Randy Mendioroz oversaw thousands of projects during his career at the Aquatic Design Group in Carlsbad, Calif., which he started in 1986. According to the World Waterpark Association, where he was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2013, his firm’s projects were constructed in 36 states and 20 countries. Some, like the Lost City project at Sun City in South Africa, were among the largest, most complex in the world. But the firm’s bread-and-butter work was the competition pools that Mendioroz and business partner Scott Ferrell did for school districts and universities.

One of the keys to their success was a partnership in which each did the work they were good at. Mendioroz went out and found the jobs and Ferrell, a licensed architect, got their designs into production.

“I’ll tell you the secret to it,” Ferrell said. “He was in charge of running the business and the marketing end of it. I was in charge of the production side, so we kind of stayed out of each other’s way and allowed each other to use our talents to the best of our abilities.”

What Mendioroz was good at was marketing his ideas and dealing with people.

Much as he liked the business, he also had other interests. He and wife Syndea traveled extensively, tracking down family connections in Spain, Nicaragua, Mexico, Germany and Denmark.

Mendioroz, 58, died of liver cancer Nov. 20, 2013, leaving his wife, three children and six grandchildren. More than 500 attended his funeral.

Thanks to a succession plan set up by the ADG partners, their replacements are already on board.