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Zac Foundation & Ben Carlson Foundation Create California Water Safety Coalition

The coalition will be launched formally next year at the California Water Safety Summit

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California Water Safety Coalition - Zac Foundation / Ben Carson Foundation

The Zac Foundation and The Ben Carlson Memorial & Scholarship Foundation Collaborate to Create California Water Safety Coalition to Coordinate Develop and Implement Water Safety Policies and Programs

GREENWICH, CT/NEWPORT BEACH, CA  November 17, 2021 The ZAC Foundation (TZF), a national nonprofit based in Greenwich, Conn. dedicated to improving water safety by funding education and effective programming, today announced its partnership with the  Ben Carlson Memorial & Scholarship Foundation, a Newport Beach, Calif. based nonprofit promoting beach and ocean safety and assisting in higher education for lifeguards, to create the California Water Safety Coalition to fill a leadership gap in the state’s water safety sector and lead statewide strategy in the development, implementation, and evaluation of water safety policy and educational programs.

California drowning prevention and water safety stakeholders outlined the Coalition’s vision and mission this week during a collaborative online workshop hosted by both foundations. While many of the government, nonprofit, family foundation, and individual stakeholders participating in the summit have collaborated in the past, as a Coalition, they will be able to unite around best practices that will be effective in preventing drowning in pools, lakes, rivers and the ocean.

In California, drowning caused an annual average of 399 deaths between 2005 and 2019, 400 non-fatal hospitalizations between 2005 and 2015, and 1,041 non-fatal emergency department visits between 2006 and 2015. Drowning is the leading cause of injury related death for children under five years old in the state and ranks in the top five unintentional injury related causes of death for all other ages.

“Each drowning is a tragic event with an untold impact on family members, rescue and medical personnel and the community at-large,” said Karen Cohn, co-founder of The ZAC Foundation. “The ZAC Foundation is honored to provide key support and critical funding to help turn this alliance into a reality and start saving lives.”

Cohn noted that a national drowning prevention plan is crucial in the United States because drowning is the leading cause of death for children ages one to four after birth defects. For every child who dies from drowning, another five receive emergency care for nonfatal submersion injuries.

Chris Carlson, co-founder of the Ben Carlson Foundation expressed his enthusiasm for both the partnership and for the important work that is being taken on by the California Water Safety Coalition:  “The ZAC Foundation is supercharging the water safety work in California by providing financial resources and more importantly by introducing us to individuals with the experience and know-how to effectively organize efforts of this type.  This is no small task when trying to align and harness the energy of so many drowning prevention experts.  We are so grateful for Karen Cohn and Megan Ferraro for what they are doing to support and push this effort forward.”

A principal function of the Coalition will be to prepare participants to implement the National Water Safety Action Plan when it is announced spring 2022 after years of input from water safety advocates nationwide, including from The ZAC Foundation and other California-based water safety leaders, following a recommendation by the World Health Organization for nations to address the drowning crisis globally. Some countries, such as the United Kingdom, Australia, Jamaica, and Barbados, already have drowning prevention plans.

The Leadership Group helping to spearhead the creation of the Coalition, includes:

·       Megan Ferraro, Executive Director, The ZAC Foundation

·       Will Koon, UNSW Beach Safety Research Group

·       Julie Lopiccolo, Co-Founder & President, Jasper Ray Foundation

·       Rob Williams, Ben Carlson Memorial & Scholarship Foundation

Coalition Workgroup Chairs and their respective areas of expertise include:

·       Data / Public Health Surveillance: Erin Malone, MPH, Program Coordinator, Riverside University Health System – Public Health, Injury Prevention Services

·       Life Jackets / Personal Flotation Devices and Other Flotation: Melissa Miranda, Boating Education and Outreach Manager, California Department of Parks and Recreation 

·       Lifeguards / Supervision: Pete DeQuincy, Lifeguard Services Manager, Fire Department/ Lifeguard Services, East Bay Regional Park District

·       Barriers, Entrapment & Electrical Safety: Marcia Kerr, Drowning Prevention FoundationMary Ann Downing, National Drowning Prevention Alliance

·       Water Safety, Water Competence, Swimming Lessons: Nicole McNeill, District Manager, City of San Diego, Parks and Recreation Department

·       CPR / Rescue: Leslie Schwene, Marine Safety Officer, City of Huntington BeachKristin Thompson, EMS Division Chief, City of Newport Beach

Operating guidelines of the Coalition will be announced next year. For more information on the summit, please visit cawatersafety.org

About The ZAC Foundation

The ZAC Foundation was established in 2008 by Karen and Brian Cohn after the loss of their 6-year-old son Zachary Archer Cohn in a pool drain entrapment in their backyard swimming pool. Through education and advocacy, the Foundation has helped more than 20,000 children and their families learn about the importance of water safety and prepare for a lifetime of water safety. To learn more about The ZAC Foundation, connect with us on Facebook and www.thezacfoundation.org.

About the Ben Carlson Memorial and Scholarship Foundation

The Ben Carlson Memorial & Scholarship Foundation was formed in honor of Ben Carlson, a collegiate water polo player, surfer, and waterman who was the first and only Newport Beach Lifeguard to die in the line of duty since the service was formed in 1923. The Foundation provides annual scholarships and actively engages in water safety programs in California and around the globe.

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Marianne Trusty is a Press Correspondent for the pool & spa industry. A published author and social media influencer reaching over 20 million people around the world each day. Contact Marianne about publishing op-editorials, breaking pool news and press releases at mtrusty@poolmagazine.com.

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Press Releases

PHTA Announces 2021 Award Recipients

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PHTA Announces 2021 Award Recipients

(Alexandria, Va.)—The Pool & Hot Tub Alliance is proud to announce the winners of its 2021 Awards, including Builder of the Year, Certified Service Professional of the Year, Retailer of the Year, and Young Professional of the Year. 

This year’s award winners are as follows: 

Builder of the Year

Joseph Vassallo, Jr., Paragon Pools

The Builder of the Year Award is a peer-nominated award. It is awarded to a CBP who has advanced the pool building profession through outstanding achievements and dedication to the industry.

Las Vegas Pool Builder - Joseph Anthony Vassallo, Vice President & Chief Design Executive of Paragon Pools was named the Pool & Hot Tub Alliance (PHTA) 2021 Builder of the Year

Joseph Vassallo, Jr. has influenced the advancement of the industry through his commitment to providing pools and spas that exceed the industry and state standards, earning him and the company a multitude of industry and professional awards. These awards and recognitions credit his extensive knowledge of design and building of superior pools/spas as well as acknowledges his integrity as a professional businessman. Beyond that, he has been involved both personally and through his company Paragon Pools in a variety of charity programs and activism over the years. He has provided finances, resources, given of his time, and recruited others to support worthy causes in the community. His involvement shows the residents, fellow businesses, and media how devoted he (and the company) are to the building a sustainable community bringing positive awareness of pool industry professionals.

Certified Service Professional of the Year 

Noel Conley, Miracle Pool Service, Inc.

The Certified Service Professional of the Year Award is a peer-nominated award. Each year, it is awarded to one CSP who has advanced the service profession through outstanding achievements and dedication to the industry.

Noel Conley, Miracle Pool Service, Inc. - Certified Service Professional of the Year 

Noel Conley served for nine years as a subject matter expert for the industry and was instrumental in creating the North Texas Chapter’s Dive into Recovery program to help disabled veterans. He also teaches PHTA’s certification courses and helps develop testing and training material. He has served on the Texas Pool and Spa Coalition, the North Texas Chapter Board of Directors, the PHTA Service Council, the PHTA Education Committee, and was named a PHTA Fellow in 2016.

Retailer of the Year

Crystal Pools, Elizabethtown, PA

The Retailer of the Year Award recognizes one outstanding retailer that has advanced the retail profession through outstanding achievements and dedication to the industry. 

Crystal Pools - Elizabethtown, PA - PHTA Retailer of the Year

This company’s success is due to the focus it has on training its employees. Each employee working in the store must go through extensive product training so that they can answer questions and assist in product selection based upon their customers’ needs. Beyond that, they are active within their community. They are engaged with the Make-A-Wish Foundation and annually provide and install aboveground pools for very ill children.

Josh Culp accepted the award on behalf of Crystal Pools.

Young Professional of the Year

Allen Jerabeck, Tarson Pools & Spas

The Young Professionals of the Year Award recognizes forward-thinking leaders under the age of 40 who will be the voice and next generation of pool and spa professionals.

Allen Jerabeck is a pool and spa specialist for Tarson Pools & Spas in North Syracuse, NY. Allen is a CPO and a member of WAVE and has received numerous awards of excellence for his service and skill over the past 6 years. Originally from California, Allen spent the past two years elevating his company by not only using better components in his builds, but also focusing on creating better processes and applying new technologies.

Allen Jerabeck, Tarson Pools & Spas - PHTA Young Professional of the Year

“We are proud to honor each of these outstanding pool and spa professionals,” says PHTA President and CEO Sabeena Hickman, CAE. “Thanks to the incredible work of these dedicated leaders, our industry continues to grow, evolve, and flourish. Congratulations to all of our 2021 winners!”

For more information, please contact Janay Rickwalder, PHTA’s Vice President of Communications and Public Relations, at jrickwalder@phta.org or 703.357.3918.

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About the Pool & Hot Tub Alliance 

The Pool & Hot Tub Alliance (PHTA), a non-profit organization with nearly 3,500 members from around the world, was established in 1956 to support, promote, and protect the common interests of the $36.5B pool, hot tub and spa industry. PHTA provides education, advocacy, standards development, research, and market growth to increase our members’ professionalism, knowledge and profitability. Additionally, PHTA facilitates the expansion of swimming, water safety and related research and outreach activities aimed at introducing more people to swimming, making swimming environments safer and keeping pools open to serve communities. For more information, visit www.phta.org

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Press Releases

Latham Announces Acquisition of Radiant Pools

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Latham Acquires Radiant Pools for $90 million

LATHAM, N.Y., Nov. 30, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Latham Group, Inc. (“Latham” or “the Company”), the largest designer, manufacturer, and marketer of in-ground residential swimming pools in North America, Australia, and New Zealand, today announced that it has acquired Radiant Pools for approximately $90 million. The acquisition expands Latham’s product portfolio into vinyl-lined, aluminum-walled swimming pools, which are an affordable option that allow consumers to create the ultimate backyard experience, and which provide solutions for a variety of backyard pool applications.

Based in Albany, NY, Radiant Pools was formed in 2005 following its acquisition of Trojan Pools, who invented the vinyl-lined, aluminum-walled category in 1957. Radiant Pools uses patented technology, derived from aerospace engineering, to make structurally insulated wall panels, which makes its products a durable and aesthetically pleasing option for homeowners. Vinyl-lined, aluminum-walled pools can be installed fully in-ground or fully above-ground, depending on homeowner needs. They can also be installed on slopes and be partially in-ground and partially above-ground.

“Radiant Pools is an excellent addition to Latham’s product portfolio since it complements our existing business and enables us to expand our addressable market,” said Scott Rajeski, President and Chief Executive Officer of Latham. “Radiant Pools primarily serves the Northeastern U.S., giving us the opportunity to roll its outstanding products across North America in partnership with Latham’s industry-leading dealer network. We are excited to welcome Radiant Pools to the Latham family and look forward to working with Tony Sirco, Radiant Pools’ prior owner, who will stay on as a partner and oversee its integration into Latham.”

“Radiant Pools pioneered the vinyl-lined, aluminum-walled swimming pools category with a premium quality product. Latham has been a long-standing partner of ours, and we share a dedication to providing superior products to dealers and homeowners,” said Tony Sirco, President of Radiant Pools. “As part of the Latham family, we believe that we can accelerate our strong growth, and we look forward to a bright future together.”

Radiant Pools generates approximately $35 million in annual sales. The acquisition was funded through a combination of Latham’s existing cash and incremental borrowing under the Company’s revolving credit facility, which was amended to provide for incremental term loans in an aggregate principal amount of $50 million. The acquisition is expected to have no material impact on Latham’s fiscal 2021 outlook.

About Latham Group, Inc.
Latham Group, Inc., headquartered in Latham, NY, is the largest designer, manufacturer and marketer of in-ground residential swimming pools in North America, Australia and New Zealand. Latham has a coast-to-coast operations platform consisting of over 2,000 employees across 32 facilities.

About Radiant Pools
Headquartered in Albany, NY, Radiant Pools is the market leading manufacturer of vinyl liner aluminum swimming pools that can be built completely in-ground, semi-in-ground, or above ground. Radiant Pools products are sold directly to swimming pool dealers throughout North America.

Forward-looking Statements
Some of the statements contained in this press release are forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. These forward-looking statements are generally identified by the use of words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “potential,” “predict,” “project,” “should,” “target,” “will,” “would” and, in each case, their negative or other various or comparable terminology. These forward-looking statements reflect our views with respect to future events as of the date of this release and are based on our management’s current expectations, estimates, forecasts, projections, assumptions, beliefs and information. Although management believes that the expectations reflected in these forward-looking statements are reasonable, it can give no assurance that these expectations will prove to have been correct. All such forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, many of which are outside of our control, and could cause future events or results to be materially different from those stated or implied in this document. It is not possible to predict or identify all such risks. These risks include, but are not limited to: secular shifts in consumer demand for swimming pools and spending on outdoor living spaces; slow pace of material conversion from concrete pools to fiberglass pools in the pool industry; general economic conditions and uncertainties affecting markets in which we operate and economic volatility that could adversely impact the Company’s business, including the COVID-19 pandemic; the Company’s ability to integrate Radiant Pools effectively and exposure to unforeseen or undisclosed liabilities of Radiant Pools, the ability of the Company’s suppliers to continue to deliver the quantity or quality of materials sufficient to meet the Company’s needs to manufacture the Company’s products and other risks, uncertainties and factors described under the section titled “Risk Factors” in the registration statement on Form S-1 filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) by the Company, as well as other filings that the Company will make, or has made, with the SEC, such as Annual Reports on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K. These factors should not be construed as exhaustive and should be read in conjunction with the other cautionary statements that are included in this press release and in other filings. We expressly disclaim any obligation to publicly update or review any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise, except as required by applicable law.

Investor Contact:
Nicole Briguet
Edelman for Latham
latham@edelman.com

Media Contact:
Crista Leigh Wunsch
CristaLeighWunsch@lathampool.com

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PHTA Deems Pool | Spa | Patio EXPO a Huge Success

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PHTA Deems International Pool Spa Expo a Success

The Pool & Hot Tub Alliance’s participation in the Pool | Spa | Patio Expo that was held last week in Dallas, Texas, was an overwhelming success. PHTA President & CEO Sabeena Hickman, CAE, noted, “It was great to have the industry together after two long years. The attendees were engaged, the energy was at an all-time high, and our educational sessions and booths were flooded throughout the week.”

“People come to the PSP Expo to see what the industry has to offer,” said PHTA Chairman of the Board Andy Levinson of PoolCorp. “It’s a once-a-year opportunity to kick the tires on new technologies, network with colleagues, and attend educational programs that can improve business. This year, PHTA strived to provide an experience for our members. I think it’s safe to say that we hit the ball out of the park.”

PHTA launched several new initiatives for the industry, such as a Mentoring Program, Safety Program, and Resource Center that are free to members and offer tremendous resources to grow their business. In addition, the PHTA Apprenticeship Program for service and maintenance professionals was well received and met with tremendous enthusiasm.

“Our members have experienced so much in recent years, with the significant increase in business coupled with product and labor shortages,” said Hickman. “As an association, our job is to provide solutions that support our members’ needs. I was pleased to see the keynote session come back and enjoyed how Wallace J. Nichols and Rowdy Gaines set the tone for the event.”

PHTA also showcased new education initiatives, including new certification pathways and a CEO Forum with Cornell University that addressed business management in volatile and uncertain times. Additionally, PHTA launched a complete rebrand for GENESIS®, its education program. PHTA educated 1,000 industry professionals through the various sessions offered throughout the event, which included pre-conference workshops, education programs within the EXPO and on the show floor.

The GENESIS® program is the premier education platform for pool professionals,” said GENESIS® Ambassador Brian Van Bower. “And, because the world has changed, so have we. We have expanded our program to deliver education every day in every way, and our new brand represents our future. Our education, as well as the annual Winemaker’s Dinner, were sold out and the momentum for this program continues to build.”

Next year’s event will take place in Las Vegas from November 15-17, 2022.

About the Pool & Hot Tub Alliance

The Pool & Hot Tub Alliance (PHTA), a non-profit organization with nearly 3,500 members from around the world, was established in 1956 to support, promote, and protect the common interests of the $36.5B pool, hot tub and spa industry. PHTA provides education, advocacy, standards development, research, and market growth to increase our members’ professionalism, knowledge and profitability. Additionally, PHTA facilitates the expansion of swimming, water safety and related research and outreach activities aimed at introducing more people to swimming, making swimming environments safer and keeping pools open to serve communities. For more information, visit www.phta.org

Featured Photo: Designer Dialogues: How I Deal With Client Changes – Panel: Skip Phillips, Jason Brownlee, Paul John Boulifard, Kate Wiseman, Feras Irikat
Photo Credit: Joe Trusty – Pool Magazine

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