years of experience. John graduated with an Associate’s degree in Culinary Arts from the New York Institute of Technology in 2002. He started his long career with Centerplate in 2001 as the
Culinary Operations Manager at Bethpage Ballpark in Central Islip. John was responsible for all Concessions food services, purchasing concessions food, training culinary personnel, sanitation standards, and inventory control. In 2007, John transferred to the Prudential Center in Newark as Sous Chef. In 2013, John became the Executive Chef for The John Harvard’s Brewery and Ale House in Lake Grove. In 2017, John became the Sous Chef, followed by his appointment as the Purchasing Director for Centerplate at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, where he remained through the transition to Levy/Cultivated. Since joining Levy, John has led the Purchasing department and has spearheaded the organization in purchasing, inventory, costing, and accounts payables. John’s experience and institutional knowledge of the convention center’s business are invaluable to Cultivated’s mission of elevating the guest experience and expanding it to a global audience, including the growth in special events.
Dan began his career in hospitality in 2014, working in Food and Beverage at Marriott International. During his tenure with Marriott, Dan excelled in diverse roles, including Food and Beverage Lead, Event Specialist, H&R, and General Accountant. He was promoted to Assistant Director of Finance and Accounting with Marriott in Los Angeles and a year later to Senior Assistant Director of Finance and Accounting in Long Island. Dan furthered his career by joining Cipriani in New York as a Consultant in Finance and Accounting before his promotion to the Senior Assistant Director of Finance and Accounting in the new Cipriani South Street location, where he led the pre-opening and post-opening Finance operations. Dan graduated from the City University of Seattle and obtained his MBA. Dan joined the Levy family at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in January 2022, and he’s since led the day-to-day Finance division operations; he has built a collaborative relationship with our Javits partners, Dan has successfully represented the organization to clients, subcontractors, and he and stakeholders elevated the standards for financial accountability and performance.
Javone has 20 years of Human Resources experience in the NY Metro area. She comes to us from the Pepsi Cola Bottling of New York, where she held the Regional Director of Human Resources role since 2020 and led a team of over 1,500 people from New York to Virginia. Before that role, Javone was the Director of Human Resources for Marriott International. In her 6-year tenure, she led 22% improvement in engagement results. She advanced the Hotel’s labor relations by mentoring her Senior management team and building a strong relationship with the Local 6 Union leadership. Javone’s experience and progressive career advancement include roles with Sodexo in the NYC Healthcare industry, ServosAir at JFK and LGA, and host Marriott at JFK. Javone graduated from Cornell University with a degree in Labor Relations and John Jay College with a degree in Criminal Justice. She Joined the Cultivated team in May 2023 as our Director of Human Resources.