Chef holding pan and transferring food to a plate.

Executive Chefs
Committed to Excellence

Meet Our Executive Chefs

MSU Culinary Services is home to some of the best chefs in the industry. Together, our Executive Chefs and Sous Chefs create top-notch cuisine for university students, faculty, staff and guests. Our chefs have won prestigious national awards, graduated from top culinary institutes and worked in some of the best kitchens throughout the U.S. and the world.

Chef Kurt Kwiatkowski

Chef Kurt Kwiatkowski

Senior Executive Chef, Residential Dining

Kurt Kwiatkowski is the Senior Executive Chef of Residential Dining for Culinary Services. In this role, he sets the standards for all menus in MSU’s residential dining halls, monitors and upholds food standards, runs the research and development of new menu items and recipe development, and develops culinary training for all full-time and management staff. Chef Kurt sights solid culinary fundamentals and strong local and state partnerships as some of the keys to MSU’s success.

For more than 35 years, he has worked in kitchens, learning the essentials of running a kitchen with chains such as Houston’s Restaurant, Paragon Restaurant Group, Morrison’s Restaurant Group, Ritz-Carlton, and independent restaurants in Atlanta, Wisconsin, and Michigan.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in Food Systems Management and Economics and a master’s degree from The School of Hospitality Business, both from MSU. He was also a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America CEIP program.

Chef Kurt is an active member of the American Culinary Federation, winning more than 30 medals in culinary competitions and several certifications, as well as presenting at regional and national conferences. He was voted Chef of the Year for the Detroit Chef De Cuisine Association in 2018. In August of 2019, Chef Kurt was also inducted into the American Academy of Chefs, which was a career goal of his for many years.

517-884-0660
Chef Mike Clyne

Chef Mike Clyne

Senior Executive Chef, Retail Services

Senior Executive Chef Mike Clyne oversees retail operations for MSU, including Sparty's mini-markets, Sparty's Market 1855 Place, MSU Concessions, The Workshop at the STEM Teaching and Learning Facility, and the Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center. As a graduate of Carlett Park College in England, Mike received his culinary training in Europe and earned city and guild certifications in culinary arts. Before joining MSU, he worked as a chef in Bermuda, Jamaica, England, Saudi Arabia and Wales. He also worked for Westin and Hyatt Hotels across the U.S. Mike's favorite foods are steak and chocolate, and his specialty areas are desserts and sauces.

517-884-8138
Executive Chef Kevin Cruz

Chef Kevin Cruz

Executive Chef
The Edge at Akers, Holmes Dining Hall

For more than 10 years, Chef Kevin Cruz has served in an Executive Chef role. His passion for the culinary arts stems from his experience as a U.S. Marine, when he had the opportunity to taste unique cuisine from all over the world. While studying at Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts, Chef Kevin completed an externship at Pinehurst Golf Resort in North Carolina, working during the U.S. Open. After graduating, he served as the Executive Chef of Lansing Sheraton, which received the #1 Food Quality Award for all North American Sheraton Hotels. Additionally, he has worked at the Vail Marriott in Colorado as well as Gaylord Palms Resort in Orlando, Fla. Chef Kevin enjoys connecting with students at MSU, helping shape their futures by teaching them important life skills. He also shares his Puerto Rican heritage and culture with Spartans through food.

517-355-1947
Executive Chef Bryan Latz

Chef Bryan Latz

Executive Chef
South Pointe at Case, Holden Dining Hall

Chef Bryan Latz has worked in foodservice for more than 14 years, joining the MSU team in 2012 and playing an integral role in the opening of The Vista at Shaw. After furthering his education at Central Michigan University and Lansing Community College, he began his culinary career as a kitchen supervisor and line cook at Flap Jack Restaurant. Before transitioning to his current role at MSU, Chef Bryan also served as Executive Chef and Kitchen Manager for The Claddagh Irish Pub, sous chef for Enso in East Lansing and a Kitchen Supervisor at Bar 30. He brings experience in a variety of areas, including facility setup and layout, staff training, and the transformation of underperforming locations to profitable operations. Growing up in Michigan, Chef Bryan appreciates all the Midwest region has to offer. His family hunted, fished, gardened and foraged, so he enjoys incorporating Midwest favorites and flavors in the menu development process and organizing special events in South Neighborhood to honor our state’s vast agriculture.

517-884-6384
Executive Chef Dien Ly

Chef Dien Ly

Executive Chef
The Gallery at Snyder Phillips, Thrive at Owen, The Vista at Shaw

Born in Saigon, Vietnam, Chef Dien Ly started cooking at a young age, learning French-Vietnamese fusion cuisine. Before transitioning to her current role, she served as a Sous Chef at Heritage Commons at Landon, helping craft a new menu for the renovated hall before it reopened in 2014. Chef Dien is a graduate of the Saigon Women’s Cooking Institute. She continued her education after moving to the United States, earning a Culinary Arts and Hotel Management degree from Lansing Community College. Prior to joining the MSU team, Chef Dien served as a young Executive and Co-owner of a Franco-Vietnamese restaurant, Con Ve Sau (La Cigale), and worked at Christie’s Bistro as well as the Lansing Sheraton Hotel. She earned her Certified Culinary Administrator designation from the American Culinary Federation (ACF) in 2019 and became an ACF Certified Executive Chef in 2017. Chef Dien uses her more than 20 years of culinary experience to create innovative meals with unique flavors for Spartans and their families.

517-355-4596
Executive Chef Ben Segueda

Chef Ben Segueda

Executive Chef
Brody Square, Heritage Commons at Landon

Chef Ben Segueda has worked on campus for more than 20 years, starting his MSU career at Case Hall from 1998 to 2019. Working his way up to a Cook II, he invested in developing himself and others, training students and on-calls on critical topics such as proper knife handling and cooking methods. Before transitioning to Brody and Landon, Chef Ben spent two years in South Neighborhood as a Sous Chef. In addition to focusing on recipe development and planning special meals, he oversaw order placement for key products, including fish and items from our vendor partner Woody’s Oasis. Prior to earning a promotion to Executive Chef, Ben served as the Executive Sous Chef for Brody and Landon, collaborating closely with the Executive Chef on menu management, forecasting, ordering, and daily operations. Throughout his career, he has been enthusiastic about cuisine and maintaining an environment that celebrates diversity, equity, and inclusion for our team members and the campus community. Fascinated with other cultures and cooking styles, Chef Ben is always willing to learn and experiment in the kitchen.

517-355-7470
Executive Chef Sarah Kops

Chef Sarah Kops

Executive Chef

Executive Chef Sarah Kops joined the retail services team in 2022. In her position, she oversees menu development for a variety of locations, including Sparty’s Market, MSU Concessions venues and The Workshop at the STEM Teaching and Learning Facility. Prior to taking on this role, she worked as an Executive Sous Chef at the Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center for 10 years. Since her first job at 15 years old as a dishwasher, she has been passionate about working in a kitchen. When she began her career with MSU, Sarah became the first female chef for the State Room Restaurant. Prior to 2012, she spent more than eight years working with Destination hotels and resorts as a corporate travel chef for more than 30 properties with four diamond ratings. She was the first female chef with Destination hotels in Tahoe, California. A Michigan native, Sarah decided to return to the mitten state to be closer to family and friends back home.