'Humbled and honored': Without an election, Mel Ponder is Destin's next mayor

Mel Ponder

Mel Ponder says he believes family-based values are what make Destin a successful community. He is seen here with his sons Preston and Casey, his wife, Mona, and his daughter, Grace.

Special to The Log
Published: Friday, January 3, 2014 at 01:49 PM.

Mel Ponder will be Destin's next mayor.

"I'm extremely humbled and honored for the privilege and the opportunity of being able to serve on another level," Ponder told The Log. "My emotions are all over the board, and I don't know how I'll feel in the morning."

As the deadline to qualify passed Friday at noon, Ponder was the only candidate to throw his name into the hat to become the city's ninth mayor.

Ponder is a mortgage loan officer with Prime Lending. He also operates Business Empowerment, a Destin Christian faith-based business cooperative.

And Ponder is no newcomer to city government, having served on the city council from 2002 to 2006. This is the second consecutive mayoral election where there was only one candidate in the running.

The last contested election took place in 2006, when then Mayor Craig Barker defeated former mayor Ken Beaird.

As the outgoing mayor, Sam Seevers told The Log she is proud to see Ponder take the helm.

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