The Highlands Bar & Grille Staff

Claudette Halpern, Food and Beverage Director
Food and Beverage Director – Claudette Halpern
Claudette is a career food and beverage professional, who has been successful wherever she has landed with over 28 years in the industry. She has successfully managed in private clubs and commercial restaurant environments.  She has a wealth of experience as both a dining and catering manager. She also has attained the first level, Court of Masters, Sommeliers Americas, which bring a whole new world of wines to The Highlands.

Brandon Weaver, Sous Chef

Brandon's first job was at a Japanese restaurant, and it was there when he discovered his passion and decided to become a chef. He graduated in 2007 from Orlando Culinary Academy with an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Culinary Arts. His knowledge of Japanese cuisine took him to Jacksonville, Florida where he took a job as Executive Chef of Tomo Japanese Restaurant. He later met his mentor David Medure, and worked as a chef on his culinary team at Restaurant Medure, a AAA 4 Diamond fine dining restaurant. He relocated his young family to Tucson, Arizona in November... and is now here to showcase his talents at The Highlands. 

Mike Kaatz, Dining Services Manager
Mike relocated to Oro Valley in 2010 from the Chicago area, where he and his wife Darlene owned and operated a successful steakhouse for 15 years. The restaurant won many awards and received accolades for cuisine and popularity while maintaining a neighborhood feeling for a "Cheers" bar crowd. Since moving to the area, he served as Food and Beverage Director at Oro Valley Country Club until their recent sale. Mike and his wife share four grown children, four grandkids and two terrific cats. 

Debbie LoebbakaDining Floor Supervisor
Debbie Loebbaka is well known within our community through her continuous employment at The Highlands. She was very successful on the floor as our lead server for several years. Debbie now assists the Dining Services Manager in the Grille and in the Bar.

Donna Black, Banquet Captain
Donna, a Highlands resident, joined the team in Fall 2015. She moved to The Highlands from Leawood, Kansas with her husband Doug Black. Donna brings 30-plus years of hotel and catering management. Donna is currently responsible for all training, set up and staffing for banquets at The Highlands.