UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. — Former Titans running back/landscape architect Eddie George and design expert Monica Pedersen have been tapped as judges on NBC's new one-hour reality-competition series "American Dream Builders."
The series, which premieres Sunday, March 23 at 8 p.m. ET/PT, will have Nate Berkus serve as host, judge and executive producer.
Showcasing the talents of highly accomplished designers and home builders from around the country, "American Dream Builders" will enlist 12 of the most sought-after designers and builders for a high-pressure competition designed to push everyone's creative reach. Each week the contestants will tackle two massive home-renovation projects, each featuring unique architectural styles that result in jaw-dropping transformations. They will rethink the way we live and create new design that is sure to inspire.
"My goal is for this show to stand for magazine-worthy designs," said Berkus. "For that to happen, we had to start with a great cast capable of reaching that level of design. They had to be established — a group focused on maintaining their hard-earned reputations. I knew I had to have judges join me that would not only push our talented designers, but push me as well. Eddie and Monica are those judges. They have an opinion and aren't afraid to share it."
Well-known for his brilliant football career, George is a Heisman Trophy winner who spent most of his career with the Tennessee Titans. After his playing days, George was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame (Ohio State), and pursued his passion as a landscape architect. He is co-founder of EDGE, a leading landscape architecture firm based in Tennessee and Ohio. With projects ranging from retail and office spaces to college campuses and entire communities, the company currently enjoys regional market expertise across the Midwest and South.
As a designer on more than 90 episodes of HGTV's hit series "Designed to Sell" and 50 episodes of "Bang for Your Buck," Pedersen has quickly become a trusted name in design and renovation. The Chicago-based Pedersen, who preaches beauty and function, is also well known for her appearances as an expert on NBC's "Today" show as well as "HGTV Dream Home," "House Hunter's Great Escapes," the "Steve Harvey Show" and many others. She released her first design book, "Make It Beautiful," in 2012.
The highly successful and established contestants on "American Dream Builders" will showcase their talents and inspire America to create their own dream home. The winner will receive a grand prize of $250,000.
The competitors include:
Vanessa Deleon — Edgewater, N.J.
From humble beginnings in her family's furniture business in New Jersey, Vanessa Deleon has gone on to build a successful career running her own design firm, Vanessa Deleon Associates. Deleon draws inspiration from her Cuban roots and the art-deco styling that strongly influences her culture. The young designer has been featured in several publications including New York Spaces, Interior Design, Home, Latina, Time and Entertainment Weekly. She has also appeared in "Generation Renovation," "Designer's Challenge," "Design Star" and the Food Network's "Restaurant Impossible."
Andrew Flesher — New York, N.Y.
Andrew Flesher is a successful interior designer based in New York and Minneapolis. With a strong background in architecture, Flesher's design style centers on his ability to mix modern and classic elements, blending new pieces with vintage finds. His projects range from single rooms to entire homes. House Beautiful ranked him as one of their top 25 young designers and House & Garden magazine ranked him one of their top 50 tastemakers. His work has been featured in several publications, including Metropolitan Home, as well as House Beautiful and House & Garden.
Dann Foley — Palm Springs, Calif.
Dann Foley is a renowned residential and commercial/hospitality designer. For more than two decades, Foley has run his own successful design firm, DANNinc. Foley's aesthetic is classic, yet modern, rich and comfortable. An award-winning member of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) and Accessories Resource Team (ART), Foley works on a variety of high-end projects across the U.S. and North America, as well as Europe, Asia and the Middle East. He has also expanded his expertise to product licensing, with partnerships that include Skyline Designs, Loloi Rugs, the Phillips Collection, Wildcat Territory and Zodax, among others.
Elaine Griffin — New York, N.Y.
A graduate of Yale University and the New York School of Interior Design, Elaine Griffin began her career in The Office of architect Peter Marino, following a career as a publicist in New York and Paris. Griffin opened her own design firm in 1999 and has built a successful career as a New York-based interior designer. Ranked one of House Beautiful's top 100 American designers, Griffin is a regular contributor to Elle Décor and Better Homes & Gardens and has appeared as a design expert on "Oprah" and "Today," among other outlets.
Nancy Hadley — Huntington Beach, Calif.
Armed with a studio art degree from the University of California, Santa Barbara, Nancy Hadley began her career designing and building large-scale interactive exhibits around the world while also working as a specialty toy sculptor for Mattel. Hadley served as furniture designer, sculptor, and muralist on more than 80 homes in seasons one through five of "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" and won an Emmy Award for her behind-the-scenes work on the show. Hadley, a busy mother of two, currently handles projects that range from commercial spaces to residential.
Tarrick Love — Nashville, Tenn.
Tarrick Love is a licensed general contractor and owner of two residential development companies based in Nashville: Hart-Love Enterprises and Dream Build Nashville. Love began his career as a mechanical engineer and, after being introduced to home building, found his new passion. Since forming his own companies in 2006, Love has served as a licensed general contractor and developer for more than 100 new builds, renovations and additions. His focus is building beautiful, custom, single and multi-family homes and is proud to be a certified LEED builder (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). Love has been recognized twice by the Historic Homes Commission of Middle Tennessee as winner of the Historic Preservation Award.
Lukas Machnik — Chicago, Ill.
Born in Krakow, Poland to accomplished artist and designer parents, Lukas Machnik is a rising design star based in Chicago. His high-end projects include homes throughout Europe and the U.S. In addition to interior design he is an artist, furniture and object designer. His work has been featured in publications including Elle Décor, AD France, Chicago Home & Garden and the Chicago Tribune among others. His signature minimalist style has earned him the nickname "Bad Boy of Design."
Nina Magon — Houston, Texas
After earning her bachelor of science degree in economics and finance from Southern Methodist University, Nina Magon moved into a career in design and construction and is currently the president and creative director of Contour Interior Design. Magon, a working mom, has been recognized for her work with several design awards, including her most recent Houzz 2013 Design Award for Best Interior Space and ASID 2013 Design Award for Best Commercial Space. Her work has been featured in Bloomberg Business Week, Modern Luxury, Prime Texas Living and Paper City.
Darren Moore — Los Angeles, Calif.
Darren Moore is the creator and CEO of Ecovations, which provides design, consulting and building services with the goal of solving ecological problems within the world of design. He has worked on various "green" projects with numerous celebrities, including Ed Begley, Jr., and James Cameron. Moore's projects include both residential design and building. The designer, who is a single dad, has also hosted "Alter Eco" on Planet Green and has been a featured speaker at a variety of eco-events, including Eco Chic New York Fashion Week and Go Green Expo. His eco-friendly work has earned him the nickname "Eco-MacGyver."
Jay Riordan — Chicago, Ill.
Jay Riordan is currently the owner and president of Riordan Signature Homes, a leading company in Chicago and a family business that his father originally founded. The company specializes in old-world craftsmanship, coupled with new-world innovation. Riordan has completed more than 100 high-end custom homes in his career and was named the Crystal Key Award winner from the Home Builders Assn. of Greater Chicagoland in 2009-12. The proud Chicago native comes from a large Irish family and is the father of five boys (triplets and twins).
Christina Salway — Brooklyn, N.Y.
After graduating with a bachelor's degree from Hampshire College in Amherst, Mass., Christina Salway began a career that focused on architecture. She quickly realized, however, that she had a passion and a flair for interior design and eventually started her own design firm, ElevenTwoEleven Design. The Williamsburg, Brooklyn-based designer (and new mom) currently handles projects of all sizes throughout New York City and the surrounding suburbs, including recent projects in the Hudson Valley and Catskills. Salway's work has been featured in the New York Times, Better Homes & Gardens, Apartment Therapy and on "The Nate Berkus Show."
Erinn Valencich — Los Angeles, Calif.
Erinn Valencich is a versatile designer working on a wide range of projects through her firm, Erinn V Design Group. In addition to designing residences for many celebrity clients, she recently completed work a 650-room hotel and casino in Las Vegas, the Downtown Grand. She has appeared on "The View," "Extra" and "Entertainment Tonight" and hosted several specials for HGTV. Her work has been featured in Town & Country, Architectural Digest and Elle Décor. She recently partnered with Quick-Step to launch a new line of flooring and has her own store in Los Angeles carrying her eponymous branded furniture line, Erinn V.
"American Dream Builders" is produced by Universal Television in association with Steele Mill Productions, Inc. Berkus serves as executive producer along with Tom Shelly ("Love in the Wild," "Survivor") and Jason Ehrlich ("The Bachelor").
American Dream Builders
Please visit the official show site at http://www.nbc.com/american-dream-builders/
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