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About the Bay Area Public Pool Operators Association

Over the years, the Bay Area Public Pool Operators Association (BAPPOA) has grown from a small group of pool operators meeting every other month to a much larger group that continues to meet on the original schedule. In January 2009, BAPPOA adopted by-laws and is on it’s way to becoming a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.  BAPPOA continues to meet six times each year, and hosts social events, educational trainings and competitions. Monitoring changing legislation and guidelines, and conducting up to four surveys each year are other valuable services BAPPOA provides to it’s membership.

The Steering Committee was formed in the late 80’s to assist in guiding the operations of the Bay Area Public Pool Operators Association. With the formal organization of BAPPOA, the Steering Committee became a Board of Directors.  There are 7 Board Members, all members of BAPPOA.  Each Board Member currently serves a term of two years on the board and then rotates off.  The nomination process allows for the election of three to four new members to the Board each year. Board Members may run for consecutive terms.

The Board of Directors meets a minimum of 4 times a year.

Meet Your 2024 Board Members

President - Thomas Prusinovski

Hayward Area Recreation and Park District

Hello, BAPPOA members, My name is Tom Prusinovski and I am currently a Recreation Coordinator over the Aquatics Program at Hayward Area Recreation and Park District.  I am honored to have been nominated and elected to be your next BAPPOA Vice President.

I started my career in aquatics as a lifeguard when I was 15 years old and have been working in aquatics ever since.  I have a passion for training and hold certifications in Water Safety and Lifeguard Instructor Trainer, but equally enjoy stepping into a lifeguard rotation or teaching a swim lesson.

One of my favorite parts of BAPPOA is the lifeguard games.  From 1997-2002 I participated in BAPPOA lifeguard games and have been involved with the games ever since either as a team coach or as an event judge.  Looking back, without lifeguard games and the lifelong friends I`ve made through BAPPOA I probably would not have made the career decision to stay in the field of aquatics.

My goal as Vice President will be to get as many agencies as possible to join and regularly attend BAPPOA membership meetings.  I would also promote and encourage participation in lifeguard games so the Lifeguards of today can have the same amazing or better experience I had.  I also want to focus on encouraging all agencies with aquatic programs to become members and work together as we are stronger together.

Vice President - Tara Deffley

City of Napa

Responsible for: Lifeguard Games, BAPPOMA Chair, Elections, and bylaws.

Behold, fellow aquatics enthusiasts! I am Tara Deffley, your elected Vice President of BAPPOA for 2024. Currently, as a Recreation Coordinator with the City of Napa, I have the pleasure of overseeing Aquatics, Special Needs, and Employee Safety. My passion for aquatics has been a constant flame since 2005 when I began my career with the East Bay Regional Park District. Over the years, I have worked with several organizations in the Bay Area, including UC Berkeley, Stanford, and the City of San Ramon, to name a few. I am also proud to have served as the local Red Cross Aquatics representative from 2017-2022, broadening my network and forging invaluable connections with aquatics professionals across the nation.

My journey with BAPPOA started in 2008, and I previously served as Treasurer for over two years. I firmly believe that our active participation in BAPPOA and other aquatics networking associations is crucial to our industry's overall success. The relationships we build and the connections we make serve us well into the future. I am eager to continue forging new connections and contributing to our community's growth whenever the opportunity arises.

When I'm not immersed in the world of aquatics, you can find me on two wheels, dirt bikes, motorcycles, and scooters, accompanied by my husband, John. My two blue nose pits, Diesel and Ariel, also keep me on my toes with their playful antics.

I look forward to serving as your 2024 VP, and 2025 President!


Secretary & Treasurer - Mike Mastroni

Hayward Area Recreation and Park District


Responsible for: Membership, Registration Payment, Annual Budget


Affiliations, Training, Staff Development and Legislative Liaison - Sunshine Reece 

City of Berkeley or

Responsible for: Updates from CPRS, Red Cross, and other affiliations as well as trainings and classes.

My name is Sunshine Reece, and I am the Assistant Aquatics Coordinator for the City of Berkeley and Pool Manager for the City of San Ramon. With great enthusiasm, I step into the role of Chief Training Officer for BAPPOA.

My journey in aquatics spans over seven years, encompassing experiences in both the public and private sectors. Beginning as a Junior Lifeguard, I progressed through the ranks to the role of Pool Manager. Throughout this adventure, I found belonging on the pool deck and empowerment as an advocate for water safety. I am currently certified as a Lifeguard, LGI/LGIT, WSI/WSIT, and CPO.

Off the pool deck, you’ll find me spending time with my two cats, Noche and Gracie, as well as my dog, Sam. I also enjoy outdoor activities, including archery and roller skating, although not simultaneously, of course.

As your Chief Training Officer, I am excited to bring my experience and enthusiasm for training to the forefront. I am eager to collaborate with our membership to elevate our training programs, foster professional development opportunities, and strengthen the bonds within our aquatic community.


Web Master - Russell Meglio

City of Pleasanton

Responsible for: BAPPOA website updates, social media, and e-mail blasts.

My name is Russell Meglio, and I am the Aquatics Coordinator for the City of Pleasanton. I started my aquatics career as a lifeguard 13 years ago and quickly fell in love with the job. I got my WSI certification a year after that, and since then have been all in on aquatics. I have moved up from being a lifeguard to lifeguard/swim instructor, then to pool manager before transitioning into the full-time position I currently hold with the City of Pleasanton. I hold a variety of certifications (something we all know too well). I hold the following certifications: Lifeguard (Bundle 5), WSI, WSIT, LGI, LGIT, First Aid Instructor, First Aid Instructor Trainer, and CPO . I studied at San Francisco State University and graduated with a Bachelor's of Science in Recreation, Parks and Tourism Administration. 

When I am not at work, I like to spend time with my dog, Leila, whether it's a hike or just cuddling up and cheering on the Sharks. You can also find me at a local hockey rink doing my best impressions of a competent skater..

I hope to learn more about BAPPOA through serving on the board, and will strive to provide the information you need to help keep this organization successful and an asset to the Bay Area.

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Scholarships and Awards - Alyssa Smith

Livermore Area Recreation and Park District

Responsible for: Scholarship Information & Applications, Award Nominees, Awards Banquet

Hello BAPPOA members! My name is Alyssa Smith, and I am the Aquatics Coordinator for the Livermore Area Recreation and Park District. I began working in aquatics five years ago with the City of Brentwood. I started my aquatics career by teaching swim lessons as a Water Safety Instructor. In this position, I gained a love for the aquatics field and discovered my passion for delivering quality swim lessons and water safety education to the community. Along the way, I have earned my Lifeguarding Instructor certification, Aquatics Facility Operator certification, and most recently, my Water Safety Instructor Trainer certification. I graduated from CSU East Bay in December 2021 with a bachelor’s degree in Human Development with a concentration in Early Childhood Development. I decided to continue my education and am currently in a master’s program at CSU East Bay for Hospitality, Recreation, and Tourism. 

I look forward to serving on the BAPPOA board and am excited to meet many more aquatics professionals and friends along the way!


Sponsorships and “Friends of BAPPOA” Liaison & Surveys - Tiffany Haley

City of Novato

Responsible for: Liason with Non-Profit Organizations and for Profit Organizations, Handles Survey Questions


Hello BAPPOA members!! My name is Tiffany Haley, and I am a Recreation Supervisor for the City of Novato. I have been around a pool deck my entire life; I started swimming competitively at the young age of 4.


I began working in aquatics in 2008 as a cashier and swim instructor with the City of San Rafael. I had moved up from being a lifeguard, head guard, pool manager before accepting a full-time position as a Program Coordinator. In December 2023, I was fortunate to receive a promotional opportunity with Novato and become a Recreation Supervisor. I have the following certifications: Lifeguarding, Lifeguard Instructor, Lifeguard Instructor Trainer, Water Safety Instructor. I currently serve on the CPRS District 1 board, and I look forward to serving on the BAPPOA this next year and can’t wait to meet more aquatic professions.


When I’m not working, you can find me spending time with family and friends,  watching sports with my fiancé, and trying new restaurants.

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