Our Team

Leah Nichols

Director, Rodale Dining Services

Born and raised in Australia, Leah has over 30 years experience in many areas of the food service industry. After training and working in her home country, she married and moved to the United States in 1987, continuing in Food Service management in Texas. In 1990, Leah found her way to Pennsylvania and eventually, Rodale. Working with Rodale has allowed her to combine her passion for food with a lifelong interest in nutrition, healthy living, sustainability and organics. In the local community, Leah has been a founding member of community projects such as the Emmaus Farmer’s Market and Seven Generations Charter School in Emmaus PA.


Sarah Danish

Finance Manager

Sarah is the Assistant Director who arrived at Rodale after graduating from Penn State University. A business management major, she is the number cruncher of the department and admits to being the least creative member of the team…spreadsheets are more her thing. She’s a Lehigh Valley native who loves it here, but enjoys spending time beachside with a good book whenever possible.

Kristen Smedley

Catering Manager

Kristen is the newest member of the Catering team and brings with her eight years of combined experience in restaurant management, hotel banquets, and off premise catering.  As a California native, she earned her degree in Hospitality and Tourism Management at San Diego State University.  Aside from California, she has also spent time working in Texas and Virginia, and now calls Pennsylvania home (although this has always been home for her husband).  Kristen loves making events come to life while creating lasting memories for clients.  In her free time she enjoys hiking, boxing, and cheering on the San Francisco Giants!

Amy Kost

Cafe and Catering Manager

Amy is our Café and Catering Manager and has been employed at Rodale for almost 20 years. She started her culinary career in high school working at the Village Inn in Allentown, Pa. Amy enjoys creating unique and seasonal menus for our corporate café here in Rodale’s Emmaus headquarters. She also specializes in overseeing catering for the Rodale Family and company departments, lending Kristen a hand with other events when she is available to. Amy lives in Allentown, PA with her husband, two lovely girls and furry baby Murphy the labradoodle. Her favorite dish is the classic PA Dutch style chicken pot pie.

Our roots grow deep in the Lehigh Valley. With over 120 years of combined experience, our Production Kitchen crew creates a real world version of Rodale’s food philosophy for every event. That means Rodale Catering and Events sources only the freshest organic, local ingredients available to celebrate the bounty of each season. In line with Rodale Inc’s corporate mission, we aim to inspire health, healing, happiness and love in the world one event at a time.