Steve D’Onfro, president of Advantis Technologies and an experienced CPA, died Aug. 13. He was 49.

D’Onfro headed the Alpharetta, Ga.-based manufacturer for more than a decade.

“He had extensive financial and management experience,” said Michael Moore, vice president of marketing. “But more than that, he was very much a people person, always known for his enthusiasm and optimistic outlook.”

Born in Leominster, Mass., Aug. 24, 1958, D’Onfro attended Syracuse University, where he received an accounting degree in 1980, before earning a CPA in 1982.

Prior to entering the pool industry, D’Onfro worked for well-known financial firms Touche Ross and Pricewaterhouse Coopers.

In 1987, D’Onfro joined Gary Chemical Corp. as CFO. Gary Chemical was a subsidiary of the same firm that owned the company which eventually became Advantis. In 1997, D’Onfro officially came on board as Advantis’ general manager. Within a year, he was named president.

Those who knew him saw it as a perfect fit. “This industry is unique because of its closeness, being small,” Moore said. “He absolutely thrived in that kind of community.”

Keith Lewis, who became Advantis president after D’Onfro’s passing, agreed: “I think his major legacy is the deep respect with which he treated everybody, regardless of their positions in or out of the company.”

D’Onfro also is remembered as an avid fisherman. “Freshwater, saltwater, anything,” Moore said. D’onfro’s home office was at the lake where he fished as a teen.

A memorial service was held Aug. 24, D’Onfro’s birthday. “The huge number of [attendees] was a striking testament to the lives he touched in every way,” Lewis said.

D’Onfro is survived by his wife, Beth, and daughters Katherine, Jillian and Madeline.