Watershape University Hires Mike Nantz, Lauren Stack

Wu Tile

Watershape University founders David Peterson and William Drakeley recently announced two key appointments to their rapidly developing organization. 

The first comes with a dash of panache as they tap Michael Nantz to serve as the university’s first “Dean of Culture.” The creatively titled position is intended to unify the educational offerings with the program’s cultural enrichment aspects.   

“My role as Dean of Culture will go far beyond the classroom,” Nantz says. “Through shared experiences, the pursuit of excellence and the value of giving back, Watershape University will transform the industry. I have been preparing for this role for a very long time and I am grateful for the opportunity to serve the University in this capacity.”

Nantz’ career as a designer, builder, consultant and industry educator spans more than 30 years. He has extensive experience teaching drawing with an eye toward architectural details, mostly for the Genesis 3 program where he was both a long-time student and instructor. He is principal of Elite Concepts, a design/build firm he established in 1991, based in Lewiston, Texas. 

“The dictionary defines ‘culture’ as a way of life for a group of people, meaning the way they do things,” Peterson explains. “People within a culture share outlook, attitudes, values and goals. With that in mind, we could think of no one more capable of creating a positive team culture within Watershape University than our new Dean, Mike Nantz.”

Less than two days following the Nantz appointment, WU sent out a press release announcing that industry veteran Lauren Stack will become the university’s vice president and will manage operations and administration.   

Peterson explains some of the recent history that has led to her new position: “Lauren was instrumental in leading the team of staff and volunteers who grew the Genesis business within NSPF, since the two entities merged in 2016. When reorganization under the Pool & Hot Tub Alliance left Lauren unemployed, Bill and I knew she would be a perfect fit for Watershape University.” 

Through her three-decade career in the industry, Stack has worked in a variety of capacities. She hopes to bring her vast experience and skill set to the new organization. “In addition to Managing Genesis within NSPF, I have led industry initiatives, coordinated market research surveys, organized many industry gatherings including three industry Summits and more during my time with legacy APSP,” she says. “I am honored and pleased that Bill and Dave reached out. Staying in the industry to bring value to students through education and credentialing, and nurturing my relationships to build a team to lead the industry, is important to me.”

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