David Michelson, President
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Boston native David Michelson joined the Renewal team as partner and operations director. Like his brother Peter, he grew up working in the family construction business established by their great grandfather in 1896.
A graduate of Syracuse University, he has managed construction projects from coast to coast: Baltimore, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, Palm Springs, Boston, Bar Harbor, and Ft. Lauderdale. His experience includes restoring original millwork, stone exteriors and roof slates on historic buildings, and updating interiors for 21st century uses.
Now settled in the Atlanta area with his family, David is pleased to put his 20 years of project management and executive-level experience to work for Renewal’s clients.
Peter Michelson, CEO
Peter Michelson is a fourth generation construction professional who grew up helping out with the family business in the Boston area.
After graduating from the University of Michigan with a BA in History, Peter spent time working in San Francisco for several firms on a variety of construction projects, ranging from high rises to historic restorations to remodeling projects. Next came extensive travel in Asia and teaching English in Taiwan. Peter returned to the U.S. to earn a Masters degree in education and became a teacher at the Waldorf School of Atlanta.
In 2001, Peter “retired” from teaching and rolled his family background, education, and work experience into a new endeavor, Renewal Design-Build.
Listen to Peter talk to Newstalk 1160′s Jeff Davis about design-build, aging-in-place, hiring a remodeler, and more.
Project Development Team
Heather Shuster, Project Development Director
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Over the last 10 years, Heather has owned and renovated five homes, circa 1905 to 1962, ranging in style from Queen Anne to Craftsman bungalow to postwar cottage to long-and-low ranch. Her love and knowledge of homes is obvious -– she enjoys visiting the homes of Renewal clients to discover hidden charms and opportunities for improvement.
Heather also enjoys working with homeowners throughout the consulting and design process. She has a design and management background and specializes in spatial planning, layouts and project development. Heather says, “It’s a real treat working with the Renewal team. The talent of our designers and project managers is so evident on every job. It’s a privilege to be surrounded by such a creative group.”
Before joining Renewal in 2008, Heather’s career included managing a custom workroom, merchandising and store planning, and interior design for residential and commercial clients. She earned a MA in art history and a BA in art history and English literature from the University of Georgia. Her current project is a pristine ranch that she shares with her husband, daughter and many pets.
Heather has been featured on TBS’s Movie and a Makeover. She is especially proud of her design work on this kosher kitchen.
Listen to Heather on Newstalk 1160′s Women on the Move! Heather talks to host Jennifer Green about consulting homeowners and provides listeners with important remodeling tips.
Click to listen to Part 1 of the Women on the Move interview.
Kirk Benson, Renovation Consultant
Having grown up in Alpharetta and attending high school in Atlanta, Kirk has an extensive knowledge of the metro Atlanta area. Fortunate enough to discover at a young age that he wanted to pursue a career in design, Kirk earned his degree in landscape architecture from the University of Georgia. While working on both commercial and residential projects, Kirk received his LEED Accredited Professional designation in 2009. He then settled in Decatur with his family and started his own landscape design-build firm. Kirk developed a strong appreciation for discovering clients’ needs and helping them find solutions. He is passionate about solving problems with a sense for the aesthetics and a keen eye for detail.
In addition to enjoying the outdoors with his wife, Kirk likes to take his young boys on hiking and camping trips. Kirk is excited about being a member of the Renewal Design Build team. “I look forward to working with a talented team that takes pride in the quality of their work.”
Ken Carter, Estimator
A true Georgia native, Ken was born in Augusta and raised in the Atlanta area. After attending high school in DeKalb County, he studied mechanical engineering technology at Southern Polytechnic State University.
Before joining Renewal, Ken spent 12 years in commercial construction, estimating and managing renovation and new construction projects. He also managed building and landscaping programs for a full-service commercial real estate company for 10 years.
Ken holds an unrestricted mechanical contractors license with the State of Georgia. A proponent of environmentally-sound practices in construction and design, he has been active in following the LEED program (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) and the developments of the U.S. Green Building Council.
Ken and his wife of 24 years, Michelle, have three daughters. When he’s not on the sidelines of a soccer field cheering on his daughters, he enjoys mountain biking, hiking, camping, and fishing.
Jon Cauthen, Renovation Consultant
Born in Baltimore, Jon grew up in Duluth, Georgia. After graduating from the University of Georgia with a degree in landscape architecture, Jon worked in various architecture and landscape design offices here in Atlanta. After remodeling his own 1950s ranch, he discovered a passion for residential design and started his own company in 2009. Jon’s experience includes all things remodeling, from exterior living spaces and interior design to custom woodwork and rainwater irrigation systems. His love for home renovation can be found in details, like: integrated storage, display furniture, trim profiles, cabinetry, and creative lighting.
Among his many hobbies, Jon enjoys playing soccer in an amateur league, skateboarding, cooking, and spending time with his family in Atlanta’s public parks. Jon and his wife live in Atlanta’s Briarlake neighborhood with their three small children.
Elaine Drayton, Project Designer
Elaine fell in love with architecture at the age of 10 when she saw the drawings of a floor plan and elevation for the “house of the week” in the local Savannah newspaper.
She has more than 20 years of experience in the residential architecture industry designing new homes and renovations in the Atlanta, Charlotte, Nashville, Hilton Head and Washington DC metro area. Elaine received her degree in architecture from Georgia Institute of Technology and studied interior design at the University of Tennessee.
In her free time Elaine volunteers for the Child Abuse Helpline for Georgia and serves as a wedding consultant/director at her church.
Kathryn Duckworth, Project Designer
[bio available soon]
Michael Nualla, Project Designer
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Michael Nualla brings more than 15 years of residential design experience to Renewal. After moving to Atlanta 20 years ago and graduating from Georgia Tech’s College of Architecture, Michael began his career as a carpenter, working on custom homes and even studying the art of Japanese carpentry.
Since then, he has worked for several firms in the Atlanta area, designing historic renovations, new construction, and energy-efficient homes in neighborhoods like Decatur, Morningside, Candler Park, Druid Hills, and Ansley Park.
Michael has renovated and lived in his own 1927 Kirkwood bungalow for the last nine years. In his free time, he enjoys urban farming – digging up his yard and planting vegetables and herbs.
Brent Potter, Project Designer
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Born and raised in Lansing, Michigan, Brent moved to Atlanta in 2000 to work as a draftsperson at an architecture firm in Marietta. He married Michelle, a Decatur resident, and they decided to stay here “for the great sense of community – and where else could we find so many bike trails and parks for our dog?”
Brent has an associates degree in Architecture from Lansing Community College and a BS in Social Work with a minor in Gerontology Studies from Georgia State University. While in college, he worked as an apprentice for a kitchen and furniture designer and custom home builder.
Before joining Renewal 5 years ago, Brent owned a design-build business in Decatur, specializing in carpentry work and small remodeling projects. Making the transition to Renewal was easy. “I enjoy belonging to a team who works together to make the environment better for others,” he says. “I feel like I’m part of an extended family that does things well and takes pride in their work.”
Brent designed this kitchen that won a Professional Remodeler Magazine Best of the Best Design Award.
John Carpentier, Project Manager
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John has worked full time in the residential construction business since 1986. Before joining Renewal, he managed construction projects in the Buckhead area for 12 years.
An artist with a BFA from the University of New Mexico and an MFA from the University of California, John moved from Los Angeles to Atlanta in 1990 and has lived in Decatur since 1993.
Construction and carpentry run in John’s family. His brother is a carpenter in St. Louis, his father was a contractor, and his great-grandfather was a master carpenter from Switzerland. As for John, “I’ve worked hands-on in all phases of home building and renovating, from the foundation to the final finishes.”
See what a satisfied client has to say about working with John.
Mark Franco, Project Manager
Born in south Georgia and raised in Atlanta, Mark’s professional background includes 10 years as a safety consultant to national real estate clients, and more recently, six years as a home renovator. His personal experience in designing and renovating three of his own properties over the last 16 years sparked his interest in moving from the corporate environment to starting up his own remodeling company in Decatur.
After a two-year sabbatical on the small Caribbean island of Vieques, Mark is very excited to join the Renewal team. “Being part of a well-established and professionally proven organization doing what I love is very exciting. There’s nothing more rewarding than seeing a home renovation through from start to finish, and seeing the homeowners’ joy as their projects becomes reality.” Mark enjoys the outdoors and all adventure sports. He is also an amateur photographer and avid scuba diver holding designations as a rescue diver and divemaster.
Anthony Hamilton, Jobsite Ambassador
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Anthony is part of a large extended family with deep roots in the Decatur/DeKalb community. His grandmother moved from rural Georgia to Decatur in the 1970s, and Anthony spent his early years at her home on E. Benson Street.
While attending Avondale High School, Anthony began to work with family and friends in the construction industry. He has worked in various areas of the construction field for more than 10 years and is happy to have found a niche at Renewal. He lives with his wife and two young sons and enjoys coaching football and soccer for the local recreation center.
Timothy Heaney, Project Manager
Tim Heaney brings more than 25 years of experience in the home construction and residential remodeling industry to Renewal. He has an extremely well-rounded background in project management, design, development, and hands-on carpentry experience. Prior to joining Renewal, Tim worked for several remodeling firms and home builders in the Atlanta area. In addition, he owned a remodeling and new home construction business in Atlanta, managing all phases of remodeling and construction.
A N.A.R.I. certified remodeler, Tim served as project manager on two N.A.R.I. Regional award winning renovation projects for additions and kitchens. He is OSHA Construction Safety and OSHA Scaffolding Safety qualified, and also has a Georgia NPDES Qualified Personnel status.
Before entering the home construction industry, Tim, a Chicago native, spent 12 years in the Ft. Lauderdale and St. Petersburg areas performing yacht repairs and fabricating custom cabinetry for high-end yachts.
Tim joined Renewal because, “I enjoy the challenge of remodeling all homes – but have a special affinity for the character of older homes. I also enjoy working with clients to help them see their dream projects through to a happy conclusion.” He and his wife of 30 years, Debbie, live in Johns Creek and have two grown children. An avid surfer, Tim is proud to watch his son (whom he taught to surf) teach his own son the sport. In his free time Tim enjoys spending time with his family, kayaking, gardening and woodworking, and is amateur luthier (maker of ukuleles).
Shereen Shaw, Accounts Manager
While attending Columbus State University in Columbus, Georgia, Shereen came to appreciate the people and the climate of the South. She ultimately decided to leave her native Manchester, New Hampshire and relocate to Atlanta for a change of pace.
Shereen holds a BS in Business Finance and an MBA with a certificate in Financial Analysis.
Her background in banking, bookkeeping, law and property management provides valuable insights into the best way to manage accounts for a growing design-build company. The New England connection is a happy coincidence.
Our work crews include full-time project managers, carpenters and carpenters’ helpers. We carefully screen the trusted, proven subcontracting resources that are an important part of our team.