Life in the U.S. is still new to Alisa Gotay, a native of Puerto Rico who made the move to Texas with her husband and son five years ago. She is even newer to the pool industry, having begun working at Silver Spring Pool and Spa in El Paso, Texas, in summer 2020.
Gotay remembers how nervous she was on her first day as project coordinator for the business. After having spent the first six years of her adult life working in administration, Gotay says she felt more than a little out of her depth during her first few months in the industry. “Everything for me, by that time, was new, as far as pools were concerned,” Gotay recalls.
After only two months on the job, Gotay says her employer, Juancarlos Rodriguez, asked her to serve as his right-hand project manager, noting Gotay’s spark, potential and hunger for knowledge. From that kernel of encouragement, Gotay was inspired to learn everything she could about how to draw plans, supervise construction, program equipment and make sales. However, the following summer, Rodriguez told Gotay he was retiring and selling the company. That’s when Gotay and her husband, Joey Serrano, decided to open 787 Serrano Construction LLC, a pool building and general construction business.
“I started with no connections, no clients, just with the mindset to keep growing in knowledge and experience in this wonderful industry,” Gotay says. “I thank God. My husband is the best partner in life and in work. He supports me at all times. He believes in me and in the empowerment of every woman.” Between moving to the U.S., to entering the pool industry and finally opening their own business, Gotay’s life has been anything but predictable. She says she feels blessed to be “doing what I love with the person that I love.”