Meet Our Team

Connie Karstens, MS

Founder & President

For 30 years, Connie and her husband, Doug, have worked on their 180-acre sustainable livestock farm where sheep and other livestock are grazed. In 1996,

they opened a specialty on-farm USDA processing facility and retail store called the Lamb Shoppe. Connie offers private wellness consultations incorporating whole foods nutrition, herbs, stress management techniques, and other natural remedies to support and build overall health and re-balance the body.

Doug Rathke

Shepherd & Sheep Shearer

Doug is the shepherd and sheep shearer of the livestock at the Lamb Shoppe Farm. Doug has been shearing sheep for 35 years and shears with both machine and hand blades. Although he mostly shears farm flocks in the Midwestern United States, he also has had a variety of shearing experience throughout the US and abroad.

Clara Rathke,MH, CHES®, CHNC

Managing Director

Clara Rathke became interested in holistic health at a young age due to her own personal health struggles. Clara holds a MS in Herbal Medicine (MH) and is certified in Holistic Nutrition Consulting (CHNC) from American College of Healthcare Sciences. Also, she has been a Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES®) since 2017. Also, in 2017, she joined the family business as a second-generation business partner. As a Master Naturalist, Clara has a passion for nature, plants, and holistic wellness. Clara enjoys coordinating educational classes & events for the public and strives to help empower health and wellness in the community. 

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Aimee Hornburg

Shoppe Assistant

Aimee joined the Lamb Shoppe Team in October 2021.  Aimee and her husband, Greg of 25 years have two wonderful children together.  She has worked in retail over 30 years.  For many years she has worked in the herbal and holistic areas.  She has taken many of Connie’s classes and even her first herbalist class.  She enjoys spending time with her family and friends.  Her hobbies include gardening and foraging for herbs.  She is excited to be joining the team at the Lamb Shoppe and looks forward to seeing you at the Shoppe.

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Marty Ochs

Shoppe Assistant

Marty joined the Lamb Shoppe Team in June 2021. Marty spent her earlier adult years working with horses, and periodically  throughout her married life as well.  She has also spent much of her life in the art world as a muralist, sign painter and fine artist. When her husband became sick with Lyme disease, she learned the importance of whole foods and healthy cooking.  With their two sons now grown, she is thrilled to join the Lamb Shoppe team and promote holistic health!

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Hannah Mahlstedt

Shoppe Assistant

Hannah joined the Lamb Shoppe Team in August 2022. Hannah grew up learning the importance of herbs, supplements, and natural foods in everyday life. She loves being active outdoors, gardening, canning, cooking, writing songs, singing, and playing various instruments. She also has a passion for making natural cleaners and soaps along with other things for her enjoyment. In the spring of 2022, she took her Doula certification, she loves supporting women in their pregnancy, labor, birth & postpartum. Being part of the natural foods world is a lifestyle she loves to share and continually learn about.

Patty Thorwardson

Gardener & Grounds Keeper

Patty joined the Lamb Shoppe team in May 2020. She helps keep up our beautiful Herbal Garden and greenhouse tidy so that we can offer fresh produce and herbs in the Shoppe grown right here on our farm. Patty is an independent BEMER Distributor with a passion for helping people realize their health options. Patty has logged over 100 hours of formal training on the usage and application of the BEMER, FDA class II registered medical device. Patty & John have helped hundreds of people and animals over the last five years.