Managing partner, Tableseide Restaurant Group
As an admitted hyper-organized Type-A, Lisa Seidensticker made an interesting career choice in going with catering and special event planning.
Some of that comes from family. Her father, Steve Seidensticker, has been in the hospitality and restaurant business for years. And her brothers, former 40 under 40 winners Joe and Patrick Seidensticker, are also in the business. The Seidenstickers, along with another partner, non-family member Jeff Greco — also affectionately called Switzerland during the occasional family scuffle — operate Sarasota-based Tableseide Restaurant Group. Holdings include Louies Modern in downtown Sarasota, Libby’s Café & Bar in the Southside Village and a catering division.
Lisa Seidensticker works a little bit everywhere in the business, but catering is her specialty. Her passion, she says, comes in organizing an event that leaves clients “over the moon.”
But that same passion can become her biggest challenge, especially when the inevitable hiccup happens. That could be a truck stopping short and trays of food flying. Or that could be a waitress setting up for a party in the wrong house. When issues come up, Seidensticker says she does the best she can to focus and slow things down. Then it’s time to solve the problem.
“Catering is all about challenges,” says Seidensticker. “You always have to stay on your feet in this business. You have to be flexible.”
— Mark Gordon
Name: Lisa Seidensticker
City of residence: Sarasota,
Twitter handle: Twitter what?
Employer: Tableseide Restaurant Group
Title: Managing Partner, focus on catering and special event development
Birthplace: Estes Park, Colo.
Years on the Gulf Coast: I grew up in Boca Grande, living there until I was in high school, I then explored the United States to finally land in New Hampshire for six years. Moved back to Sarasota about five years ago.
Marital status/children: Common law. We have been together for 15 years and have two beautiful boys, Kannon Morrissey, 7, and Asher Morrissey 3.
Alma mater: Rhodes College, University of Tampa, and the school of life.
Best place to network: Everywhere! I am constantly talking about what I do to people I meet at school, dog park, Publix, you name it and I am there talking. People love to talk about catering and the funny stories I have.
Coolest business experience: I have catered for some amazing groups in some beautiful locations. That was the draw for me. I was able to move around Sarasota and see beautiful homes, boats, venues; it was usually a happy event with lots of love and motion. WME was one of my favorite groups to work with at IMG Academy. The UTC Mall Sneak Peak was pretty amazing, I still know the back hallways better than I know the actual mall.
The most important business lesson I’ve learned: Honor your staff, they are essential to your success.
One website that makes your job easier: Caterease.com.
One community group you’re most involved with: In my job I am lucky to have the opportunity to work with and learn about so many wonderful nonprofit groups in Sarasota it is hard to pick one or two. Equality of Florida has been wonderful! JFCS does such wonderful work with so many different groups of people.
Favorite off-hours activity: Spending time with my boys and man! I work and work a lot so every chance I have free I am with them. They are my rocks that keep me centered.
Two people, dead or alive, you’d like to have dinner with: Tom Robbins and Hunter S. Thompson.
What you would be doing if you could pick another career: I would be working for Doctors without Borders.
Most adventurous thing you’ve ever done: Backpacking across Europe for 3 months, skydiving and moving from my home in New Hampshire to work for my family.
What’s at the top of your bucket list: Exploring New Zealand
What new skill would you like to learn: stress management
Who would play you in a movie about your life: Joan Rivers.
If I had a magic wand I’d: use it to instill wonder and joy back into those who have lost theirs, young and old.