Skip Phillips, one of the two remaining cofounders of the design/construction education group Genesis, has sold his design company.

Bart Jacobs, president of La Jolla Pools in El Cajon, Calif., has purchased Questar Pools and Spas, based in the San Diego-area city of Escondido, Calif.

“I wanted to work with somebody who I believed had integrity and was very detail-oriented,” Phillips said. “When I saw what he’d done on a remodel of his own pool, it simply reinforced that I’d picked the right person.”

Jacobs plans to keep the two companies separate. Phillips has signed a contract to continue designing with Questar for at least three more years, Jacobs said, after which they will reassess. As part of the deal, Phillips will continue traveling and working with a global clientele. He also will consult on the construction of designs for which La Jolla Pools gains the contract.

“Any design work I will continue to do through Questar,” he said. “It just has different ownership.”

In addition, Phillips has started a company for his expert witness and instructing work, called SP Education and Consulting. He will split his time between homes in Southern California and in the Dallas suburb of Tyler, Texas, as he has done for several years. He continues to own and run Pi Tape, a company started by his father, which makes precision measuring tapes for the aerospace industry.

Jacobs, a 22-year industry veteran, has worked primarily in the San Diego area. He purchased La Jolla Pools from Pat Patterson in 2006. After a few years, he sold the retail operation and service route to focus solely on construction. It generally builds six to 10 new pools and 15 renovation projects annually, Jacobs said.

He and Phillips met in 2005, when Jacobs began taking Genesis courses, and they have collaborated on several jobs in the past. Jacobs purchased Questar to provide him with deeper access to the high-end market, he said, though his construction outfit will not be guaranteed contracts for every project Phillips designs. “I just saw it as a good opportunity to get to a higher clientele level,” he said.

Phillips and Brian Van Bower, the other remaining Genesis cofounder, sold their organization to the National Swimming Pool Foundation in 2015. This completes Phillips’ effort to secure the future of the organizations he began, he said.

Phillips and Van Bower are under contract to remain with Genesis through the end of this year, at which point all parties will consider the duo’s possible future role. They will remain on the NSPF board, however.

Phillips entered the industry as a service technician before becoming a builder and designer. His service business, called Pool King, operated from 1975 to 1994. He began Questar in 1981. Several years back, Phillips gave up the construction part of the business and focused solely on design, often collaborating with Genesis members who would build. He, Van Bower and fellow designer/builder David Tisherman started Genesis in 1998. Phillips has performed expert witness work since 1984. He served as president of the Association of Pool and Spa Professional’s predecessor organization, the National Spa and Pool Institute, in 1992.

Phillips secured his design legacy long ago, as one of the two builders credited with popularizing vanishing-edge design in backyards through his seminars and media exposure of his own projects in the 1990s and early 2000s. The other is Lew Akins, formerly of the Texas firm Ocean Quest Pools by Lew Akins.

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