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GENESIS Announces New Faculty Members

  • Jan 27, 2020

For Immediate Release
January 27, 2019

Katie Wilke Junkers

(Murfreesboro, TN, January 27, 2020) GENESIS®, a company of the Pool & Hot Tub Alliance, is pleased to announce faculty members to their instructor roster.

“When Brian and I began this program more than 20 years ago, we built GENESIS on the ideals of providing quality education to the industry, and those ideals have not changed. Upon my return to GENESIS, my primary focus has been to find quality instructors for our students,” said Skip Phillips, SWD Master and GENESIS Ambassador. “With that goal, I cannot be more pleased with who we’ve secured for the start of the fall 2020 educational season. Joining GENESIS will be Greg Andrews; Terry Brannon, P.E.; Larry Drasin; Michael Given, SWD Registered; and Kate Wiseman, MLA. These instructors, along with current faculty, are poised to lead the industry and provide the accredited education necessary to the 1,800 plus students in the GENESIS program.”

Greg Andrews: Andrews is a nationally renowned and award-winning tile contractor and glass mosaic expert. While keeping active in installations, his focus in the past decade has gradually turned towards teaching, lecturing, training, and consulting. He also manages a pool-tile technical committee through National Tile and Stone Authority, a consulting firm that he co-founded.

Terry Brannon, P.E., GENESIS Construction and Engineering Faculty Chair: Brannon began his career in public works, beginning with the Cities of Irving and Tyler, Texas, before founding The Brannon Corporation.  He continues to specialize in public works projects, but the firm has carved out an aquatic niche using their expertise in water conveyance and treatment and structural design.  Brannon is licensed in several states and sits on the Board of Directors for two international corporations.

Larry Drasin: Drasin is an industrial designer who specializes in measured perspective drawing courses and special effects interiors for restaurants, microbreweries, and exhibitions. He’s a former manager of the product promotions department at Lockheed Aeronautical System Corporation. Drasin was the recipient of the UCLA Extension Department of the Arts Instructor of the Year Award in 2002 and 2009, and UCLA Extension Distinguished Instructor Award in 2010.

Michael Given, SWD Registered: Given is President and Founder of Michael Given Environments LLC, a Land & Waterscape Construction firm headquartered in Overland Park, Kansas. Michael has a BS in Landscape Design from Kansas State University and currently instructs classes on drawing, landscapes, and swimming pool design.

Kate Wiseman, MLA, GENESIS Design Faculty Chair: Wiseman is the principal landscape designer at Sage Outdoor Designs, a firm specializing in beautiful residential landscapes in Southern California. Her designs have been widely published both locally and nationally, and she has been recognized in San Diego Home and Garden Lifestyles “Gardens of the Year” contest four times, including the grand-prize winning design in 2007.

These instructors and faculty chairs join an extended team of devoted instructors providing education for GENESIS students, including:

Feras Irikat: Irikat is the director of design and marketing for Lunada Bay Tile, a leader in the design and production of handcrafted glass, stone, metal, wood and ceramic tiles. An expert tile designer across all mediums, Irikat holds a bachelor’s degree in interior design and a master’s degree in family and consumer sciences from San Francisco State University, where he also did advanced graduate work and research in color theory and color psychology. He has taught color theory, applications and psychology at SFSU, UC Santa Cruz extension, West Valley College, and design seminars around the world.

Jason Brownlee, SWD Registered:  Brownlee is owner and principal designer of J. Brownlee Design, a firm specializing in custom and creative outdoor living projects for residential and resort environments. His passion for design and collaboration is evident in the diversity, scale and style of his projects. Brownlee focuses on both aesthetics as well as technical considerations including hydraulic, and construction design details. He holds a bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture from Mississippi State University and is a registered landscape architect. His projects have won numerous national design awards and have been featured on HGTV and in other print and video media.

Don Gatzke, FAIA: Gatzke is an architect and educator with more than 35 years of experience practicing in several states. He has been a member of the architecture faculty at Tuskegee University, Tulane University and the University of Texas at Arlington. He served as dean of the Tulane School of Architecture from 1997-2004 and the School of Architecture at UT Arlington from 2004-2014 and now continues to teach and practice architecture. In 2014, Gatzke was honored by the Texas Society of Architects for “extraordinary contributions to the profession through the visionary leadership of architectural education.” In 2018, he was elevated to the College of Fellows of the American Institute of Architects.

Scott Hester, P.E. Scott Hester is president and principal-in-charge for Counsilman-Hunsaker. A truly hands-on leader, he monitors project development, shop drawings, coordination of construction issues with the project architects, and manages key construction staff. He provides comprehensive industry experiences, including business development, design and engineering, quality control and facility operations and services. He is a recognized leader in the aquatics industry and has shared this knowledge through educational presentations throughout the country.

“As we work with our instructors, GENESIS is concentrating on the future,” explained Sabeena Hickman, President and CEO, Pool & Hot Tub Alliance. “GENESIS has always led the industry on providing cutting-edge education for the residential design and build student. Providing our students, the ability to engage with collegiate-level instruction is incredible. Not only will they have new opportunities, but we can provide a fresh-look to education and ensure our students are gaining the knowledge they desire.”

Along with the announcement of their expanded instructor base, GENESIS is collaborating with industry professionals, reviewing its current programming, building new programs, and expanding class offerings for its students.

“To ensure GENESIS stays current with industry trends, technology, equipment, and student needs, we are collaborating with industry professionals, leaders, and organizations. Programs become stagnant without the involvement of outside sources and communication. An organization cannot thrive without listening to their attendees.” Phillips stated.

GENESIS will announce its new 2020 Fall/Winter Schedule later this summer.

For more information, please contact the GENESIS at 920-945-0546 or


Pool & Hot Tub Alliance Strategic Partners:

  • Biolab
  • Fluidra
  • Hayward
  • Heritage Pool Supply Group
  • Lou
  • Lyon Financial
  • Pentair
  • WatkinsWellness
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