The Avalon Custom Builders team is comprised of highly talented individuals with years of experience within the residential construction industry. Our team’s diverse specialties allow us to provide our customers with a comprehensive range of services and expertise. Learn more about the team below, and be sure to contact us to discuss your next custom home project or renovation.
JR Leonard - Owner and Project Manager
JR grew up in southern Maryland while working for the family mechanical contracting company based in Washington, D.C. After earning his degree in Business Administration from Towson University, JR entered the residential market with Ryan Homes. During his 12 years there, JR gained valuable experience in production, purchasing, sales, and marketing.
Looking for more challenges, JR joined the team at D.R. Horton as a Delaware area manager. He eventually moved on to become Vice President of Homebuilding at Carl M. Freeman Companies in Bethany Beach, DE.
After 20 years in the business, JR decided to focus his experience and talents on establishing Avalon Custom Builders, Inc. Created in 2007, JR is now able to focus on his passion for building custom homes. His free time is spent with family and friends, coaching high school and youth lacrosse, youth soccer, and mountain biking.
Andrew Haldeman - Project Manager
Andrew grew up in Landenberg, PA, and moved to Delaware in 2001. Growing up, he worked with his father and learned the basics of the industry. From framing and electrical to plumbing, he became knowledgeable in all phases of residential construction.
His professional career started as a self-employed contractor who worked with a national builder for nine years doing finish work and then warranty maintenance. In addition to this work, Andrew spent a period using his skills and talent to flip houses.
In 2011, Andrew came aboard at Avalon Custom Builders as a Supervisor. His hard work and dedication earned him the position of Project Manager. Andrew has over 17 years of experience in his professional career and loves what he is doing.
Andrew is an active leader of the Boy Scouts of America, where he and his son attend many events. He enjoys spending his time off with his wife and two children.
Michelle MacEachern - Interior Designer and Project Manager
Michelle is originally from Connecticut and graduated from the Chamberlayne School of Design in Boston. She holds a B.S. in Interior Design.
In 2006, she moved to Maryland with her husband and two daughters and started her design business, Inspiration Through Design. In her ten years of business, she has done a vast array of projects, primarily in residential design.
She loves working with clients and providing design advice to guide them through what can be an overwhelming process at times. She is happy to be a positive part of their journey.
When she’s not working, Michelle enjoys running, cycling, boating, and traveling. She is active in her church and values time with her family.
Tony DeRose - Lead Carpenter
Tony is a Delaware native and grew up in the Wilmington area. In high school, he excelled in the drafting and design program. He continued pursuing training in carpentry. After spending several years in the Navy, Tony began working for a contractor specializing in residential renovations. He gained experience in framing, demolition, drywall, flooring, electrical, plumbing, trim work, cabinetry, and painting.
In 2013 Tony began working for Avalon Custom Builders as a carpenter. He stood out as a hard worker who took great care in listening to customers’ needs and exceeding their expectations. In 2015, Tony received a promotion to Lead Carpenter. He continues to excel in this position today.
Tony keeps busy in his spare time with his family. He enjoys coaching baseball, fishing, hunting, camping, and attending sporting events with his wife and two boys.
Zoe August - Project Coordinator
Joining the industry in 2017, Zoe is in a supportive role at Avalon as an assistant project manager. She helps facilitate the permits and contracts and is also a great liaison. She enjoys helping others in any way she can.
Zoe August is a native of Cecil County, Maryland. Her family owned a General Contracting firm, so construction has always been in her blood. Zoe went on to earn a B.F.A. from Virginia Commonwealth University before returning to the area to start a family. She and her husband, Dan, have 3 school aged children who keep them on their toes. The family enjoys camping on the weekends, exploring the outdoors, gardening, and art.