Our Company History | Pulliam Pools

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A History of the Oldest Pool Company in America

Pulliam Pools is the continuation of a family construction business founded in 1916 by brothers Theodore Creswell Pulliam and Frank ‘Pop’ Pulliam. In 1916, there was no such thing as a ‘swimming pool contractor’. If you wanted a pool, you would call a ‘cement contractor’. Since Theo had built many waterproof cattle dipping vats, he was asked to build the first swimming pools in Coryell County.

The company evolved from there to three generations of pool builders. In fact, the company is listed as America’s Oldest Pool Builder. That’s why, when premier pool industry magazine, Pool & Spa News, published a series of articles exploring the history of the Texas pool industry in 2005, they contacted Pulliam Pools to provide.


Theodore Pulliam and his brother open a cement business and later built their first concrete swimming pool, the Gatesville Public Pool.

Three generations of Pulliams family would revolutionize the state’s pool industry

Three generations of Pulliams family would revolutionize the state’s pool industry, taking it from the days of wooden test kits to the first use of sprayed concrete and into the 21st century.

D. Barry Pulliam 1948 –

Doren Pulliam (above) buys the first gunite rig in Texas to build pools.

1956 – Pulliam’s Backyard Story

Through innovative advertising and marketing, Pulliam Pools went from a simple storefront (above) to the nation’s 24th largest builder and a Pool & Spa News Top Builder.

Involved in the family business since childhood, company consultant and third-generation owner Barry Pulliam literally learned about pools from the ground up. At age 10, he worked service routes for his father, Doren, and at age 14, he was working the service counter explaining maintenance techniques to customers.

1985 – Barry Pulliam takes over his father’s business

In 1985, Barry took over the in-ground pool construction business from his father. The company quadrupled sales during his first year at the helm.

2004 – Pulliam Pools builds 450 pools

Pulliam Pools builds 450 pools, generating
$14.1 million in new-construction revenue.


Front page of the Fort Worth Business Press
regarding Pulliam’s second Small Business of the Year Award given by the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce.

2009 – Debra Smith and Mike Clark assume leadership and begin planning for new innovations and company strategies

In 2009, new President Debra Smith and Vice President Mike Clark purchased the company from Barry Pulliam. Although it would have been great to have a fourth generation owner, Debra and Mike were an ideal fit. Both have been a critical part of the success of the company, having worked there for 18 years and 24 years respectively, and both hold the company legacy dear to their hearts. A simple stock sale kept the company intact, and provided continuity for employees and customers alike.

Nowadays, a Pulliam pool is a statement of beauty. “A pool isn’t just a vessel of water to swim in,” says Barry Pulliam (above, in 2005). “People’s backyards
are extensions of their homes.”

2022 – Pulliam Pools acquired by Riverbend Sandler Pools

In 2022, Pulliam Pools was acquired by Riverbend Sandler Pools.

2022 – Top 50 Pool Builder 20 years in a row

Pools & Spa News – Pulliam Pools 20 Years Top 50 Builder Article

2022 – Over 30,000 projects completed

2023 – Andrew Fluty promoted to General Manager

Andrew started as a laborer at Pulliam Pools right after college and worked his way up through each department, gaining expertise in every aspect of the company. He excelled in sales and design and was appointed Sales Manager in 2015. He coached and mentored the design team and was later promoted to Operations Manager in 2020. After Pulliam was acquired by Riverbend Sandler Pools, Andrew became General Manager in 2022. Passionate about the pool industry, he looks forward to growing the company’s footprint while preserving its culture and providing unmatched quality and service to clients. In his free time, Andrew enjoys golfing, gardening, and spending time with his family.

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