Office with a View

Deborah Conrad with Federal Point Yacht Club

Boat Women 10

There is a continuously growing number of women in the marine and boating industry encompassing everything related to the ocean, ships, and navigation in positions as seafarers, retailers and manufacturers, boat dealers, recreational boaters, executives, and many other roles. Right here in Wilmington, three women are making their own waves in the industry.

  • A Rising Tide: Click here to read about Michele Kurelich
  • Office with a View: Read more about Deborah Conrad below
  • Eye on the Prize: Click here to read more about Kerry Dewberry

DEBORAH CONARD has been the manager of Federal Point Yacht Club in Carolina Beach for the past seven years. She is responsible for managing 110 privately owned boat slips as well as leasing slips to short-term transient boaters. 

Conard also oversees the condition of the docks, prepares hurricane evacuation plans, manages accounts payable and receivable, and even does party planning. Logistics is also a large part of her job, placing 25- to 50-foot boats in the slips according to size, arrival and departure dates, and power requirements. 

Catering to both slip owners and club members, she says, “I provide customer service to a hundred different personalities on a regular basis.” 

She knows most of the members and their dogs by name. Conard, who has a background in sales, learned most of her trade through on-the-job experiences. 

Conard and her husband, who is the dockmaster at the club, own two boats and spend their weekends on the water. 

“We fish, grill out, read, and scuba,” she says. “It’s a great weekend getaway without really leaving home. The scenery is beautiful. The horizon where the water meets the sky never ceases to amaze me.” 

But, it’s the view from her office that can’t be beat. 

“I see all kinds of boats all day. Once, dolphins swam right in front of my office window. Not many jobs where you can say that,” she says. “I always try to stop and appreciate the beauty while it’s happening. I try not to take my view for granted. No cubicles or windowless offices for me ever again!” 

To view more of photographer Madeline Gray’s work, go to

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Categories: Features