John Kunkel

Partner
Arendale
 

John Kunkel has partnered with Arendale Holdings and its sister companies for the past thirteen years. Previously, he enjoyed fifteen years of service with Pulte Home Corporation, one of the largest national homebuilders. While at Pulte, Mr. Kunkel held various financial positions including CFO for the Florida Region. Mr. Kunkel’s extensive knowledge in land acquisition and project financing has proven to be an invaluable asset for Arendale. He has held his CPA license for over 27 years and practiced public accounting with KPMG in Houston, Texas. Mr. Kunkel graduated with a BBA in Accounting from Texas A&M University. He serves on many boards and committees for his church and other local organizations.

Kent Smith

President/CEO
Cliffs Land Partners
 

Kent has an extensive knowledge, long history and exceptional sales success with real estate sales at The Cliffs, first at Glassy, then Valley, and ultimately Walnut Cove, where he and his wife Dotti currently reside. Kent most recently served as Broker-in-Charge for Walnut Cove Realty since 2010, a separate real estate company responsible for on-site sales at The Cliffs at Walnut Cove. Under Kent’s leadership Walnut Cove Realty experienced exceptional growth both in terms of number of sales, average sale prices and the total number of sales relative to the activity. Kent oversees all seven of The Cliffs communities and continues to improve policies and programs that proved successful at Walnut Cove. His proven track record, leadership skills and depth of knowledge, have earned Kent a tremendous amount of respect, not only with The Cliffs sales teams, but also throughout the luxury real estate industry.

Ken and Dotti own a home in The Cliffs at Walnut Cove, and also in Keowee Falls.

David Sawyer

Managing Partner
The Cliffs Clubs
 

David Sawyer’s focus is on leading The Cliffs Clubs Team of 500+ employees to deliver The Cliffs lifestyle, grow membership and increase values for all stakeholders by providing innovative hospitality, golf, culinary, wine, agronomy, retail, recreation, wellness and event experiences for Cliffs members and guests. Mr. Sawyer and The Cliffs Leadership Team are working to establish The Cliffs as the premier employer of choice in hospitality, agronomy, golf and culinary industries in the Carolinas.

Prior to being appointed Managing Partner in 2014, Mr. Sawyer served as the Chief Operating Officer and President of Cliffs Club Services from 2012-2014. He served on The Cliffs Board and assisted the Chief Restructuring Officer with the reorganization of The Cliffs Clubs from 2011-2012. David served as Vice President of The Cliffs Clubs from 2009-2012 focusing on the Mountain Region Clubs, Food and Beverage Operations and Lodging. David joined The Cliffs as General Manager of The Cliffs Valley in January 2007.

Prior to joining The Cliffs, David was the General Manager/COO of Westmoreland Country Club in Pennsylvania for six years and worked for ClubCorp for five years as General Manager of the Landmark Club in Connecticut as well as assignments at the Boston College Club, Rivers Club and Pinehurst. He served as the Executive Assistant Manager of the AAA Five Diamond, Forbes Five Star Nemacolin Woodlands Resort & Spa in the Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania for four years where he held progressive management positions in the rooms division, guest services and restaurant management. He is an alumnus of the Pennsylvania State University and served as Chaine des Rôtisseurs Vice Conseiller Culinaire from 2008-2010 helping Cliffs Young Chefs and Young Sommeliers to win regional and national acclaim. David and his wife live in Taylors, SC.

JEWEL BUNCHE

Human Resources Director

Jewel Bunche serves as the Human Resources Director for The Cliffs. Jewel is leading the program for The Cliffs to be the premier employer of choice in hospitality, golf, culinary, agronomy and real estate in the Upstate of South Carolina and Western North Carolina. She is a certified human resource professional with twelve years of experience in the hospitality and service industry. Jewel joined The Cliffs in 2007 and worked as a Recruiter and Human Resource Generalist. Her background encompasses talent acquisition, employment law, employee relations, training and benefits. She is a graduate of North Carolina State University and lives in Greenville, SC with her husband and three children.

MARY THOMSON

Senior Resources Director

Mary Thomson (MT) has successfully created hospitality moments for more than 25 years. She has held various positions in operations as well as human resources. Her operational expertise lends itself to the development of user-friendly programs that are meticulously tailored to the vision of the organization and can be easily applied to the day-to-day operations. With training handbooks inducted into the Smithsonian Institute in 1986, MT continues to have proven success with the development and implementation of comprehensive training programs, which define motivational needs, set objectives and assess achievements. She has participated in more than 100 restaurant openings and 13 golf and country club openings from conception to completion. Mary has also been responsible for the successful execution of food and beverage operations for 14 PGA and Tour events.

JIM EVANS

Senior Argonomist

Jim joined The Cliffs in 2010 and brings an awe-inspiring wealth of experience with him. He worked as Senior Assistant Superintendent at Augusta National Golf Club for ten years. He's worked The Masters multiple times, as an employee and volunteer.  Following his employment in Augusta, Jim joined with Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw to build and grow in their new course in Pinehurst, NC. He served on Toro's Turf Consumer Council for six years and still helps them test new products. In addition to being our soil science expert, Jim serves as the liaison between all of the golf course superintendents and their operations, the leadership group and owners. He works with superintendents on capital improvements, budgets, operations, employee relations, equipment purchasing and leasing, bulk supply purchasing, and partnership programs with corporate vendors.  Jim also serves as the Superintendent of the course at Keowee Falls.

BRIAN PEEPLES

Director of Golf

Brian joined The Cliffs in 2004 and has held a variety of positions in hospitality management. Brian began his career at The Cliffs as an Assistant Golf Professional at The Cliffs at Glassy and was soon promoted to Head Golf Professional at The Cliffs Valley. While at Valley, Brian assembled a strong team which executed over 100 events per year and played host to the BMW Charity Pro-Am at The Cliffs, a PGA Tour sanctioned event. Brian opened our second lake community, The Cliffs at Keowee Falls, in 2007. Shortly after opening this property, he was promoted to General Manager and built a solid foundation over a four year period.  In 2012, Brian became Director of Golf Operations for The Cliffs. In this role, he oversees golf operations, golf course maintenance, retail and golf instruction. Prior to his time at The Cliffs, Brian held the position of General Manager and Head Professional for Southerness Golf Club in Georgia. He has been a member of the PGA since 2001 and attended Covenant College in Lookout Mountain, GA. His golf expertise, along with solid management skills, enable him to deliver the level of service our membership has come to expect at The Cliffs.

MARY CAMPBELL

Director of Membership

Mary Haynsworth Campbell joined The Cliffs in 2007 as Corporate Project Manager responsible for policy and legal matters. She continues to handle permitting, licensing, contract review and litigation matters for the company while also serving as the Membership Director for The Cliffs Clubs. As the Membership Director, Mary handles all closings and purchases of memberships, membership policy and disciplinary actions. Prior to joining The Cliffs, she was the Director of the SE Regulatory for NuVox Communications. Mary earned her bachelors degree from the College of Charleston.

VICTOR CARDUCCI

Senior Executive Chef

An Executive Chef with The Cliffs communities since 1991, Victor Carducci was born into a large Italian family, learned to make fresh pasta at the age of six and has since been passionate about culinary arts. Victor received a B.A. in Hospitality Administration from Florida State University, and went on to earn an A.O.S. Culinary Arts Degree from Johnson & Wales University, where he graduated valedictorian. Prior to coming to The Cliffs, Victor worked with two-time James Beard Award-winning Chef Jimmy Schmidt at The Rattlesnake Club in Denver, Colorado, in addition to his time working at The Backside Inn in New Hampshire and for The Ritz-Carlton Company. Victor’s foremost objective at The Cliffs is to inspire innovative culinary operations throughout all seven clubs while maintaining the exceptional food standards.

ERIC COOPERMAN

Director of Beverage

Eric attended Johnson & Wales University in Miami Beach, Florida where he earned his degree in Culinary Arts then obtained his BS in Hospitality Management from Florida International University. Currently, Eric is studying toward his advanced sommelier certification through the Court of Master Sommeliers and is a Certified Specialist of Wine though the Society of Wine Educators. Before joining us at The Cliffs, Eric was the wine buyer and general manager of an upscale wine bar & retail establishment in Orlando, Florida. He brings Maître’d experience from Club Corp; winemaking knowledge from his 2009 harvest work at Maysara Winery in Oregon; industry knowledge as a fine wine sales representative; purchasing experience as a wine buyer for a San Francisco-based wine distribution company; and enjoys judging wines for the annual Hilton Head Wine and Food Festival. Eric has developed and continues to grow the wine culture at The Cliffs with weekly wine deals, a wine society, and specialty wine experiences, including The Cliffs Wine & Food Festival.

RICHARD HUBBLE

Real Estate Operations

Richard has had 40 years successful management experience in quality development and construction of resort, multi-family, single family, interior finish, and commercial product. His career spans the continent from Los Angeles, California to Texas, Florida, Georgia, Virginia, and the Carolinas, Richard has been associated with such well known Developments as Las Colinas in Irving, Texas, Trinity Broadcasting Network World Headquarters in Costa Mesa, California, Jefferson Properties in Aventura and St. Petersburg, Florida, Lincoln Property Company in Tyson’s Corner, Virginia, Escondido in Horseshoe Bay, Texas, and The Cliffs. Richard currently manages development and construction design and development and construction project implementation.

MIKE MCCALL

Director of Maintenance

Mike started with The Cliffs in 2000 as a Lead Carpenter, working on the Keowee Vineyards Ships Store and docks.  In his 13-year tenure, he has held a number of positions in various departments, including Development and Utilites Manager. In his currrent position, Mike is reponsible for overseeing all major renovations and the day-to-day operations across the company, including its seven clubs.

LAUREN BUCKLAND

Executive Assistant to Kent Smith, President/CEO, Cliffs Land Partners

Clemson graduate Lauren Buckland came to The Cliffs in 2008 as an assistant in the sales and marketing department. She obtained her real estate license, and by 2012 was a listing specialist for the mountain region. A 2015 promotion led to her current role as Executive Assistant to Cliffs Land Partners President Kent Smith. Lauren assists with daily operations, works closely with the sales teams in each region, manages projects, creates and distributes weekly sales reports, maintains sales data and trends, and serves as liaison to outside Real Estate brokerages.

CASEY JO HITT

Executive Assistant to David Sawyer, Managing Partner, The Cliffs Clubs

Casey Jo came to The Cliffs in 2007 and has held numerous positions, including Corporate & Discovery Guest Services Coordinator, Keowee Vineyards Event Coordinator and Keowee Towne Market Sales Associate. Casey Jo was promoted to Executive Assistant in 2014. In her current role, Casey Jo assists the leadership team with management of day-to-day operations; board communications, planning meetings, itineraries and events; managing projects; conducting research; preparing correspondence, reports, and presentations; making corporate travel plans, and arranges luxury hospitality for Cliffs guests.

Share This Page