Owensboro native Eric Thomas created Aquatic Resource Center in 2016 as a residential provider of koi ponds and water fixtures. Fast forward to now, and the company is a premiere commercial aquatic systems installer, performing projects in over a dozen states.
Thomas and the team made the jump to commercial in 2019 and haven’t slowed down. They’ve installed tiger pools, stingray touch tanks, penguin exhibits, and much more at many renowned zoos and aquariums.
“We have performed work in over a dozen states ranging from small filtration refurbishments to brand new, multi-million dollar habitats,” Thomas said. “Aquatic Resource Center was built upon real-life, hands-on experience and is backed by our love and passion for the aquatic industry.”
Thomas’s passion for the industry began in middle school when he began selling koi all over the country. He eventually secured some rental equipment and started building ponds and water features, constantly growing from there.
Aquatic Resource Center moved into its current location at 2757 Southtown Boulevard in the airpark last year. His team of six comprises people from various walks of life, each with a positive attitude and unique skills.
“We love the location, and our team members are fantastic,” he said. “Our quality team is what makes these massive projects possible. I want to continue to see our business grow and help Owensboro prosper.”
Outside of installing unique zoo and aquarium exhibits nationwide, the company specializes in custom commercial water features, aquaculture systems, preventative maintenance, and emergency repairs.
Recent projects include the Penguins of Patagonia exhibit at Mesker Park Zoo in Evansville, a North American River Otters exhibit at ZooMontanna, and Stingray Bay at the Oklahoma City Zoo. They’ve also performed installations at the Louisville Zoo, the St. Louis Zoo, and Roosevelt Park in Minot, North Dakota.
Thomas graduated from Western Kentucky University, spending most of his weekends during college at home in Owensboro. And, despite traveling the country for work, he considers Owensboro the perfect place to raise a family and run a business.
“I was definitely a ‘suitcase student’ at Western because I just liked Owensboro better,” he said. “I met my wife in Bowling Green, and we both decided Owensboro was the best place to raise our family. I want to continue bringing money from outside the state into Owensboro and see the city grow and thrive.”
To learn more about Aquatic Resource Center, visit aquaticresourcecenter.com.
The Chamber Member of the Week program is a Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce membership benefit. Founded in 1913, the Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce has worked to provide valuable benefits and services to member businesses and individuals for over a century.
Today, with a membership base of nearly 1,000, the Chamber is a guiding force in community and business development initiatives, serving as the center of business advocacy for the Greater Owensboro region.
To learn more about becoming the Chamber Member of the Week or inquire about Chamber membership, contact Shelly Nichols, Chamber Vice President, at 270-926-1860 or [email protected].