Changing of the guard: Paul

Pennington (left) will be temporarily replacing George Pellington

(right), who stepped down as president late this

Changing of the guard: Paul Pennington (left) will be temporarily replacing George Pellington (right), who stepped down as president late this month.

With the departure of its president, Vac-Alert Industries has named a temporary replacement and hired a company for its marketing and sales.

George Pellington, an original inventor of the company’s safety vacuum release systems and president since last year, stepped down late this month. A civil sanitary engineer, he has taken a position with Water Treatment & Controls Co., a producer of water and wastewater equipment in Pensacola, Fla.

Pellington also will leave his posts on various pool and spa industry technical committees. He will remain a Vac-Alert stockholder and be available to offer technical advice and assistance to the firm.

In the wake of Pellington’s exit, the company has made two changes. Temporarily taking the helm will be Pellington’s immediate predecessor, Paul Pennington, who has been named acting president and managing member. The outspoken advocate for SVRS’s ended his tenure last year to head up the Pool Safety Council, an organization composed primarily of safety-product manufacturers. Pennington said he will continue to run PSC while temporarily leading Vac-Alert.

In addition, Vac-Alert has contracted with safety product manufacturer New Water Solutions of Topton, N.C., to take over marketing and sales of Vac-Alert’s product line. Overseeing the sales and marketing through a network of independent contractors had previously been part of Pellington’s duties. “Vac-Alert will just be a manufacturing company,” Pennington said.

New Water Solutions principal Ron Schroader previously worked for Vac-Alert and drain manufacturer Triodyne Safety Systems, and has participated in several safety-code development committees.

“Ron Schroader is dedicated to children’s safety and safety products in general, so he’s the perfect solution to handle Vac-Alert marketing,” Pennington explained.

Pellington, the departing president, is recognized not only as a key player in the invention and development of Vac-Alert’s product line, but as an educator about the technology. “I think George [made] major inroads in communication between all parties involved in standards and regulations,” Pennington said. “He is an engineer who has the ability to speak in laymen’s terms so that people understood the technology behind SVRS’s.”

Schroader viewed Pellington as a calming influence on the sometimes heated debate surrounding safety products. 

“He was always the voice of reason,” Schroader said. “He never had knee-jerk reactions; he never raised his voice. The industry’s losing a very powerful, intelligent individual.”