Our company, Swimco, was founded by Dr. Lawrence Winkler in 1954 in the Washington Metropolitan Area. Swimco was the first professional swimming pool management company in the USA. After Dr. Winkler retired as President and became Chairman of the Board, Swimco was renamed Winkler Pool Management (WPM). In the early 1990s, the decision was made to open an office in the Tidewater region of Virginia, and it was decided that this new division would be named Swimco Pools.
Swimco’s sister company, WPM, runs over 200 swimming pools in the DC, MD and northern VA regions. Though Dr. Winkler recently retired as the Chairman of the Board, his son, Doug Winkler, is the President of both Swimco and WPM while Steve Wilmot is the Executive Vice-President of both companies. Doug and Steve hold the same respective positions in yet a third company, Swimkare, which is purely a swimming pool service and supply business that also caters to residential customers.
While the management of Swimco Pools is overseen by both Doug Winkler and Steve Wilmot, our Tidewater office is managed on-site by Vice President Butch Fodrie, who brings 30 years of experience in the aquatics industry to the business. The Virginia Beach location of Swimkare shares the same address as Swimco Pools, and these two companies, although separate entities, co-exist and support each other in their business goals.
Douglas S. Winkler - President
A graduate of George Washington University, and a proud and active alum, Doug started working for Swimco in 1972 as an Area Supervisor. The business, founded by his father, Dr. Lawrence Swimco in 1954 as Swimco, was the first pool management company of its kind in the country.
Having learned the business from the ground up, he took over as President in 1987. A “hands-on” president, Doug personally manages all the administrative and accounting work for this company as well as for two other businesses he owns with his partner, Steve Wilmot. With Steve’s enthusiasm for sales and Doug’s head for the numbers, they indeed continue to make a perfect team, almost 40 years later.
Although the staff at Swimco has certainly grown to the point where Doug should never have to venture out into the field to perform work at a pool, he often does. Thus, Doug maintains his “hands-on” approach and never asks someone to do anything he wouldn’t be willing to do himself.
Doug lives just outside of Annapolis, MD with his wife Pattie. He has two children, Brendan, who is a senior at Salisbury State University pursuing a double major in Accounting and Sports Management; and Kelsey, a sophomore at Elon College in North Carolina working on a Business major.
Doug is active on several volunteer boards including APSP (the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals) where he has been the local chapter Treasurer from 1999 to present, a member of the Regional Advisory Committee for Region 2 and, as of 2010, a member of the National Board of Directors. He also is the Director of Education for Region 2, and he has led the Region 2 Tech Schools program (an accredited technical training school which certifies both entry level and advanced swimming pool technicians) from year 2000 to present.
One of the original “die-hard” Redskin fans in the Washington area, Doug somehow maintains his optimism and positive outlook (despite the Redskins’ record) by reading, spending time at the beach with family and friends and attending almost all home games to cheer on his beloved GW Colonials basketball team.
Stephen C. Wilmot - Executive Vice President
Steve Wilmot is the Executive
Vice-President of Swimco and has been with the company since
1974. He worked his way up from the position of lifeguard, learning all aspects
of service and pool management, to become a partner in the business. His motto of
"think like an owner" has obviously served him well.
Steve is also a certified Pool Operator Instructor and frequently speaks to groups
on all aspects of management, service and sales. Truly the "quintessential" salesman
of our group, he never misses the opportunity to teach his employees how to hone their
sales skills whether it be selling chemicals, service or pool management.
He resides in Centreville, Virginia with his wife Kathy and their two teenage sons,
Spencer and Tyler. An avid golfer, he also enjoys spending his free time with family
and friends on the South River near Annapolis.
Butch Fodrie - Vice President
Butch Fodrie is
currently our Vice President of our Virginia Beach office (Swimco/Swimkare). Butch came to us in
the Spring of 2004 as a Service Tech for the Swimkare side of Swimco/Swimkare. He has risen through
the ranks to become a Service Manager, General Manager and finally the Vice President and head of
Swimco/Swimkare, VA beach. Of course as Vice President, he continues to perform a bit of all the
duties his other titles indicated as well as administrative and management duties that some with
running a dual purpose business of pool service and pool management.
Butch is currently married and has three grown children, two sons and a daughter, and is the proud
grandfather of two grandsons, ages 16 and 18. His hobbies include work (!), shooting pool, watching
and rooting for his favorite NCAA basketball team, North Carolina, as well as cheering on his favorite
football team, the Green Bay Packers.
Diyana Petrova - International Staffing Director/Recruiter - Email
Diyana directs the international student recruitment program and is the primary contact for J-1 employees. Diyana is from Bulgaria and graduated from Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski before coming to work in the United States. Her experience as a J-1 participant and an international recruiter has proven invaluable in the staffing process.
Diyana enjoys "endless summers,” meeting new people, spending time with good friends and visiting family in Bulgaria when time permits.
Cathrine Smith - Local/Regional Staffing Director -
Cathrine's bio will be posted soon!