Meet Jake Kessler, a landscape designer and sales team member at Eagle Nursery (eaglenurseries.com).
Tell us a little about your business. – Eagle Nursery is a full-service landscaping company offering residential and commercial landscaping design and installation, landscape maintenance, hardscapes, landscape lighting, tree spading services and snow removal.
How did you get started in the business? – I got started in this business through a friend. I knew sitting behind a desk was not for me, so he encouraged, hired and trained me in the field. I have since spent the last 20 years in the landscape business.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced professionally? – Weather can hinder production greatly with its unpredictability. From rain preventing a design from getting completed on time to snow coming at unexpected times; it can strongly impact our work at times. Maintaining sustainable crews through this can often be a challenge as well; the work is not easy.
What has been your most important achievement professionally? – Earning the trust of my teammates and clients through Eagle Nursery is a powerful achievement for me. Communication and transparency are vital in our business, and I am thankful that I have earned this with my team.
Tell us a little about your family. – I am married to my wife, Jessica. We have three sons: Jackson (18), Jameson (5) and Joey (2). Jackson is headed to college in the fall, and Jameson to Kindergarten. We enjoy traveling, especially to Lake Okoboji, and are greatly involved in sports.
What do you see as one of the biggest turning points in your life? – Meeting my wife was an integral point in my life. We have been able to establish a life of faith, family and success. Together we thrive on not only raising the best humans we can, but being strong role models for those around us.
What is your favorite thing to do on a day off? – On a day off I enjoy relaxing with the family (even though I cannot sit still long), and watching our sons play and do the things that bring them joy, especially basketball.
Who inspires you? – My family. They always challenge me to be the best version of myself.
What is your favorite quote or the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? – “Your eyes are on the front of your head for a reason – always look forward, not to the past.”
If you could choose only one descriptive word to be remembered as, what would it be? – Selfless.
If you could have a super power, what would it be? – To fly.
Which talent would you most like to have? – I would appreciate having stronger organization skills. I am very dedicated and hardworking, but my organization skills could improve.
If you could choose any other profession to be successful in, what would it be? – Construction Management or Developer. I enjoy the fields of design and construction, along with the relationships you build and need to finish a project.
What local nonprofit organization(s) are you passionate about or involved with, and are there any special reasons why? – Matt Talbot Kitchen and Outreach. They support our local community 365 days a year.
What is your favorite book or the last good book you read? – My favorite book growing up was Where the Red Fern Grows.
What is your favorite movie? – Braveheart.
What is your favorite TV show? – Survivor.
What is your favorite local restaurant? – Brewsky’s.
If you could have dinner with one famous person from the past or present, who would it be? – Larry Bird.