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The Payne Family Homes’ Team

THE Executive TEAM

Our Payne Family Homes Executive Team has a vast and varied background. Each member of our leadership team loves what they do and looks forward to welcoming you as part of the family.



Ken Kruse

Kruse has 24 years of experience in the homebuilding industry. He is a skilled communicator, financially astute, and analytically creative. He balances a forward-thinking and broadminded approach with problem-solving and decision-making skills. Kruse blends a collaborative and people-oriented style into practical, efficient, and energizing solutions. Kruse graduated with a BSBA with an emphasis in Accounting from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and was an Audit Manager at Ernst & Young before beginning his homebuilding career. Having served as President of the St. Louis Division of Centex Homes, which at it’s peak, closed 1,000 homes annually, and as a finance executive with Centex and The Jones Company, Kruse came to Payne Family Homes with strong leadership skills, business and financial acumen.

Since arriving at Payne Family Homes in 2009, Ken Kruse has grown the company from 9 employees to 80 and 27 closings annually to more than 300. His philosophy is to make sure everyone he hires is the best possible match for not only the company but for the job as well.

Kruse is a member of and has served as the President of the Homebuilder’s Association of St. Louis. He has also sat on or chaired numerous committees with the HBA. He has also served the community as Officer/Treasurer of St. Martha’s Hall, a shelter for abused women and their children. Kruse also was a member of the Better Business Bureau’s Public Information Trade Practice Committee.


VP Construction Operations

Eva Fryar

A proud Purdue Boilermaker and graduate, Eva Fryar earned her degree in Construction Management. She served as an estimator for the Jones Company and Centex Homes in multiple divisions. Now Eva provides Payne Family Homes strategic leadership and direction for the homebuilder’s growing portfolio of residential homes in the St. Louis, Missouri metropolitan region.

Fryar oversees 26 people including field superintendents, a team of estimators, purchasing, in-house architecture and the company’s customer care team. All this as well as coordinating the efforts of around 100 suppliers.

Eva has been a member of the St. Louis Home Builders Association for more than 10 years. She currently serves on their board of directors and is heading up their student education chapter. She is the chair of the Professional Women in Building Council committee and the past four years, been a judge for the National Home Builders Association Residential Construction Management Competition (RCMC). RCMC provides college students the opportunity to apply skills learned in the classroom to a real construction environment by completing a management project/proposal. Investing in the next generation of Home Building Professionals is a passion for Eva.

Also for Payne Family Homes, Eva leads the campaign and building efforts for the St. Louis St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway and has helped raise over $6 million to benefit St. Jude Children’s’ Research Hospital since 2014. She has lead the charge organizing the materials and labor to construct the home with zero cost to St. Jude, an effort that has never been duplicated by a single builder in the 28 years of the St. Jude Dream Home program. Eva also volunteers with Habitat for Humanity and helps build a house every year for a low-income family.


VP Land Acquisition & Development

William R. Allen, P.E.

Proud Kirkwood, MO native and Professional Engineer, Bill Allen is Payne Family Homes’ land scout. He’s responsible for identifying and acquiring the tracts of land upon which our future homeowners will reside. Additionally, Bill is in charge of developing ground and assisting in the acquisition of finished lots. Together with his expert team and skilled partners, Bill is challenged to turn raw ground into desirable home sites.

Bill has a wealth of knowledge as a Civil Engineer and as a former VP of Land with The Jones Company, Centex Homes and Pulte Homes. Prior to joining Payne Family Homes, Bill’s skill was employed by the Metropolitan Sewer District where he solidified his place as St. Louis’ storm water expert. Bill earned a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Missouri in 1973.

When away from the demands of his job, Bill enjoys annual getaways to Sanibel Island with his high school sweetheart (now wife of many years) and spending every minute possible with his three grandchildren.


Chief Financial Officer

Kevin Roy

Kevin keeps a sharp line on spending to ensure our buyers the very best value for their investment. Before coming to Payne Family Homes, Kevin Roy was the Corporate Controller at The Solae Company, a division of DuPont, which included locations in Europe, Brazil, Mexico, Venezuela, India, China and the U.S. His responsibilities at Solae included Accounting, Internal Controls, Payroll, and Accounts Payable. Prior to joining Solae, Kevin was with Deloitte & Touche for seven years in the St. Louis Audit practice.

He was a Board Member and Treasurer for the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition, a not-for-profit organization that focuses its efforts on finding foster and adoptive parents for foster children in the Greater St. Louis area. Now he has a role on the Coalition’s Finance Committee. Kevin holds a Master’s degree in Accounting from the University of Missouri-Columbia and obtained a Missouri CPA license.

Together with his wife and children, it is Kevin Roy’s ambition to visit every national park in the United States. He is well on his way to achieving this goal.


VP Sales & Marketing

Todd Lesher

Todd Lesher brings to Payne Family Homes over 20 years of homebuilding experience in both single-family and multifamily residential homebuilding. He has a strong passion for helping individuals and families obtain their dream of homeownership. In his new role, Lesher will be instrumental in spearheading Payne’s sales and marketing strategies, and management of the company’s design studio.

Most recently, Lesher served as Area Sales Manager for national homebuilding giant, DR Horton. Lesher was responsible for all facets of Sales and Marketing for 20 communities, including 50 employees, in the southern part of the Chicago market.

Prior to DR Horton, Lesher was director of sales at Lexington Homes, a Chicago based homebuilder. Before this, he was an associate sales manager for the Chicago division of Taylor Morrison Home Corp. where he earned the “Certified Sales Coach” award in 2015 and 2016, an award given to only one employee who is a top seller each year. He was also previously a sales representative for 14 years at Ryland Homes (now part of CalAtlantic Homes, a national homebuilder), where he sold more than 500 single-family homes and townhomes in the Chicago area.

Lesher is a graduate of Western Illinois University with a BA in Marketing.

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