Pleatco, the Glen Cove, N.Y.-based manufacturer of pool and spa filtration products, and co-sponsor Genesis, have opened the Pleatco 2016 Perfect Pool Guy, Pool Gal contest.

Through this contest, organizers search for the best pool and spa service technicians across the United States, and internationally, through submissions. This year marks its 9th anniversary and the first year the National Swimming Pool Foundation (NSPF) joins as a co-sponsor.

Winners will receive a trip for two to the International Pool, Spa, and Patio Expo in New Orleans, as well as free admission to the Genesis Basic Pool Construction Course, (listed as a $5,000 value), recognition at an awards gala, the chance to participate in a national marketing campaign, and free products from Pleatco.

For its part, NSPF will provide free access to its new Advanced Service Technician (AST) Certification Course to all finalists.

“We recognize the crucial role every pool service technician plays, we are honored to celebrate them, and we are pleased to offer our new AST online course as a major prize for each and every finalist to nurture continued growth,” said NSPF's CEO, Thomas Lachocki, Ph.D.

Nominations can come from the technicians themselves, from customers or other industry professionals. To submit a nominee, go to Pleatco’s website. The process includes filling out a questionnaire and submitting a written testimonial, along with photos or video. The deadline for entries is September 30, and voting takes place from October 1-9. Finalists will be contacted by Pleatco between October 12 and 15. Pleatco will announce winners on its website and present the awards at the PSP in New Orleans in November 2016.

“Over the nine years that Pleatco has run this contest, we’ve learned that being a professional pool or spa service technician is more than a job…it’s a passion," said Pleatco CEO Howard Smith. "Many homeowners treat their service guy or gal like family; it’s a special relationship."