In a career that has spanned nearly 25 years, Jennifer Nessler knew from early on that she could provide an online presence to an industry that was struggling to reach new markets.
The Lodi Woodbridge Winegrape Commission hired Jennifer as an administrative assistant in 1995 to take care of a multitude of office duties, one of which involved marketing the LWWC. In an effort to expand its reach, it was decided to hire an outside designer to create the organization’s website.
Jennifer didn’t care for the newly instituted website for the LWWC and voiced her displeasure. Having a strong sense of design, Jennifer knew she could create a better portal that would welcome each site visitor and provide them with the information and resources sought.
“I asked my boss if he would give me a chance to design something,” Jennifer said. “He did, and (when I was finished creating it) he loved it.”
Since Jennifer’s duties still included answering phones, she recalls receiving several inquiries into who designed the LWWC’s website. Many were impressed with how well designed and intuitive the site was. Several of them ended up hiring me on the side to design their sites…and my business was born.
As she was still building her client base, Jennifer went to work for the Chilean Fresh Fruit Association (CFFA) in 1999. She worked as the organization’s assistant marketing director, managing office staff and merchandisers across the United States and Canada as well as cross promotions such as Chilean fresh fruit and Robert Mondavi’s Chilean wine. The position gave her the ability to work on in-store merchandising and cross-promotion checks with the merchandisers since she routinely went to various regions to work on those marketing programs.
And then came a pivotal moment in Jennifer’s career. She had the idea to create a website that listed in-depth information on fruit varietals and each one’s nutritional value as well as recipes. The project was halted when the budget and time ran out.
“I had planned on staying on with CFFA to maintain this website and continue with marketing, but when the project was shut down, I realized this is what I want to do and ONLY what I want to do. I decided to officially create my own business and do web and graphic design full-time,” Jennifer said.
In 2003, AgriDesigns Web Development and Design was born. For 16 years she has helped hundreds of wineries, orchards, farms and various other businesses find their homes online.
In 2019 potential customers began to tell me that they weren’t initially contacting me because they thought I only worked with ag business. I quickly began to realize I was missing out on a lot of work due to my business name so in 2020, with a love for design and the ocean, Make Waves Design LLC was created. With an ever-evolving virtual landscape to navigate, Jennifer has remained committed to helping her clients — no matter what industry they’re in — stay relevant and engaged with customers.
Even in her rare downtime, Jennifer is working on web design.
“I donate my time to design and maintain the Animal Friends Connection website,” she said. “I also donate time to Lodi House, an organization that houses, supports and counsels homeless women and children.”