Kimmel Orchard Staff

Welcome to the Kimmel Orchard Staff page. Please scroll down to find out more information about each of our talented staff members and their role.

Kimmel Orchard Staff

Jennie Tachovsky
General Manager

Jennie joined the Kimmel Orchard family in July 2021 as General Manager. Her responsibilities include marketing the educational values of Kimmel Orchard and Vineyard Educational Foundation and managing all aspects of the Orchard and Apple Barn. Jennie graduated from Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota, with a Bachelor of Arts in English and a specialization in Desktop Publishing. Jennie lives in Nebraska City with her two sons, Brixton and Jaxon, and her partner Dean Shissler. Before joining Kimmel Orchard, she worked as a Sales and Promotions Director. She loves spending her free time playing games and having adventures with her kids and Dean or curling up with a good book. Jennie is looking forward to continuing Kimmel Orchard’s educational mission and maintaining a fun place for families to enjoy!


Jesse Mendez
Orchard Team Leader

Jesse has worked in the orchard business for over 20 years and has extensive knowledge in caring for fruit trees. He loves his work and puts passion into everything he does. Apart from being a great leader in the orchard, Jesse loves being outdoors, and he prides himself in making Kimmel Orchard a destination stop for guests and their families. 

Cami Ruiz
Operations Team Lead

Cami is from Bogota, Colombia. She is a 2021 Peru State College graduate. While in college, Cami played volleyball for Peru and achieved Mathematics and Accounting majors. Cami's role at Kimmel Orchard & Vineyard combines accounting and inventory management to help us run smoothly. She looks forward to accomplishing numerous goals in her life and being a part of the Kimmel Orchard & Vineyard Family.

Allison Carpenter
Business and Marketing Intern

Allison is from Scottsbluff, Nebraska. She will be a sophomore in the fall at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. At college, she is double majoring in Agribusiness and Agriculture Education and minoring in the Engler Agribusiness Entrepreneurship Program. Over the next few months, Allison will be working with General Manager Jennie Tachovsky to learn what it takes to run Kimmel Orchard & Vineyard and other aspects of marketing and business operations. 

Johanna Stelljes
Orchard Operations and Landscaping Intern

Johanna is from New Ulm, a town in South-Central Minnesota. The upcoming fall is her last semester at the University of Minnesota-Crookston. She is majoring in Horticulture, with an emphasis in Greenhouse Production and Environmental Landscaping. This summer, Johanna is working with Jesse in the orchard. She is excited to learn the ins and outs of managing an orchard!

Madison Kreifels
Business and Marketing Intern

Madison is from Syracuse, Nebraska. She will be a sophomore at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln this coming fall. She is majoring in Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Communication and double minoring in the Engler Agribusiness Entrepreneurship Program and Broadcasting with the Media option. This summer, Madison will also be working with General Manager Jennie Tachovsky on creating videos for Kimmel Orchard & Vineyard.