Meet the Pekin Veterinary Clinic Staff
Dr. Joel Jess
I am a 1986 graduate of Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine. I acquired my love of animals growing up on a cow-calf farm in western Iowa. I knew I wanted to be a veterinarian since I was ten or eleven years old. I guess I was lucky to know what I wanted to do with my life at an early age. Combining my love for animals and medicine has allowed me to live a fulfilling, wonderful life.
Although I enjoy all aspects of veterinary medicine, my areas of special interest include gastroenterology, soft tissue and orthopedic surgery, and canine rehabilitation. I became certified in canine rehabilitation through the University of Tennessee in 2005. Practicing medicine gives me a great deal of pleasure when I can help not only our four legged friends but the owners as well. I strive to offer an array of options according to the owners’ desires. Flexibility is the key when consulting clients, and I try to provide the most current options and treatments available. I continue to update my professional skills to meet those demands. My passion is to help patients and their moms and dads with the most compassionate and complete care I can provide.
My pets include an independent tabby cat named Tuesday and a very soft-hearted, smart English Shepard named Lance. When not practicing medicine I enjoy spending time with my family, playing "over the hill" baseball, fishing, working at our Virginia, IL, land, and umpiring girls' senior and junior high softball. I've been practicing veterinary medicine for 30 years and love doing so more now than when I started.
Dr. Patricia Winston
I graduated from the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine in 2013. After graduation, I worked for a year at a small animal clinic near Indianapolis, IN. My husband and I moved to Pekin in the fall of 2014 to be closer to our families.
I've known that I wanted to be a veterinarian since I can remember (except for a brief phase where I wanted to be a magician). Growing up on a grain farm near Decatur helped foster my love of animals; we always had stray cats and kittens that needed taken care of, a farm dog to play with outside, and / tadpoles in the creek that I would catch and keep until they were frogs. I married my husband, Brett, just before starting veterinary school and we had our first daughter, Michaela, shortly after I graduated.
The four-legged members of our household include a German Shorthaired Pointer named Gauge, a medium-sized mutt named Dixie, and a leopard gecko named Garfunkel. In my time away from the clinic, I enjoy spending time with family and friends, exploring the outdoors, painting, deer hunting, and cooking.
Dr. Allisun Bennett
I am originally a Missourian and received both my undergraduate in Animal Science and DVM from the University of Missouri in Columbia. I practiced both large and small animal medicine in Wyoming, IL. It was a great time of growth and learning and even though it can be incredibly hard work, I do miss pulling baby calves!
During the fall of 2016, I married my husband Paul, became a step-mom to a wonderful little girl named Anna, and started working at Pekin Veterinary Clinic. Our family is rounded out by a very social feline named Kirby, and we expect a new (human) addition this fall!
As a Veterinarian, I like to emphasize preventative veterinary care through good dental practices, proper nutrition, and appropriate vaccination.
One of the many reasons I love working at Pekin Veterinary Clinic includes the ability to work with skilled, compassionate, and well-trained staff and doctors. We're all a team and I couldn't function a day here without them!
Dr. Brittany Propst
I was actually born in Decatur, Illinois, but grew up my whole life in Oklahoma, where I was raised a Sooner fan attending every home football game! It was not until this awesome job, where I get the opportunity to care for your kiddos, that I moved back to my roots- boyfriend and fur babies in tow. I always knew I wanted to be a veterinarian. I only ever waivered twice: once when I tore my ACL and I thought PT would be fun, and once when "Legally Blonde" came out and going to Harvard sounded easy.
After several years of caring for stuffed animals, I fulfilled a life-long dream of being a true Sooner and went to the University of Oklahoma. After four years, however, I had to go up state to "the other school". It was at Oklahoma State University that I received my doctorate in Veterinary Medicine.
Now I am happy to say that I live here in Pekin. My boyfriend and I have a 7-year-old lab/shepherd mix named Abby and a 15-year-old Schipperke named Chauncey. In my spare time, I love being with family, catching up on movies and Disney, and just being outside. I am a kid at heart, and if you get me started on Disney or Harry Potter I could talk to you all day! I look forward to getting to know you and your fur kids and helping you all in the best way I can! See you soon!
Dr. Libbie Fort
I graduated from The Oklahoma State Center for Veterinary Health Sciences in 2015. Pekin is my hometown and as much as I loved Oklahoma, I was excited to move back and be closer to family and friends.
I started my undergraduate degree at the University of Illinois in Aviation. After obtaining my pilots license at the age of 18, I decided flying (especially solo!) wasn't for me. My heart was still with the animals and in medicine. So, I switched my major to pre-vet and while in veterinary school I started competing in triathlon and Ironman events to help channel the extra energy that comes with stress.
These days I enjoy the daily challenges this profession brings me. I love connecting with clients and their lovely pets. I find myself learning something new every day, and within this field there are endless opportunities for personal and professional growth. When I'm not at work, I enjoy riding my bike on the local and not so local mountain bike trails, spending time with my family, my friends, and my dog Walter who came home with me from vet school.
I am one of the farmer's daughters of this team. Growing up on a dairy farm in western Iowa I was surrounded by animals and could often be found tagging around under the feet of the veterinarian. How funny that I ended up married to one!
A 1982 graduate of Iowa State University, I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Interior Design. I enjoyed my design career for several years until Dr. Jess and I purchased the Pekin Veterinary Clinic in 1990. At that time, I began my second enjoyable career in veterinary management. Many classes and seminars later I have grown into this career as the clinic has grown. I now work as the Hospital Administrator managing our team of professionals, overseeing hiring and training, keeping tabs on the financials, assisting in the purchase of equipment and keeping our team up with the latest in continuing education and training.
Dr. Jess and I have three amazing children that have grown up to be wonderful adults. We are enjoying watching them make their way in the world. To fill the quiet in the house we brought home Lance. Lance is a high energy English Shepard who always has a big smile on his face. He is a total "momma's boy" and loves to go anywhere I go, including my office. His favorite past time is running and I with I had something for him to herd as he would totally love that. His brother Finn is owned by our daughter and her husband and is Lance's best friend. They are all boy when together and play, rough house, and tease one another constantly.
Our veterinary practice has been one of the biggest joys and challenges for me personally over the years. I have enjoyed the opportunity to get to know many of our wonderful clients and their pets. I have also enjoyed the challenge of designing and overseeing the building of Aboard the Ark in 1998, and the designing and renovation of the veterinary hospital in 2007. These projects provide me with the necessary "right brain" creative thinking I need to survive, combining my interior design expertise with my knowledge of veterinary medicine. The result is our beautiful facility designed to make us more efficient and able to practice better medicine for you and your pets.
I am enjoy serving you and my team at Pekin Veterinary Clinic. My office is not near the front of the building, so I am a bit more isolated than I used to be, but don't let that stop you from asking for me and saying "hello" when you are here. I will be ahappy to give you a "behind the scenes" tour or just catch up a bit with one another.
Human Resources Specialist
I have been involved in the veterinary industry my entire life. I started working at Aboard the Ark when I was 14 and continued working regularly until I went to college. Even then, I came back home and worked at the Ark over the summer and during holiday breaks. I stepped away from PVC for a few years while pursuing my graduate degree and working as a therapist; however, I just couldn’t stay away. I am now working as a receptionist and exam room assistant, and I truly enjoy what I do!
My husband Tommy and I have three furry children. Martin, our oldest kitty, is a sweet cuddle bug. Pepper is our youngest kitty. She is a spunky, tiny tabby who loves to play. Our newest family member is Finn, an English Shepherd who is very smart and loves attention. They keep us busy when we’re not working, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.
I’ve lived in Pekin all my life. I have two great kids of my own, and married Michael in 2009, and now we have five great kids combined. As for my animal family, we have four dogs, Toby, my wonderful lab, my collection of poodles, Jackson, Tucker and Buckley, and then there is Giles, who doesn't know he is a cat. He can sit, shake paws and even roll over. I enjoy crocheting and taking care of flowers in my yard, but I spend most of my spare time taking care of my animals. There is always someone wanting to go for a walk if not all of them.
I have been with Dr. Jess and Tammy here at Pekin Veterinary Clinic since 1996. I have had many duties through the years: technician, inventory, ordering, scheduling and managing. From our great staff to our wonderful clients and our adorable patients I am very lucky to have a career that I can truly say I enjoy coming to work every day.
Lead Technician/ CVT
I am a certified veterinary technician. I graduated from Parkland College in May 2010 with an Associate's in Veterinary Technology. I started working at Pekin Veterinary Clinic in August 2012. I chose to become a veterinary technician because growing up I have always had a love for helping and working with animals. I love seeing how helping someone's pet can not only change the pet's life but also the owner's. My pets include two American Quarter Horses named Scotty and Cash, a pony named Dorothy, and a cat named Vinny.
In May 2014 I married my husband and we have one son. In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my family, barrel racing, canoeing, and many other outdoor activities.
I am a Certified Veterinary Technician. I graduated from Parkland College in 2007 with an Associate's degree in Veterinary Technology. Some of my veterinary interests include anesthesia, radiography and phlebotomy. I chose to become a technician because I have always had animals and felt compelled to help them.
I got married in August of 2010 to my high school sweetheart and we have a son named Brayden who keeps us on our toes. Our house is overrun by our three dogs, Rex, Rosco and Reese and our cats Dusty and Maverick. We also have our three horses, Copper, Derby and Faith as well as two goats. In my free time I am a volunteer firefighter/EMT and enjoy spending time with my family, horseback riding, and anything else outdoors.
I am a central Illinois native. Domestic animals have always been a part of my family. I grew up with a poodle mix that was more human than dog and he helped me decide that having a relationship with a pet could be a loving addition to anyone's life. Now I take pleasure in knowing that I help others keep their furry family healthy and happy.
I having been married since 2002 and a Certified Tech since 2006 (Graduated from Parkland College in Champaign).
I started at Pekin Veterinary Clinic Summer of 2008. Although, I started cleaning kennels and walking dogs when I was 16. I also worked on commission as an artist for several years. We lived for a while in the burbs of Chicago where I started as a CVT. Their dogs are mostly the same as Pekin's, but they have that thick Chicago accent!
Now we have pets and kids of our own and our daily life is a circus. I enjoy living dangerously so I occasionally cook and love shows with more than a PG rating. I love making people smile and my special skill would be venipuncture. I'm also an ace at finding snacks anywhere in the building! I try not to take life too seriously and enjoy my job and co-workers like family.
I am a Certified Veterinary Technician and a 2007 Parkland graduate. I have been working in small animal medicine since 1999. My love and compassion for animals only intensified after getting my very own dog named Lucy at the age of 13. Some of my special interests within the field are anesthesia, surgery, and imaging. I find the advancements in Veterinary Medicine truly amazing and dedicate myself to educating and implementing changes that will help aid in the aging process of your loved one.
Some things I enjoy doing with my free time include traveling, watching my nephews Jayden and Wesley and my neice Maddie grow, as well as pet sitting for loved ones.
Two causes that are very dear to my heart include Lyme Disease Awareness and Lung Cancer Research; including an annual Pool Tournament held locally in January.
My family includes a spunky couch potato named Ruby Red who is 8 years of age and an energetic diva named Olive Bean who is 2 years old.
I grew up in the small town of Carrollton, IL, and went to Parkland College to achieve my dream of becoming a certified veterinary technician. I graduated in 2015 and then started working here soon after! I absolutely love working with the staff here. Some interests in the job are radiology, dentistry, and physical therapy. The best part of the job is watching owners come in with their adopted pets (young or old) and seeing them get attached so quickly to their new family member.
My boxer Brooks keeps my life interesting. We love the outdoors, but at times we are lazy and stay on the couch and watch Netflix. When I'm not at work or with my dog, I enjoy being active in my church and spending time with friends and family. I love taking road trips, having a whole lot of creamer in my coffee, and when I'm feeling crafty I like to paint.
I am a certified veterinary technician from the small town of Eureka, IL. I grew up in the country on a hobby farm surrounded by an ever changing menagerie of pets. All through high school I worked for a groomer and loved being able to interact with animals on a daily basis. As I went through school, I developed a love for biology and that, paired with my love for animals, made the career of a CVT quite an obvious choice for me. I received my degree in Veterinary Technology from Parkland College in 2016. Since then, I have moved back to this area to work here at Pekin Veterinary Clinic. Some of my interests within the field are clinical pathology, anesthesia, and phlebotomy. Outside of work, I love to hike and camp whenever I can. I never played any sports in school, but really enjoy swing dancing! Currently, I do not have any pets of my own, so I love being able to interact with and care for so many different animals on a daily basis!
Veterinary Assistant/Exam Room Assistant
I've been in the veterinary field since 1982. I enjoy making a difference in my patients' lives, and helping an ill animal become a healthy pet again. Watching pet owners (especially their kids) take their special pet back home is all the thanks I ever need.
You name it, I have had it as a pet: horses, dogs, cats, chinchillas, guinea pigs, and fish. My favorite ‘pets’ are my two sons, Ben and Sam, and my first grandkids, Trent and Olivia. I am active in my church, Richwoods Christian Church—Parkway Campus. I'm also a brown belt in karate and trained as a Military Police Specialist. Hoo-raa! Go, Army! If you cause trouble at my clinic, you'll run into me sooner or later...
My most current hobbies are Egyptology, archeology, backyard birding, and anything on Syfy or History Channel. Yes, I am a geek and a nerd.
Veterinary Assistant/Exam Room Assistant
My name is Lorin, and I love what I do! I grew up in Bartonville and always knew I wanted to work with animals. Life has many twists and turns, and I ended up graduating from Eureka College with a degree in Psychology before making my way to Pekin Veterinary Clinic in 2014. I was even a zoo keeper at Peoria Zoo at one time! Over my lifetime, I have been chosen by small animals, birds, reptiles, dogs, and cats. I am currently the very proud owner of three dogs and two cats. I have an English Bulldog named Nevaeh, a mixed breed called Dax, and my newest girl- a pit/lab mix named Dahlia. Kylo is my awesome special needs cat who may be seen sporting his hot pink diaper, and my shy guy Tau- a beautiful, buff domestic medium hair. I am known around here for my obsession with English Bulldogs, so if you bring one in today I will make time to cuddle it!
I started work as kennel attendant in 1972 here at Pekin Veterinary Clinic. Throughout the years I have worked at different local area vet clinics and landed back at PVC to work again as veterinary assistant.
My hobbies include bicycling and walking in Pekin’s parks. I enjoy fishing and the outdoors.
My personal pets right now are a 14-year-old budgie named Pete and his younger brother, 5-year-old Jimmy. I also dogsit for my sister Candice from time to time. She owns an older, tiny pug named Juanita. I do enjoy her company. I have always enjoyed veterinary medicine and love being back to work at PVC, where it all began for me.
I’ve been with Pekin Veterinary Clinic since 2013, and still love working with all the clients and their furry kids every day. Ever since I was young, I’ve been fascinated with all types of animals. I’m so glad I can continue this passion and spend my working days doing what I love. At home, my husband and I have a Rat Terrier mix named Boyd, and an orange tabby cat named Max. With a husband and new home to care for, much of our free time is spent on home improvements and weekend trips to spend time with family, friends, and the occasional concert. I’m so glad and grateful for the opportunity that has been given to me here at Pekin Veterinary Clinic. Seeing team members and customers that love and care about their animals as much as I do is a wonderful feeling that I look forward to every day!
I grew up in Delavan, Illinois, along with my husband John, and we currently reside in Green Valley with our daughter Annabelle in our 1920s farmhouse that we are restoring in our free time. We spent the past 9 years in Lafayette, Louisiana, for my husband's work in the oilfield. Our favorite past time there was Mardi Gras and all the Cajun festivals. They threw a party for everything in Lafayette, and I'm so glad we got to experience the Cajun culture.
Our family is well-rounded. I have two grown step-sons J.D. and Jake; 5 dogs: Bandit, Mayzee, Penelope, Chloe, and Poppy; a chinchilla named Tallulah Rose; a stray kitty that adopted us named Kitty; and two guinea pigs that I am currently trying to convince my daughter to name Negan and Rick.
In my free time, I enjoy being at home with my family, watching movies, and playing video games! We will try ANY game once, especially a good zombie-based video game. I love horror movies and books. They complete me. If I'm out of the house, you can find me in the antique stores and used furniture stores finding treasures to restore. I also enjoy playing volleyball with my daughter who has inherited my insatiable love for the game as well. I am so thankful I found my way to Pekin Veterinary Clinic and look forward to growing as a receptionist and beyond for many years to come.
I started working for Pekin Veterinary Clinic in March of 2015. I have grown up in the Pekin area all my life. I graduated from Pekin High School in 2006. I now live in Manito.
In my free time, I like to play games with friends and family, go to concerts, & make people laugh. I am a very outdoorsy person. I love going on hikes, discing, or just being outside in general. I grew up playing all kinds of sports, my favorites being basketball and softball. In fact, I attended Georgetown Middle School where I was the only girl on the guy’s basketball team. I have always been a competitive person. My one true passion is shooting pool. I have been to Vegas on multiple occasions, most recently taking 3rd place. I became an Illinois State Champion in March of 2016. I became an Iowa State Champion in October of 2016. I am always looking to improve my game.
At home I have two dogs & three cats. Penny Lane is my 7 year old Pitbull. Olive is my 3 year old Greyhound mix. My cats are Jerry, 13 years old, Jack, 10 years old, and Jimmy, who is 9 years old.
I love my coworkers, our clients, and our patients. There is not a better feeling than seeing the love people have for their 4 legged furry babies.
I have been working as a receptionist at PVC for nearly two years. I am completely outnumbered by men at my house,with my husband Mason, my 8-year-old Cole, 5-year-old David, 2 Guinea Pigs Felix and Lance, and my cat Zane (who is my best friend and most spoiled cat in the world). I am currently attending the University of Illinois Springfield online to get my Bachelor's Degree in English with a concentration in Secondary Education, so in a few short years, I may have a hand at teaching some of your children. Until then, I am very grateful that I have been lucky enough to find a family here in the clients, patients, and coworkers at Pekin Veterinary Clinic.
They got my dog in right away when I called. Everyone is courteous and seem to genuinely love animals. Took good care of my dog and kept me informed.
Doctors and staff are always kind and extremely efficient. Our pet loves going there which says a lot for their care.
Very professional, wonderful treatment!! I would recommend this facility to anyone who loves their pets
Everytime I come here for any treatment they ALWAYS treat us like family. They show a deep concern for the pet and the owner. I tell everybody I know to bring their pets here!!! Thanks!!
"Best place I've ever been to! Everyone was extremely nice and helpful, I couldn't have asked for better!"
"I'm always very happy with my interactions with the staff and doctors at Pekin Veterinay Clinic. I feel as though my concerns are addressed, and that the staff really cares about me and about my furbabies."
"You can tell the Vet loves the animals. She got on the floor and played with the puppy and put her at ease. I thought that was very sweet!!"
"Great service. My dog was in need of care due to her condition and I was able to take her over right away and they worker her in. This is the kind of care and reaction I need for my dogs, and I received it."
"I have referred them to all my friends and family. They are great. There willing to work with you and are also fantastic with my dogs."
"Wonderful as always! The people are always so nice and friendly. I feel our pet gets quality health care here."
"You’re all the kind of people that make the world a better place for critters of all kinds."