The passing of Al Rizzo earlier this month has reminded us all of the vast contributions Al made to our industry as a whole and our association specifically. We want to take a moment to reflect on the vital role Al played in the pool and spa industry here in the Northeast.
Al Rizzo first joined NESPA in 1958 and became the Connecticut Representative in 1962. Through his nearly five decades with the association, Al served in every elected and appointed position at NESPA, including President in 1984-85.
Seeing the need for a more local state-based trade association for his home state, Al started the Connecticut Swimming Pool Association (CONSPA) in 1967 and became its first president. He remained an active member of the Board of Directors of CONSPA until his retirement in 2009. He even served a second term as President from 2004 to 2006.
He still dedicated countless hours to supporting the industry in retirement by serving as the CONSPA's Government Relations Committee chair. He played a crucial role in the passage of the first-ever pool service and pool builders' license requirements by the Connecticut legislature and Department of Consumer Protection.
In addition to his work with NESPA and CONSPA, Al generously shared his expertise with our national association. He served as Education Chair of the Builders Council, and through his leadership, the Committee produced the first edition of the Builders Reference Manual in 1998. The manual still serves as a foundational piece of our training programs to this day.
Al was one of the 'fathers' of the association and played an instrumental role at the chapter, region, and national level shaping the industry and the association. He was chair of the Quarter Century Club before handing that torch to Bob Baron. He served on the NESPA board for over 30 years. Even those who did not get the privilege to meet him knew his legacy and benefited from his work. Al will be remembered by many, and his influence on our industry will be felt far beyond today.
For individuals interested in donating in Al Rizzo's memory, the family asks that donations be made to the Anthony Rizzo Training Grant program at NESPA. This program aims to enable individuals to take advantage of the education programs offered by NESPA's Professional Training Institute and assist members in reaching a higher level of professional performance.
Donations can be made online at www.nespapool.org
Checks can be mailed to
Anthony Rizzo Training Grant
6B South Gold Drive
Hamilton, NJ 08691