Meet Our Team
With well over a century of combined experience, the Sterling Custom Homes team provides clients
with a level of expertise that inspires confidence and trust.
Duke McDowell, GMB, CGB, CGP – President
A graduate of Texas Tech University with a degree in Engineering with a Construction Option, Duke McDowell has devoted his entire career to building homes. Duke is a past Chairman and a past member of the Industrial Engineering Advisory Board for Texas Tech and has been recognized for his contributions and service to the home construction industry as an inductee into the Engineering Technology Academy at Texas Tech University.
Prior to establishing Sterling Custom Homes, Inc., Duke worked for two large homebuilding companies in Texas, serving as the Vice President of Construction & Operations. He also served as a consultant for 14 of the top 200 builders in the nation. These experiences have provided Duke with valuable insight concerning the issues facing homebuilders today.
“At Sterling Custom Homes, we are committed to turning our customers’ dreams into realities. What this means to you is the highest quality home at the most competitive price. Through architectural efficiency, volume purchasing and long-term subcontractor relationships, we are striving to build the finest quality homes and service department that can be found anywhere in the industry.” — Duke McDowell
Angie McDowell – Business Development Manager
As Business Development Manager, Angie makes things happen for Sterling. She guides families through the challenging process of designing and building a custom home and come out with a lasting relationship with our homeowners. She uses her experience and knowledge to introduce Sterling to new home buyers and partners to help continue to grow and develop Sterling as a premier builder in Lakeway and surrounding areas.
Angie has worked in various capacities at Sterling Custom Homes over the years, beginning in 1991 when she first moved to Austin. Angie adapted quickly and successfully to each role and she is more than qualified to do the job. Although her passion for new homes and making customers happy is a big part in her life, she was also involved elsewhere before coming back to Sterling in 2018. She has been married since 1992, with two, now, adult “children”, Will and Lindsey. While her kids were in school, she volunteered at their school in many capacities while concurrently serving her church, friends and family. She also earned her license as a Texas Realtor after the Will & Lindsey got out of high school. While she finds all these opportunities fulfilling, she felt it very natural and exciting to be back to Sterling to serve you in your custom home journey and bringing fresh new ideas to Sterling!
Born in Lubbock, TX and raised in a small town just outside of Lubbock, Angie graduated from Texas Tech University in 1989. She has called the Hill Country home since 1991 and is currently residing in Dripping Springs. Angie has a heart of gold and cares first about the customer, which is a rare and important priority that most people these days don’t put first. But with Angie, you will feel like you have been best friends for years with her welcoming, cheerful and friendly spirit. You never have to worry about reliability issues with her; Angie will always put YOU first! Angie is here to partner with you until your goal of a dream home is accomplished!
Christine Mann – Production Coordinator
As Production Coordinator and Customer Selection Manager, Christine assists homeowners with their selections. She is a liaison between our customers and trade partners; she schedules appointments, reviews proposals and gets selections ordered. She prepares customers’ CookBooks and updates their online Homeowner private login section of their website. Christine attends the weekly construction meetings to stay abreast of the daily activities, and provides support to the Construction Estimator and Construction Managers on customer selections.
Christine is also Executive Assistant to Duke. She provides administrative support, which includes scheduling his appointments, preparing/processing reports and special projects. Being a team member is important to Christine and she is always ready to assist homeowners and team members with a friendly and positive attitude.
Christine has been with Sterling since May 2002. She graduated from Southwest Texas State University with a Bachelors of Business Administration. Before joining Sterling, Christine was an executive assistant for the president of a telecommunications company and an office manager for an environmental law firm in Austin.
Bruce Herve, CGB – Builder / Construction Manager
Bruce has been with Sterling since early 2016 and is responsible for every aspect of the construction process, from scheduling and directing trades to facilitating homeowner walkthroughs. Bruce makes things happen, in the field, as Sterling’s Construction Manager.
Bruce graduated from New Hampshire College, with a bachelor’s degree in business administration, with a focus in organizational leadership. Bruce started his career in finance and later made the career change to home building. Having owned his own home building company, before joining the team at Sterling, as well as doing architectural remodels, Bruce brings a valuable set of experiences. This value adds to Sterling’s long history of building high quality homes.
When Bruce isn’t in the field, enhancing our Homeowners’ lives, he can be found spending time outdoors with his wife and son. Bruce is an avid outdoors-man and spends much of his free time hunting and fishing
Jeff Miranda – Accounting Manager
Jeff has been a member of the Sterling team since 2013. As Accounting Manager, Jeff ensures that we account for every dollar. He scrutinizes each bill and looks to save money whenever possible – for Sterling, and for our customers. This means that when you trust us to pay bills on your behalf for allowance items, Jeff ensures that we steward your money as if it were our own.
Jeff has over 30 years of combined cost accounting and project management experience. While finishing his accounting degree at Lamar University, Jeff began his career as an intern at a large commercial and industrial contractor in Texas. Afterwards, Jeff spent the next 8 years as this company’s Assistant Controller, and Controller of their steel fabrication division, before transitioning to government project management in Washington DC. While in DC for more than a decade, Jeff worked with multiple government agencies, managing Y2K transitions and other security installations at many DoD facilities and airports. Jeff also served as Sr. Financial Analyst for a government-appointed airport security taskforce in the wake of 9/11. Jeff moved back to Texas, about 10 years ago, so that he could spend more time visiting and assisting his parents.
When Jeff isn’t here at Sterling, he can be found enjoying time with his family. Whether it’s activities with his two sons, or visiting his dad, Jeff loves his family; and, he considers it a privilege to be a small part in helping provide “dream homes” to our Sterling family.
Jeff Neidel – Builder
Jeff has been with Sterling since August 2019. He spends his time at each job site overseeing the construction process, including supervising subcontractors, managing the scheduling and logistical systems, and ensuring the smooth implementation of our quality control processes. Jeff meets with homeowners to answer questions and discuss any changes. His ability to listen to the homeowner, drive the construction schedule, and ensure Sterling quality in each home is an equation that equals successful project completion and satisfied homeowners.
Prior to joining the Sterling team, Jeff spent ten years in the outside sales world, working on large scale professional communication systems in commercial venues. In 2013, Jeff followed a personal passion for residential construction and left the sales world for custom home building. With a sharp focus on the client experience, schedule and quality control, Jeff engages and partners with our suppliers and subcontractors to execute highly complex custom home projects.
Jeff has lived in the Austin area since 1988 and been witness to the amazing growth and development of this beautiful region of Texas. He graduated from Southwest Texas State University in San Marcos with a bachelor’s degree in Exercise and Sports Science. Jeff was blessed to marry his college sweetheart and they have two children and a dog. Jeff’s family enjoys church, movie nights, hanging out with family and lifelong friends, and cooking.
Rick Kowalski – Warranty Manager
Claire has been with Sterling since October 2019. Her main focus as the purchaser and estimator is to make sure all the parts and pieces of the home are correctly accounted for so our builder get started and stay on schedule. She also works closely with our suppliers to maintain the relationships needed to keep those awesome products coming.
Claire has worked in the building industry since graduating college in 2011 with a bachelor’s in interior design with a focus on building and mechanical systems. She started with the city codes and inspections department as an intern and entered into the production home building scene shortly after. Claire joined the team at Sterling because custom homes are her passion. Her attention to detail and experience with construction documents and the estimating process make it possible to build a great home.
She was born in Snyder, a small town in west Texas, and moved to Austin area in 2001. In her spare time, Claire enjoys spending time with her husband and family, traveling, and enjoying live music. She has 2 little boys that keep her very busy with school, sports and activities.