Speak softly and carry a big… set of speakers.
No, that’s not quite what President Theodore Roosevelt wrote in a letter to Massachusetts politician Henry L. Sprague in 1900, but the twist makes it much more appropriate for Leon Moreau.
It’s more likely that you’ve heard and seen the 36-year-old Dover native’s work without ever having met him. Leon volunteers his time for just about every Lake Hopatcong Foundation event and gathering that calls for a public address announcer and some A/V support.
If you were pumped up by the music during the Lake Loop, thank Leon. If you got swept up in the live auction at the annual Gala, thank Leon. If you could clearly hear announcements being made during the Block Party, thank Leon.
You get the picture. More often than not, he’s a behind-the-scenes guy who creates the atmosphere and controls the pace of an event, but rarely takes a bow.
“Lake Hopatcong was a big part of my life, growing up in Mount Arlington,” said Leon. “Going to the beach, attending the boat races, dining out at a lake-area restaurant, relaxing on my parents’ boat in Byram Cove, watching the fireworks on the Fourth of July… That’s why volunteering in support of the Lake’s preservation was, and remains, so important to me.”
Leon was first recruited to volunteer for the LHF by his father, Lee Moreau, and long-time friend, Marty Kane. His premier performance was at the first Block Party, in 2014, when he was the public address announcer and stage manager for entertainment and demonstrations.
After graduating from Roxbury High School, Leon studied Visual and Media Arts at Emerson College in Boston, Mass. His earliest résumé included manning the front desk for the Frog Falls Aquatic Park at Picatinny Arsenal. He’s still employed by the U.S. Army there, but has a few more responsibilities these days, as a full-time Resource Management Analyst.
When he’s not at work, Leon is likely to be found indulging his interest in model railroading (ask him about his collection of Lionels), railroad history and train preservation.
Staying on that same track, his dream is to, one day, own a luxury railcar and travel around the country. In the meantime, in addition to his dedication to the LHF, Leon also volunteers for the Tri-State Railway Historical Society.
Not surprisingly, Leon also serves on the LHF Train Station Committee, which focuses on restoration of the historic Hopatcong train station in Landing, which will accommodate the LHF headquarters this fall.
While Leon comes across as an unassuming Clark Kent-type figure, there’s also a bit of Superman in him. He twice completed the grueling Bataan Memorial Death March (2012 and 2015), an annual 26.2-mile procession at the U.S. Army White Sands Missile Range, N.M.
It’s held to honor the memory of American and Filipino prisoners of war who, during World War II, were forced by their captors to endure a 65-mile hike—the aptly named Bataan Death March—through the Philippine jungle during World War II. The event is also a fundraiser for the Greater New Mexico Food Bank.
Fortunately, volunteering for the LHF is slightly less grueling than slogging out a marathon-distance trek across desert terrain.
“The people at the LHF—trustees, staff and volunteers—are amazing,” Leon said. “The enthusiasm and talent everyone brings to the table is impressive, and the growing network of people who step up to support the LHF is evidence of the impact Lake Hopatcong has on so many people, along with all the good that it inspires.”
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Leon resides in Dover. Besides his father, Lee, Leon’s family includes his mother MaryAnn Moreau, sister Lauren Maier-Moreau, and two felines, Kirby and Squid.