Executive Chef
Hometown: Philadelphia, PA
School: CU Boulder

Cholly started of as a Sous Chef at Vista Verde in the winter of 1998. He proceeded to stay on the ranch for approximately nine years before leaving to pursue Artisan bread baking skills. Cholly soon realized that Vista Verde was his true home and moved back to Colorado in 2010 with his wife, Alaya, whom he met at VVR. They recently had a little boy named Eamon and love spending time with him. In 2012, Vista Verde offered Cholly the position as Executive Chef, where he, has since, been in charge of the wonderful food and dining program. Some of Chef Cholly’s interests include: hiking, fly fishing, camping, bowhunting and bread baking. Cholly is also a lifetime member of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and a member of The Bread Baker’s Guild of America since 2004.


Chef de Cuisine
Hometown: Hanford, CA
School: College of the Redwoods

John loves to travel; last year, he and his wife Erica (Head of Kids Programming) traveled around Spain and Turkey. He also likes to cook and enjoy the outdoors via hiking and camping. One can most likely find John fly fishing all around Routt County on his off time with his favorite pup, Goldie. A few of his most prized fish he has caught in the area include a 24” Brown Trout and a 26” Rainbow Trout out of the Elk River. John and Erica are had their first child in October, Althea!


Sous Chef
Hometown: Westfield, IN
School: Ivy Tech Community College

Andrew, also known by fellow staff members as Fackler, enjoys playing guitar and backpacking. If you catch him on a good day, you can ask him to sing and play ``The Middle`` from Jimmy Eat World on the guitar (He's got a pretty good voice). For 8 years of his life, he only wore the color orange and still to this day, always wears a tie when flying on airplanes. Because of his time spent in Spain, he could eat Paella every day for the rest of his life and be fully satisfied.


Line Cook
Hometown: Yorktown, VA
School: Culinary Institute of Virginia

John loves cooking, mountain biking, hiking, fly fishing and working out. He has lived in six different states within the U.S. and three different countries, including three years in Italy and two years in Germany. He has been cooking professionally since 2012 and plans to open a food truck or restaurant in the future. Fun fact: John was the first of his high school graduating class to graduate from college and is the youngest graduate from the Culinary Institute of Virginia.


Line Cook
Hometown: Washington D.C.
School: New York University & UC Santa Cruz

Bridgette has spent six years living in the Middle East working as a freelance camerawoman and photographer. She is currently based in Beirut. Bridgette graduated from New York University with a BFA in Photography and Imaging and a MA from UC Santa Cruz in Social Documentation. She is an old friend of John & Erica Thompson who told her about VVR. She is excited to spend this season cooking with a great team and exploring the outdoors!



Hometown: Parker, CO

Bubba loves spending time outdoors, especially fishing. He has been involved in guest ranch services for 6 years now. Fun fact: Bubba has performed two times in the Steamboat Dance Theatre, a production that showcases many different styles of dancing. He performed a Grease and Disney Princess piece this last year and was in the barn dance scene from the film Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, the year before.


Hometown: Carmel, IN
School: University of Northern Colorado

It is high time that Taylor has come back to work at VVR! It has been 4 years since Taylor first worked at the ranch and we could not be more happy to have her back. She graduated from the University of Northern Colorado with a degree in Human Services and Outdoor Education. Taylor is a competitive roller blade dancer, has been very involved in Young Life, loves to snow board and has a passion for caring for the elderly. She also just returned from a solo European adventure!

luxury ranch resort staff