LEON A. FRECHETTE

AUTHOR/COLUMNIST
HOME REMODELING EXPERT
PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT
TOOL DESIGNER & TECHNICAL CONSULTANT
FORMER CONTRACTOR

With over 36 years' hands-on experience, Leon A. Frechette is recognized as an industry authority. His background includes construction and a home remodeling consulting firm; but his broad range of expertise also includes tool development and testing, training, and product evaluation.

Frechette provides practical know-how to both DIYers and professionals. He has authored feature articles in numerous trade magazines on a variety of home repair/remodeling topics—focusing on current trends and reviewing new building products. In 1995 he received Stanley's Golden Hammer Award for "How to Install a Garage Door Opener," a short-subject article published in the January/February 1995 issue of HomeImage Magazine. In 2003 he received the Vaughan/National Association of Home and Workshop Writers (NAHWW) Golden Hammer Writing Award for Best How-To Electronic Media for "Dress Up Your Chandelier With A Ceiling Medallion"; in 2007 he received the Vaughan/NAHWW Golden Hammer Writing Award in the Internet Category for "Bricky - The professional wall-building tool"; and in 2008 he received the Vaughan/NAHWW Golden Hammer Writing Award in the Internet Category for "Learn How to Read and Choose a Tape Measure."

He has written seven books, and his latest, published by The Taunton Press (2004), Remodeling A Bathroom, is his first full-length book in color. The featured bathroom is his own, remodeled especially to give readers a fuller understanding of what it takes to remodel a bathroom from start to finish. Build Smarter with Alternative Materials, published by Craftsman Book company (1999), deals with all the alternative materials that can be used to build a home from the ground up. In 2000 this book won the prestigious Vaughan's Golden Hammer Writing Award. Published by McGraw-Hill, Accessible Housing (1996) addresses the barrier-free market, Builder's Guide to Decks (1995) offers straight talk for contractors concentrating on the deck market, and Bathroom Remodeling (1994 out-of-print) is a no-nonsense, illustrative, how-to book for novice contractors and DIYers. Frechette also authored The Helping Hands™ Guide to Hiring a Remodeling Contractor, the first publication ever to address consumer concerns in hiring and working with remodeling contractors. An ongoing project is his web site, www.asktooltalk.com, where individuals can find articles on home improvement, products, tools, reviews, and locate manufacturers.

As a tool consultant, Frechette has worked behind the scenes for national tool manufacturers in the development of new products. He toured from 1997 to 2005 with "ToolTALK" and "ToolTIPS for Women," live shows featured on the Home & Garden circuit throughout the United States and Canada. His ability to simplify home repair and remodeling techniques in a careful, systematized fashion for DIYers and professionals is unequaled.

ACCOMPLISHMENTS

Weekly Newspaper Column

The Tool Guy (The Spokesman Review "Home" 2003-2006)

Books and Forms

Remodeling A Bathroom (The Taunton Press, 2004)
Build Smarter with Alternative Materials (Craftsman Book Company, 1999)
Accessible Housing (McGraw-Hill, Inc., 1996)
The Builder's Guide To Decks (McGraw-Hill, Inc., 1995)
Bathroom Remodeling (TAB Books/McGraw-Hill, Inc., 1994 out-of-print)
THE PRE-DEVELOPMENT HANDBOOK The Permit Process For Multi-Family Housing: New Construction and Rehabilitation (C.R.S., Inc., 1991)
The Helping Hands Guide to Hiring A Remodeling Contractor (C.R.S., Inc., 1988)
The Contractor's Helping Hands Packet (C.R.S., Inc., 1986)

Magazine Articles

Building & Remodeling News
Craftsman at Home (Aqua-Field)
Extreme How-To (LATITUDE3 Media Group, LLC)
HomeImage (Builders Square)
HomePlans for Today (Pollard Publishing Group)
Popular Woodworking (EGW Publishing Co.)
Remodeler's Edge (newsletter, USG Corporation)
S.K.U. Magazine (Handy Hardware)
Successful Contractor (Servistar)
Tech Directions (Prakken Publications)
The Free Press (alternative newspaper)
Tools of the Trade (JLC)
Woodworker (F&W Publications, Inc.)
Woodworker's Journal (PJS Pub., Inc.)
Workbench (KC Publishing, Inc.)

News Wire

In 2009 I wrote a feature release titled "Do-It-Yourself Tips On Silencing Squeaky Floors" for North American Precis Syndicate, Inc. (NAPS). This piece ran from January 2010 until August 2011. NAPS honored me with a Golden Thinker Award and a Certificate of Excellence for Superior Achievement in the Media Relations. These awards are given each year to individuals who create feature releases that are picked up the most by America's newspaper editors. The number of placements a release achieves is a great measure of its success. The results of my release, 1,396 placements, have been absolutely extraordinary.

Photography

Building & Remodeling News
Shark Corporation
TAB Books/McGraw-Hill, Inc.
Tech Directions (Prakken Publications)
Tools of the Trade (JLC)
Workbench (KC Publications, Inc.)
Woodworker (F&W Publications, Inc.)
Woodworker's Journal (PJS Pub., Inc.)

Tool Testing and Design

Deck One
Shark Corporation
Skil Corporation

Toys—Products, Plans, and Designs

Frechette's Heirloom Toys (1979 to date)
Spud Spikes Potato Nails and Gourment Rubs/Seasonings(2003 to date)

Video Production

Mobil Chemical Company (how-to on decks for professionals)
Shark Corporation infomercial (point of purchase, commercial, and how-to)
Reid/Land Productions-HGTV (13 episodes, "Today at Home"—Tools 1996)
Little Giant infomercial #1 (Wing Enterprises 2004-2006)
Little Giant infomercial #2 (Wing Enterprises 2006)
Bricky wall-building tool infomercial (Marshall Tools Ltd. 2006)
JawSaw infomercial (WORX Tools 2011)

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