Vibrant, enthusiastic, dedicated and professional: the entire Castle Farms team takes great pride in working at this beautiful historic facility. Offering world-class customer service to all visitors and guests, visit us at the Castle and see what a difference our team makes!
Linda Mueller – Owner
Linda Mueller has always had a special love for castles. While dating Richard, her childhood sweetheart who had family ties to the Charlevoix area, Linda had an opportunity to visit the Castle…and promptly fell in love. Years later, happily married to Richard, Linda found herself able to fulfill a lifetime dream when the Castle was offered for sale. Purchased in 2001, Linda’s extensive renovations were completed in 2005, restoring the Castle to its original beauty. Today, Linda often can be found in one of her favorite places: strolling through one of the extensive gardens on the Castle grounds and dreaming of another garden. Linda’s vision of developing a world-class historic property incorporating old-world charm and timeless elegance continues to enchant visitors to this day.
Anora O’Connor – General Manager
Anora has the unique experience of having been a member of the Castle Farms team since its inception in 2003. Her managerial responsibilities are a direct result of her leadership training and expertise in working with people, including extensive experience and wisdom in event planning as well as weddings. She is a Certified Professional Wedding Coordinator through the Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants and has personally coordinated hundreds of weddings. Working directly with the local Chambers to actively promote Castle Farms, Anora’s persistence and passion were recognized in 2011 when she was awarded the East Jordan Chamber of Commerce Ambassador of the Year Award. Anora has great passion for Castle Farms and a desire for the organization to be a continued asset and jewel to the community.
Sarah Hagen – Tasting Room Manager
Sarah, a native of Charlevoix and 2011 graduate of Grand Valley State University, has worked at Castle Farms in various capacities since 2006. Her degree in Hospitality and Tourism Management, plus her years of experience at the Castle, assisted Sarah as she stepped up to embrace a leadership role with the Castle Farms wedding team as Events Director from 2014-2018. In 2018, Sarah stepped into a new role with the opening of 1918 Cellars, Castle Farms’ wine tasting room, becoming the Tasting Room Manager. Sarah’s commitment to excellence, her enthusiasm for the Castle, and her calm gentle demeanor benefit everyone she works with, be they Castle staff, event clients, or tasting room guests.
Brittany Maggrett – Lead Venue Coordinator
Brittany, a native of Michigan, grew up in Charlevoix. Her joyful spirit and attention to detail, plus three years prior experience in the hospitality field, made Brittany a natural fit when she first joined the Castle Farms Team in 2012. She has since worked in several different capacities including Welcome Center Attendant, Assistant to the General Manager, Assistant Venue Coordinator, and Venue Coordinator. Brittany’s calm demeanor and years of experience planning community events and coordinating weddings provided a solid foundation for her to step into the Lead Venue Coordinator position in 2018. Brittany and her team commit to help make each couple’s wedding day magical and memorable!
Autumn Tall – Venue Coordinator
Autumn joined the Castle Team as an Assistant Venue Coordinator in April of 2015, was moved up to the Event Supervisor position before the end of the year, and now holds a position as a Venue Coordinator. Originally from Charlevoix, she was excited to move back to her hometown to pursue a career involving event management. She received her degree in Business Administration with a concentration on Events Planning from Kaplan University. Her studies, combined with her extensive experience in customer service and team management, lend well to her position here assisting Castle clients and the Castle team.
Brandyn Davis – Venue Coordinator
Brandyn was born in Petoskey but was raised in many cities throughout Michigan. He served four years in the Air Force as an Aircraft Electrical and Environmental Systems Specialist. Brandyn has worked in various positions around the Castle for three years. He is intelligent, laid back, and a great sense of humor which makes him an easy person to work with. Plus, having experience behind the scenes as Set-Up Crew, Assistant Coordinator and Events Supervisor, he has been a part of every detail that goes into a wedding, which in turn makes him a great Venue Coordinator.
Matthew CasaSanta – Venue Coordinator
Matthew started working with Castle Farms in March of 2017. Originally from Rochester Hills, Michigan, but moved around a bit because of his dad’s job in the automotive industry. He attended Adrian College where he studied Sociology and received tons of practice with event planning through his fraternity. Matt is organized, creative and energetic which makes him an excellent Venue Coordinator and a fun guy to work with at the Castle.
Rebekah Moser – Venue Specialist
Rebekah, a native of Michigan and graduate of Central Michigan University, grew up in Charlevoix and joined the Castle team in January 2015. Her position as Venue Specialist puts her in direct contact with couples contacting the Castle for the very first time. Rebekah’s attention to detail, personable style and natural friendly charm translate into a plus for everyone she works with. Married to her high school sweetheart, Rebekah and her husband had the wedding of their dreams. She’s excited to assist Castle couples in helping make their own wedding dreams a reality.
Kayla Kuzel – Venue Specialist
Kayla, a native of Charlevoix, has been a member of the Castle Team since April 2015. Her interest in history brought her to the Castle, where she quickly assumed a role in the Wedding Department. Kayla’s soft demeanor, friendly personality, and strong organizational skills have proved an asset to the Castle Team. In October 2016, Kayla became a Castle bride herself, as she and her husband exchanged vows in the beautiful Queen’s Courtyard.
Jessica Anderson – Gift Shop Director
Jessica, a 2012 graduate of Lake Superior State University, is responsible for managing the daily operations of the Castle Gift Shop, as well as purchasing, displaying and marketing the inventory. Jessica’s credentials are impressive, and she is no stranger to the business world. With over twelve years experience in the retail industry, her energy and enthusiasm, plus avid eye for detail, have resulted in a fantastical combination of treasures available to guests visiting the Gift Shop. And for those ‘just looking’, Jessica’s winning smile and infectious personality make for the start of a pleasant experience for visitors arriving at the Castle’s Welcome Center.
Nikki Louiselle – Group Tour Specialist
Nikki started at the Castle in the spring of 2016 and quickly became a hit with tour operators. Her friendly personality and strong organizational skills means that all “i”s are dotted and “t”s are crossed while maintaining a positive presence, both on the phone and in person. Nikki loves to make each coach tour bus visiting the Castle feel welcomed and ensures that they have an outstanding experience.
Alissa Post – Marketing Director
Alissa, a graduate of Spring Arbor University and native of Charlevoix, has worked at the Castle since 2006. Her transition from the Wedding Department to Marketing in autumn ‘14 was a natural occurrence, given the Castle’s continued growth and development and Alissa’s broad-based knowledge and extensive work experience. She enjoys the challenge of creating and overseeing marketing campaigns designed to benefit all areas of the Castle, including weddings, corporate, festivals, events, and tours. Whether coordinating marketing and business concerns, creating and organizing budget reports, or working with aesthetic design, Alissa’s savvy computer skills have proved invaluable. She’s also the Castle’s ‘Go-To’ Person when it comes to hands-on computer program training for Castle staff.
Amanda Brown – Marketing & PR
Amanda is originally from Farmington Hills, MI and graduated from Central Michigan University with a Bachelor of Applied Arts. She moved to Charlevoix in July 2017 for a summer job at the Castle. She started as an Assistant Venue Coordinator and Gift Shop Associate, where she enjoyed interacting with the different guests that came to the Castle. In October she was asked to join Marketing & PR because of her creative background and enthusiasm. She is excited to see what this next year brings being a part of the Castle Team.
Peggy Kusina – Castle Ambassador
Peggy Kusina has been with the Castle since 2006. Her former responsibilities included managing and buying for the Gift Shop, as well as marketing historic tours. Under her direction, the Gift Shop and Welcome Center grew to be a proud showcase for Castle Farms. In 2013/2014, Peggy stepped down as Gift Shop and Tour Director, and now serves in an official capacity as Castle Ambassador. Peggy is also an Ambassador for the Charlevoix Chamber of Commerce. Her passion for the Castle and the Charlevoix community serves her well in her role as avid spokeswoman for both Castle Farms and the Northern Michigan area.
Carol Prevo – Administrative Assistant
Carol joined the Castle team in the spring of 2016 and became the “mama bear” of the office, taking care of everyone’s needs while keeping things running smoothly. Her role evolved to include bookkeeping as her attention to detail and passion for organization became apparent. Carol now conducts first round interviews for all departments to help with the selection process.
Brittany Beckman – Housekeeping Supervisor
Brittany joined the Castle team in 2016 and moved up to Housekeeping Supervisor in 2017. Originally from Ellsworth, she supervised the housekeeping department in Bay Harbor prior to coming to the Castle. Her attention to detail keeps the Castle looking great for guests, while her friendly demeanor means that she offers a big smile to everyone she meets. Her daughter Ruby as well as her love of art, photography, and nature keeps her active. Always looking for ways to improve, Brittany is a wonderful addition to the team.
Brianna Clark – Set-Up Supervisor
Brianna is originally from Cadillac, MI but moved to Charlevoix in 2017 for better job opportunities and schooling for her kids. She started working at Castle Farms as an Assistant Venue Coordinator and Gift Shop Associate in April of 2017. By October she moved up to the position as Setup and Event Staff Supervisor, because her initiative and creativity made her a great fit. In her new position, she is happy to be involved behind the scenes to watch every wedding and event come together. As a Criminal Justice major, she stepped outside of her comfort zone joining the Castle Team but the unique opportunities and family friendly atmosphere made her want to stay.
David Ruehle – Maintenance Director
David, raised in the Charlevoix area, has been a part of the Castle Farms team since 2007. With prior work experience in the building and equipment maintenance field, David earned his certifications as a licensed builder, plus EPA 608, and HVAC. David’s responsibilities include internal IT support, telecommunications repair, building and accessory equipment repair, plus overseeing the maintenance department. His vast knowledge of the inner workings of the Castle and his intrinsic ability to problem solve at a moment’s notice make David a valuable resource for the Castle team.
Clay Soulliere – Maintenance
Clay, born and raised in Charlevoix, joined the Castle Farms Team in July 2015. With a retail background spanning over 20 years, Clay’s position with the Maintenance Department has proved a perfect fit. His specific talents include a proclivity for troubleshooting IT issues, organizing and managing maintenance projects, and being the Maintenance Department’s all-around ‘Go-To’ Guy. With his winning smile, patient attitude, and steady perseverance for dedicating himself to whatever challenge asked of him, Clay is proving a valuable asset to the Castle Farms family.
Kirk Gunderson – Maintenance
Originally from nearby Boyne City, Kirk moved to Charlevoix in 2005. He had 25 years experience working apartment complex maintenance prior to joining the Castle team in October 2016. His tasks are varied while supporting the maintenance department, including painting and general upkeep of the property, driving the tram for guided tours, and even taking care of the model trains on occasion. A smiling, friendly guy, he is great with people and enjoys interacting with guests as much as he can, often offering to take photos of groups, enhancing their experience while providing great memories.
Walter Johnson – Chief Engineer
After moving to Northern Michigan, Walter joined the Castle Farms team in 2010. With a degree in mechanical drafting and autoCAD from Lincoln Tech in Allentown, Pennsylvania, Walter is the perfect choice to be Chief Engineer of the Castle’s Model Railroad. His primary responsibility is to keep each of the 160+ G-scale trains chugging up and down the tracks, taking the curves and zipping across the bridges making up the ½ mile of railroad track comprising Michigan’s largest model railroad. Walter’s skills in technical support and design are crucial to the success of the trains, and his friendly demeanor and penchant for answering questions are a bonus for guests visiting the Castle’s Model Railroad.
Chet Drenth – Gardener
Chet Drenth never met a flower he didn’t like! Born and raised in Northern Michigan, Chet grew up on a farm, which nurtured his love for the great outdoors. After proudly serving his country as a Vietnam vet, he returned home to Charlevoix the Beautiful, and settled down to raise a family. Retired after working 37 years for a local business, Chet’s passion for flowers bloomed into a seasonal job at the Castle, and he enjoys tending the variety of annuals and perennials flowering in the gardens. He loves grasses, and their free-forming stance of blowing with the wind. Chet’s favorite flower is the rose. The Castle gardens provide plenty of beautiful nearly thornless roses to keep him busy throughout the summer months and well into the fall.