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Antoine Ponton

Residential & Commercial Interior Designer/Decorator
Sea Gull

Years as a Staff Member/Positions held: Senior Cabin Counselor, Summer 2005-Cabin 27 & Summer 2006-Cabin 68…both on Sailing Staff as Hobie Fleet Captain & Lighting Trainer

Can you provide a brief overview of your job responsibilities? 

I am now a residential & commercial Interior Designer/Decorator, as Principal and Founder of my own firm, AP Designs. Although I started out in this biz with mainly small residential-based clients, during the pandemic and also somewhat due to my Camp contacts/networks, my work has evolved into larger commercial-sized projects, including two restaurant/bar concepts, a hair salon and even a private tennis and pool club. I am now working on my first coastal NC project, the latest Lonerider Hideout Distillery & Restaurant location on Oak Island. 

Do you have any career advice for members of our Camp community? 

I certainly do, they are the very words I live by every day… "Never, ever compare yourself to anyone else!" In this life, you never really know how someone else arrived to where they are at any given point. Their specific path, background and circumstances are unique to them. How could you possibly apply your own personal journeys' ups and downs and expect to arrive at the same level as anyone else? Do your best, plan ahead-but always make sure to adjust your sails to the wind at hand-and enjoy the ride! 

What advice would you give your younger self? 

Never stop evolving & never give up, cause if you do…you might as well stay in bed, cause what the heck else is there to do in life! It has been over fifteen years since my last summer at Camp and it took me ten years of trying my hand at the mortgage business, restaurant/bar marketing, residential real estate, and commercial insurance to then spend the last five years building and refining my true passion and love in life of creating beautiful spaces and places for clients. My point being, almost everything I’ve worked for/the success I am having today can be traced, one way or another, back to Camp…and for me and my journey, that has taken every bit of fifteen years!

Favorite Camp meal? Grilled Cheese sandwiches & Tomato Soup…a true classic, especially on a wet & rainy day!

What three words best describe you? LOUD in more ways than one-really being the opposite of subtle, MAGNANIMOUS to all & of course, unceasingly CREATIVE

What profession other than you own would you like to try? Call me crazy, but I always thought it would be a riot to try my hand at being a QVC Anchor/sales person…the way those people go on and on about the most mundane items?!?!

What is a goal on which you are working? I have recently accepted the honor of being a part of the first YMCA of the Triangles' Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Executive Board Committee. It is a very humbling role that is providing me with an opportunity to challenge the conservative, Catholic upbringings I was raised with down in Southwest Louisiana and amend them to what is fair & righteous for myself and my community.  My goal is to retool my thinking and to help others to do the same, to acquire the knowledge and empathy to combat the many social and economic issues confronting our local Y communities.