APSP announced this afternoon that its board of directors has unanimously voted to install industry veteran Lawrence Caniglia as its new president and CEO.

Caniglia comes from NESPA, where he served as the organization’s executive director for nearly 14 years. In his position, he provided benefits and services to nearly 850-member companies while also directing activities of the NESPA Foundation. In September, he announced plans to step down from NESPA to pursue the next phase of his association-focused career. 

Caniglia distinguished himself at NESPA by building relationships across the industry, advancing professionalism and licensing in the Northeast region, growing the association's membership and championing a culture where members actively engaged in planning and executing key programs and activities.

He succeeds APSP's departing president and CEO, Rich Gottwald, who has been credited with rebuilding the organization's financial position, increasing its membership by more than 20 percent, establishing APSP as the industry's leading government advocacy voice nationwide, growing its exceptional educational offerings and expanding its industry affiliations in the U.S. and internationally.    

"Larry Caniglia is the ideal leader to build on the incredible foundation and momentum that Rich Gottwald and our outstanding staff have built in recent years," says APSP Board Chair Chris Curcio. "He comes from a member-driven culture that is focused on providing excellent education, he is an established and respected leader and his relationships within the industry are second to none."  

Caniglia will be charged with advancing APSP's strategic goals, including creating a world-class industry educational system, developing uniform codes and standards to benefit the industry and serve consumers and continuing to provide industry-wide government relations leadership. His proven relationship building and networking skills are particularly well-suited for growing the association's influence and advancing key initiatives, such as the recently launched PPSO Professional Pool & Spa Operator Course and APSP University's other expansive course offerings. He also brings a track record of proactive government relations advocacy across the gamut of licensing, design, construction and safety issues.

Caniglia, a certified Association Executive, has been active in a variety of national and state association executive groups, and was honored in 2016 as the Distinguished Member of the Year for the Mid-Atlantic Society of Association Executives. In addition to his regional leadership, Caniglia has extensive experience collaborating with APSP and other industry organizations through participation in summits and conferences, and work on national government relations action committees and a variety of state initiatives. The addition of Caniglia to APSP will help strengthen and grow the special and mutually-beneficial relationship between NESPA and APSP.

"This opportunity is the absolute perfect fit for me because it extends my passion for association work while leveraging my deep relationships and experience in this industry," Caniglia says. "I have long respected the leadership and staff at APSP and am beyond excited to be working with them going forward to promote and protect the industry and help grow members' businesses."

Caniglia will officially assume his new position at APSP in February, and will work closely with Rich Gottwald, who has agreed to stay at APSP for several months in an advisory position, to assist with the transition and continue to advance the outstanding APSP University education programs and foundation initiatives.