Meet The AQUA Choice Judges

Every year the AQUA Choice judges are presented with a formidable task: out of a plethora of exquisite beauties, pick just 11. A rating system helps (pools and spas are given points for aesthetics, technical difficulty and innovation) but in the end, it's a subjective decision. So while we present 11 winners that represent the best efforts of the panel, the contest celebrates the pool builder's art as a whole, and a great many AQUA Choice entries furthered that goal.

As is the case every year, a spot was reserved for a manufactured pool to demonstrate what can be done without the use of free-form gunite walls. And another place was reserved for a non-pool entry — a lone spa installation or water feature.

Interestingly, there was a fine but completely unintentional regional balance among the winners, with champions hailing from all corners of the U.S. and Canada. Each project will be featured individually in upcoming issues of AQUA Magazine.

AQUA was honored to have a panel of judges comprised of builders of great distinction, former AQUA Choice winners all. They took the selection process extremely seriously, and discussions of each project could have formed the basis for an excellent pool-building seminar.

Barry JustusBarry JustusBarry Justus, owner of Poolscape, Burlington, Ontario, is a Gold level member of the Genesis 3 Design Group and a 30-year veteran of the pool and landscaping industry. Ninety-four percent of Poolscape projects built between 2005 and 2010 won a national or international award, including the 2010 AQUA Choice award.

Jeff GaleJeff GaleAfter a 24-year career as an engineer with Hewlett-Packard, Jeff and Sandy Gale started Pacific Pools of St. George, in St. George, Utah. For the last 6 years they've been building very well engineered vinyl-liner, fiberglass and concrete pools as well as splash parks and fountains. Pacific Pools of St. George won the AQUA Choice award in 2010.

Andre Del Re & Lisa NorthAndre Del Re & Lisa NorthWith a background in mechanical engineering, Andre Del Re began his career as a machinist in the South African gold mines, where he developed a passion for hydraulics design and engineered structures. In 1984, he moved to the US and began his career in the pool industry, joining Lisa North in 2001 to launch Da Vida Pools, an award-winning pool building company located in Austin, Texas. Lisa North is a Certified Building Professional and Management Consultant with MS and BS degrees in Logistics and Operations Management. She entered the pool industry with Andre Del Re in 2001 with the intention of challenging the traditional mindset about pool design and construction.

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