Olympic swimming legend Michael Phelps took part in a celebration event to highlight the career achievements of Master Spas founder and CEO Bob Lauter ahead of his retirement at the end of 2022.
Almost 200 of Master Spas’ top dealers from a global network, along with special guest Michael, converged for the company’s International Dealer Meeting at the J.W. Marriott Resort in Marco Island, Florida, and to mark the retirement of the company’s founder, who has been a leader in the hot tub market for over 40 years and has been Master Spas CEO for more than 25 years.
In his role as CEO, Bob has sat on several boards and received numerous honours for his contribution to the industry including the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals INSPIRE Award, the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award, the Better Business Bureau Torch Award for Marketplace Ethics and in 2018 he was inducted into the Greater Fort Wayne Business Hall of Fame. He has also served as president of the International Hot Tub Association.
“I feel very blessed to have worked with Bob Lauter for over 25 years at Master Spas,” divulged Master Spas President Terry Valmassoi.
“It has been a fun journey together to see the company grow beyond expectations, and to have such an amazing team and dealers that make up the Master Spas family. Master Spas would not exist without Bob, and I am thankful for his vision, leadership, and friendship.”
Master Spas Vice President of Marketing and Sales Kevin Richards led a discussion between Bob and Michael Phelps at the final celebration during the dealer meeting event, which helped to showcase the innovative approach by Master Spas to the spa industry, a path that was paved with successes and led by the company’s founder who will remain as Chairman of the Board after his retirement at the end of December. Bob, pictured centre, has been married to his wife Sherry for nearly 50 years and they have three grown children, as well as 16 grandchildren.
As part of the discussion, Kevin Richards asked Michael, pictured right, to share his advice on retirement and he suggested: “I would say fill your time with things that you are passionate about but he’s retiring to spend more time with his family. You see how much passion and love he has for his family.”
According to Bob, the highlight of his career has been the partnership between Master Spas and the 23-time Gold medal winner, which commenced over a decade ago in 2010. During the celebration event Michael also revealed the importance of this partnership for his swimming success, which was inspirational in developing the Michael Phelps range of signature swim spas.
“For me, looking back, the partnership is almost like a dream come true,” divulged Michael; “I was able to use the swim spa as part of my training, and it helped me develop the best freestyle stroke I ever had in my career.”
Michael also highlighted that the partnership was more than just about increasing his performance and his status as a legendary Olympic Gold Medal-winning swimmer.
“It’s the passion. It’s the dream. It’s the dedication,” declared Michael. “I saw it then and I see it even more now.”