J. Edward Hamel graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 1961 with a degree in Civil Engineering, after serving in the U.S. Army with the 82nd Airborne. He began his career with the Carl M. Freeman Company, advancing from Assistant Superintendent to Project Manager. In July of 1966, he joined Thomas P. Harkins, Inc. in Silver Spring, Maryland as a Project Manager. Initially, he handled all of the multi-family construction for the Rouse Company in the new town of Columbia, Maryland, completing approximately 800 units.
In 1974, Mr. Hamel started Harkins Commercial, Inc., as a division of Thomas P. Harkins, Inc. Harkins Commercial, Inc., incorporated in 1976, successfully constructed eighty projects. During the period from 1974 to 1978, Mr. Hamel advanced from General Manager to President and Owner of Harkins Commercial, Inc. On February 16, 1988, Hamel Commercial, Inc. was incorporated in the State of Maryland and subsequently relocated to Elkridge, Maryland.