AQUATIC LIFE DESIGNS began with one objective in mind: to CREATE and MAINTAIN stunning aquatic masterpieces that are as much about FUNCTION as they are DESIGN. The brainchild of life-long, professional aquatic enthusiasts, Aquatic Life Designs is unlike any other company in the Industry. With experience in the hobby, the pet industry and large public institutions; our level of QUALITY, EXPERTISE and CUSTOMER SERVICE is unsurpassed.
Steven Keuper was born and raised in La Crosse, WI and attended the University of Wisconsin - La Crosse for Biology. Steve took his first job at a pet store and SCUBA center in 1994 and then founded and ran a pond and aquarium services company from 1998 until relocating to Atlanta in 2007. Steve worked his way up to Lead Operator and eventually Manager of Life Support Systems at Georgia Aquarium. Steve has played primary roles in the design, commissioning and operations of many of the aquarium's exhibits and major expansions, as well as leading a team of technicians in the care and operations of a $250M LSS facility. Steve's specialties include system controls and automation, exhibit design, commissioning and project management. Steve has also been a part of the Georgia Aquarium's Dive Operations department, performing underwater exhibit and equipment maintenance. Steve left Georgia Aquarium in 2022 to focus his attention on Aquatic Life Designs.
Steve has been a presenting speaker for multiple aquarium industry and hobbyist conventions, such as AALSO (Aquatic Animal Life Support System Operators) IAAAM (International Association of Aquatic Animal Medicine) and the Atlanta Reef Club. Steve has also led the design and set-up of a number of specialty aquarium stores in both Wisconsin and Georgia, as well as various facilities around the world, including on-site oversight of construction of a Red Sea research facility in Saudi Arabia and commissioning of the current world's largest aquarium in China.
Barrett Rhoades is a Georgia native and has been keeping reef aquariums since 2001. Barrett graduated from the University of Georgia in 2005 with a degree in Animal Science. During college he worked at Athens Aquarium, managing their Saltwater Livestock and selection, as well as doing aquarium maintenance. He has installed and designed dozens of aquariums. Barrett has been working as a Life Support Operator with Steve at the Georgia Aquarium, starting in 2010 and specializing in fabrication, piping installation, pumps, and system design,
Barrett is also passionate about the outdoors, and enjoys hiking & backpacking, mountain biking, diving, cliimbing as well as spending time with his wife and german shepherds.
Since 1994, Steve has been an aquarium hobbyist and has filled his fish room with everything from aquatic turtles to planted and reef aquariums. To help pay his way through college and support his aquarium addiction, he worked at two large family owned pet stores, and helped construct a new 23,000 square foot facility toward the end of his tenure. Steve earned a degree in Zoology with a concentration in Marine Biology from Lyman Briggs College at Michigan State University. With a degree in hand, Steve entered the public aquarium field. As a Senior Aquarist at the Florida Aquarium he managed a variety of exhibits from a few gallons to 500,000 gallons. Currently, Steve is a Senior Aquarist at the Georgia Aquarium, where he is the primary aquarist of the fourth largest live reef exhibit in the world.
Amy has worked in the public aquarium industry for over 10 years, Beginning her career at the Mystic Aquarium in Connecticut before moving to Atlanta in 2006. Amy is now a Senior Biologist in the Tropical Diver Gallery at the Georgia Aquarium and specializes in Seahorses, Jellies, Cuttlefish, and rasing live foods in the aquaculture room. Amy graduated from Roger Williams University in 2002 with degrees in Marine Biology and Creative Writing. When not playing in the water, Amy shreds it up as the front woman of her Joan Jett tribute band, The Cherry Bomb. She spends her free time with her wonderful husband, sweet baby girl, and two lovable dogs.
Jacob is from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and earned his Biology degree from The Ohio State University. He was the youngest ever volunteer diver at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, where he also interned. Jacob took his passion for diving to the Caribbean where he worked as an aquarist at Coral World Ocean Park in sunny St. Thomas, Virgin Islands. While living the island life he conducted research on the growth and sustainability of several important fisheries. He is experienced in fish collection as well as animal tagging.
Currently Jacob is a biologist II at the Georgia Aquarium in the Acquisitions and Quarantine department. He provides husbandry to an ever-changing group of freshwater, marine , and terrestrial animals before they make their way to their exhibits. He has also had the opportunity to work with dozens of elasmobranch species including whale sharks, manta rays, and lemon sharks.