The KSG Team

Kester Search Group approaches every placement as a team. In this way, you are truly partnering with a healthcare executive search firm—not a single person—giving you the advantage of multiple perspectives and insights. Think of us as your recruiting business partner. Let’s build your team so you can build the future.

Our Company Culture

We aim to hire the right people, foster a collaborative and fun team environment, continue our commitment to excellence, learning, and giving back, as well focusing on doing the right thing every time — for our clients, for our employees, and for our candidates.

Lee Kester

President & CEO

Lee is the sharp, motivated and inspiring team leader and president of KSG. His energy and enthusiasm are admirable and contagious. The wheels are always turning, and he's deeply passionate about improving lives, building great teams, and driving innovation.

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CONTACT

(864) 243-1673
lee@kestersearch.com

LinkedIn

In life, you have to take calculated risks, seize the day - Carpe diem! Lee Kester did just that when he left his stable, well-paying job to start his own recruiting company. Lee is passionate about the work he does and the role it plays in the “bigger picture.” Lee truly loves learning about exciting companies and innovative technologies as well as helping both clients and candidates accomplish their professional goals.

Over his career, Lee has won several awards such as President’s Club & Rookie of the year and has previously been responsible for training and mentoring back to back award winners at both KSG and his past company. As the founder of KSG, Lee has grown the company from 0 to 30+ healthcare clients ranging from start-ups to mid-market to Fortune 500 as well as has hired and built his own team to 7+ employees.

Lee also happens to be a passionate fly fisherman, University of Georgia Alumni, avid football fan, golfer, live music enthusiast, world traveler and most importantly, father of three amazing children and husband to a dynamic and incredibly supportive wife.

For a more in-depth look at Lee’s career, please visit his LinkedIn page.

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Michael Butler

Chief Growth Officer

For Michael, every day starts at zero, which means bringing a drive and determination to make a daily impact in all walks of life. While Michael's inability to slow down may drive his family crazy, it is what has propelled him to a long history of success in the recruiting field.

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CONTACT

(864) 373-1563
michael@kestersearch.com

LinkedIn

As a child, Michael dreamed of being a stock trader on Wall Street and chose to pursue a degree in Economics from Clemson University. Upon graduation, Michael started his career in banking before stumbling into an opportunity to get into the recruiting industry. He was very intrigued by the blend of sales, psychology, work ethic, and creativity necessary to be successful in recruiting.

Since 2004, Michael has worked with a variety of healthcare companies to help them secure the very best talent available in the market, demonstrating a unique ability to deliver on retained and senior-level searches. Today, Michael serves as Chief Growth Officer for Kester Search Group and as a husband and father to his amazing wife and three kids. When Michael is not acting as an Uber-driver for his children, he is helping KSG fine-tune, lead, and execute on their long-term growth strategies.

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Sarah Byrd

Sr. Executive Recruiter & Account Manager

Sarah’s dream growing up was to design prosthetics. After 2 years of Biomedical Engineering at Clemson University, she found that she enjoyed the technical side, but wanted more creativity and human interaction, so she changed majors and graduated cum laude in Graphic Communications.

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CONTACT

(864) 421-5498
sarah@kestersearch.com

LinkedIn

When Sarah landed at KSG in 2015, she felt like her journey had come full circle – she gets to interact with people every day, all while talking about the latest and greatest innovations in the medical industry.

As a Sr. Account Manager at KSG, Sarah finds it extremely rewarding to build lasting relationships and provide top-notch customer service to her clients. She also successfully serves as KSG's internal Director of Client Relations & Marketing. Sarah’s attention to detail and strong work ethic have driven her to excel at KSG.

In her free time, Sarah enjoys DIY home improvement projects and spending time with her husband and two children. In her spirit of always being prepared, Sarah has a tape measure on her at all times – you never know when a project idea could strike!

For a more in-depth look at Sarah’s career, please visit her LinkedIn page.

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Kate Wright

Sr. Executive Recruiter & Relationship Manager

An avid beach and animal lover, Kate grew up wanting to be a marine biologist. As she grew older though, she quickly discovered her passion for connecting people and building relationships. At KSG, Kate partners with senior leaders at innovative healthcare companies to help them find top talent as efficiently as possible.

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CONTACT

(864) 417-2172
kate@kestersearch.com

LinkedIn

Kate joined KSG in 2016 with 5 years of healthcare recruiting and business development experience. She found that this experience along with her Health Science degree from Clemson University, as well as the ability to talk to people from all walks of life, made a career in business development and recruiting a perfect fit! Kate loves science and enjoys learning about how KSG’s clients have innovative products and services that change lives for the better.

Kate still adores the beach and traveling. Trying new restaurants is also one of her favorite things to do – you can always count on her to have crushed red pepper on hand because she likes her food spicy!

For a more in-depth look at Kate’s career, please visit her LinkedIn page.

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Annaliese Stephanus

Sr. Executive Recruiter & Team Lead

Be somebody who makes everybody feel like a somebody. This is Annaliese’s mantra and is why she is so extraordinary at what she does. Her dedication, loyalty, and compassion are unparalleled.

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CONTACT

(864) 331-9251
annaliese@kestersearch.com

LinkedIn

Annaliese joined Kester Search Group in 2014. She is a top-notch recruiter, account manager, and KSG's internal Director of Recruiting Operations & Training. Not only do her degrees in Business Administration and Hospitality and Tourism Management from the College of Charleston give her an inherent understanding of business and people, but her experience studying abroad in China offered her deeper insight on various types of people and unfamiliar cultures. Annaliese loves meeting new people all across the country, discovering their professional goals, and helping them achieve those goals.

Annaliese’s passion for hiking and traveling led her to Oahu’s beautiful, yet daunting, Stairway to Heaven. The hike consists of approximately 4,000 stairs that took her up a mountain over 2,000 feet. Her experiences have led Annaliese to have an acute understanding that hard work and dedication can lead one to amazing places.

For a more in-depth look at Annaliese’s career, please visit her LinkedIn page.

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Lacie Vakos

Executive Recruiter & Sourcing Specialist

A lover of song lyrics who wanted to be a mermaid when she grew up, Lacie’s outgoing, warm, & driven personality ultimately led her to KSG.

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CONTACT

(864) 561-4546
lacie@kestersearch.com

LinkedIn

Lacie arrived at KSG in 2015 with over five years of customer service and sales experience. She has a passion for connecting qualified candidates with the job they desire. With an English and Creative Writing degree from the University of Maine, Lacie is able to use her creativity and resourcefulness to make successful connections.

“If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves.” Lacie lives by Thomas A. Edison’s quote and strives to help others do the same.

For a more in-depth look at Lacie’s career, please visit her LinkedIn page.

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Tom Kester

Chief Financial Officer

As a kid, Tom dreamed of becoming a brick mason but life had different plans and led him to Harvard, Cornell, Malta and a career in finance.

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CONTACT

(864) 420-4849
tom@kestersearch.com

LinkedIn

Tom has served as an advisor to KSG since its inception and in 2014 he officially became the Chief Financial Officer. His 28 years of experience at KPMG qualify him as a financial expert, but it’s his Harvard MBA and Cornell Engineering degrees that bring strategic and practical knowledge to the table and make him an invaluable member of the KSG team.

When Tom is not putting his volumes of expertise to use in one capacity or another, you might find this pragmatic, patient and honest man traveling the world, on top of the slopes or enjoying the company of his family.

For a more in-depth look at Tom’s career, please visit his LinkedIn page.

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Megan Jamison

Executive Recruiter & Operations Manager

Megan is known for being a passionate planner but she’s also not afraid of hopping on a plane for a spontaneous trip Japan!

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CONTACT

(864) 477-9726
megan@kestersearch.com

LinkedIn

Megan arrived at KSG with 6+ years of operations and sales and marketing experience. She graduated from Lander University with a degree in Business Administration and an emphasis in Healthcare Management.

Megan is excited to be assisting the team in all aspects of support, recruiting, marketing and daily operations. She loves planning, figuring out more efficient processes and maintaining organization that spills over into her personal life! You can always bet her bed is made.

For a more in-depth look at Megan’s career, please visit her LinkedIn page.

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Emily Hutmaker

Associate Recruiter & Support Specialist

It is a rare occasion to see Emily out and about without one or all three of her children (or her new black lab puppy). Emily and her husband, Cody, are Clemson graduates who have settled in her hometown of Greenville after living and loving life in Charleston.

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Emily graduated from Clemson University with a Bachelor of Science in Marketing and the College of Charleston with a Masters of Arts in Teaching. She comes with teaching experience as well as her most recent sales support role in orthopedic surgical sales.

Emily is excited to join the Kester Search Group team as an Associate Recruiter and Sales Support Specialist.

For a more in-depth look at Emily's career, please visit her LinkedIn page.

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Jordin Tedesco

Associate Recruiter & Digital Marketing Manager

As a little girl, Jordin loved theater and naturally, her dream was to be a movie star. She later decided that her outgoing, creative personality and passion to help others was well-suited to the world of Marketing and Communications.

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CONTACT

(201) 995-3761
jordin@kestersearch.com

LinkedIn

Majoring in Communication with a double minor in Management and Brand Communications at Clemson University allowed her to gain knowledge in a wide array of fields ranging from Public Relations, Brand Management, Marketing, and Human resources. Jordin loves that KSG values collaboration and authenticity. This enables her to work with coworkers on projects and use her creativity to build social media campaigns.

In her free time, Jordin loves to travel and listen to podcasts. Her favorite place to visit is Lake James in North Carolina, where she enjoys spending time at her family lake house water skiing and wakeboarding.

For a more in-depth look at Jordin’s career, please visit her LinkedIn page

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Join KSG

Would you make a great addition to the KSG Team? We are always on the lookout for business developers, account managers and executive recruiters. If you think you have what it takes, please submit your resume below.

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I am interested in:
(select all that apply)

  • Executive Recruiter
  • Business Development Manager
  • Account Manager

Thank you, but we currently have a full team.

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We guarantee to pour our resources into finding top-notch talent for you, bringing depth, determination and dedication to each and every recruiting project.

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