none MEET THE HEST TEAM - Hest Fitness Products
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Albert & Paula Kessler, Owners & Founders  

hest fitness owner

In 1981, Albert and Paula founded HEST Fitness Products (Health Equipment of South Texas) in Corpus Christi. What began as a hobby, developed into a full service business as Albert discovered a void in the fitness industry that needed to be filled. Albert’s previous welding experience enabled him to design and build prototypes; he then discovered that there were manufacturers in the U.S. already making the quality equipment he was seeking. This enabled the young company to change their focus and direct it towards educating its customers and providing unmatched service. Albert and Paula understand that the best way to serve the customer is to employ the best people in the industry, maintain high standards of product quality, and to strive to always anticipate and exceed the customer’s expectations. The team members at HEST Fitness Products strive to maintain the company’s dynamic growth and make their standards of quality and excellence available to everyone!

HEST has since expanded into other cities and still remains a leader in the specialty fitness industry for over 43 years.

Joseph Gonzalez, General Manager


Exercise and Sports have been a constant in my life since I was a child. From competitive baseball to track and football year round, I would have never had time to even think about a computer or cell phone! At 19 years of age I was a Collegiate All-American at Blinn College, which led to me being drafted by the Montreal Expos, which in turn started my 10 year 1000 plus game career in Minor League Baseball. After traveling many miles and meeting many people, I learned and grew to appreciate everything that life has to offer. After studyin Exercise Science at McNeese State University I have accrued over 31 years of fitness sales experience and with over 34 years of retail management experience. Working at Hest and in the fitness industry is my passion and serving our customers and employees has been an honor and privilege.

Steve Byerley, Assistant General Manager, Corpus Christi

Steve Byerley

With over 38 years in the fitness industry and over 50 years as a fitness enthusiast myself, I know a thing or two or three.  I love sharing what I know with Hest Fitness Products customers whether it be setting up a beautiful home fitness room; or decking out a full-blown health club; or anything between.  

After owning and managing health clubs in the 80’s, I came to work at Hest Fitness Products.  I obviously believe in what we do and how we do it concerning the facilitating of our customers fitness and wellness needs. 

Whether your fitness equipment needs are residential or commercial, I can make sure your experience at Hest Fitness Products is a most enjoyable venture. 

Roland Brown, Jr., Store Manager, San Antonio

Roland Brown, Jr

Hi, I’m Roland Brown, Jr., and I’ve dedicated the past three decades to making a meaningful impact in the fitness industry. My journey began in 1983 when, as a professional dancer, I transitioned into the world of fitness as an aerobics instructor in Las Vegas, NV. Shortly after, I made my way to Los Angeles, CA, where I joined the Nautilus Aerobics Plus health club chain as an aerobics and fitness instructor, eventually earning the role of Aerobics Manager at the Culver City, CA location.

In September 1984, I embraced a full-time career as an independent personal trainer, marking the commencement of a diverse and enriching experience within the fitness realm. From basic fitness instruction to studio ownership, I’ve traversed every facet of the industry, gaining valuable insights into its evolution over the years.

Recognizing early on that the primary focus of a fitness professional should be to empower individuals in managing their own physical health and well-being, I have concentrated my efforts on personal training and wellness coaching. Throughout my extensive career, I’ve witnessed and contributed to the various phases of the modern fitness industry, ranging from programming to promotion.

My mission has always been to instill a common sense approach to building a strong, healthy body and living a physically fit life. Over the course of more than 30 years, I’ve had the privilege of positively impacting the lives of thousands of health-conscious individuals. Through personalized training and wellness coaching, I strive to empower every willing person to take charge of their physical well-being.

As a fitness consultant at Hest Fitness Products in San Antonio, I continue to bring my passion and expertise to help individuals achieve their fitness goals, contributing to a healthier and more active community.

Michael Schoggins, Operations Manager, San Antonio

Micheal Schoggins, Operation Manager at Hest Fitness Products, San Antonio

Michael Schoggins, a native of San Antonio, has been an integral part of the Hest Fitness team since 2016, initially joining as a delivery technician and subsequently diversifying his role to encompass various aspects of the business, including sales.

Driven by a passion for witnessing individuals achieve their personal fitness goals, Michael prioritizes building meaningful connections with clients tailored to their unique needs and aspirations. He thrives on one-on-one interactions and finds immense fulfillment in receiving customer feedback on how Hest Fitness has contributed to their success stories.

Michael’s tenure at Hest has underscored the significance of maintaining an active lifestyle, prompting him to prioritize personal fitness to ensure he can fully enjoy his favorite outdoor activities. Whether tending to his garden or spending a day out on the lake, Michael finds solace and joy in the great outdoors, relishing the freedom and tranquility it offers. An avid angler, he humorously acknowledges that while his fishing excursions may often result in little more than a sunburn, the experience itself is incomparable.

With a commitment to fostering both personal and communal well-being, Michael Schoggins embodies Hest Fitness’s ethos of promoting holistic health and vitality.

Jose C. Partida (Joey), Commercial Account Sales Manager: McAllen & San Antonio

 Jose C. Partida (Joey)

We are delighted to introduce Jose C. Partida, known as Joey, a pivotal member of our commercial sales division at Hest Fitness Products. Joey plays a crucial role in helping our clients and community look better, feel better, and do more.

With over 15 years in the fitness and wellness industry, Joey’s passion for sports began in his youth, engaging in football, soccer, track, and baseball, while also exploring theater and film. His academic and creative pursuits showcase his dedication and versatility.

Joey graduated in the top 10% of his class from James Nikke Rowe High School in 1998 and earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Texas Pan American, now UTRGV. His career has focused on fitness center design and sales, where his deep understanding of business and wellness has made a significant impact.

Outside work, Joey is a dedicated family man, married to his high school sweetheart, with whom he has three children. The family also includes two beloved dogs, a Frenchie named Shelby and a Corgi named Bruno. Joey enjoys automotive work, culinary arts, and fishing—activities that highlight his practical skills and commitment to a balanced lifestyle.

In his professional role, Joey excels in serving commercial clients, helping them design and equip fitness spaces that cater to their specific needs. His expertise and personal touch make him a trusted advisor in fostering environments that promote health and wellness. Joey’s efforts help organizations embrace fitness, thereby enhancing well-being for many.

Alfonso “Al” Guzman, Sales & Service Technician, McAllen

Al Guzman

I have been in the fitness industry for over 30 years. I came to work for Hest in 1993 in the delivery/assembly department and after nine months, I advanced into the store manager position. I served as the McAllen store manager from 1994 to 2009, left for one year and then rejoined the team as the Service manager. I have been back with Hest Fitness since 2011 and have since been certified through the Precor Service Team in cardiovascular equipment and entertainment systems. I guess you could say I know the ins and outs of this business. 

Roland Untalan, Fitness Consultant & Lead Service Technician, San Antonio

Roland Untalan is a key member of our Hest Fitness Products team in San Antonio. Since joining us in 2012, he has excelled in dual roles as our lead service technician and as a commercial & retail fitness sales consultant.

Roland brings a unique depth to his work, rooted in an extensive military career. He served in the United States Marine Corps and the Army Reserve, where physical fitness was not just a routine but a crucial part of life. His tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, and a time in Okinawa, Japan, instilled a lifelong commitment to fitness and wellness. This background now drives his passion for helping our customers achieve their fitness goals.

Back home in San Antonio with his wife, Roland is a devoted father of two and a grandfather to nine grandchildren. His commitment to family and community is mirrored in his dedication to every client he serves.