Educational Bio Video
Welcome to Laurel Hill Primary School. I love serving as the principal of our wonderful school and if we have not yet met, I look forward to meeting you and your children. I became an educator in 1999 and have had the privilege of leading our school since we opened in January, 2006.
Like many of our students and families I am not originally from South Carolina. I grew up in New York on the east end of Long Island; East Quogue to be exact. I decided to apply to colleges that were far from N.Y. and I ended up attending Clemson University where I earned my degree in architecture. Moving to South Carolina was a big adjustment but within the first few months I knew that I would remain in the South. After graduating I spent four years working with an architectural firm in Charleston designing schools and other public buildings around our state.
During those years I had many opportunities to work with children (coaching inner-city basketball, mentoring high school students, speaking at career days and serving with our church’s middle school youth group). Feeling called to a career in education, I left the architectural field to begin teaching in 1999. The State allowed me to teach Visual Art based on my experience in architecture and my Visual Art coursework completed at Clemson. My first year teaching was spent in Berkeley County. I had the opportunity to transfer to Charleston and Pinckney Elementary the following year where I worked as Pinckney’s art teacher. During that time I was named Pinckney's Teacher of the Year and an Honor Roll Teacher for Charleston County School District. I was a member of the CCSD Teacher Forum and also served as the Master Art Teacher for the SC PACE Program. My love of teaching led to the creation of the Antonelli Art Camp, a visual arts summer camp my wife and I teach for students.
While teaching Art, I earned my M.Ed in Elementary Administration from The Citadel and then became an Assistant Principal at Pinckney Elementary. In 2005 I was named Principal of Laurel Hill Primary and offered the opportunity to open our brand new school. In 2008 I was named a '40 under 40' recipient by the Charleston Regional Business Journal and also received the Principal Advocacy Award by the CCSD Reading Recovery Program. In 2012 I received the Star Principal Award from CCSD. Since its opening, Laurel Hill Primary School has received a number of prominent awards including; NAEYC Accreditation, the South Carolina Red Carpet Award, South Carolina SIC Riley Award Finalist, and the South Carolina Literacy Spot Award.
While serving as principal has been an honor, experiencing our school as a Laurel Hill parent and watching my children thrive here has been equally amazing. Outside of school I spend as much time as possible with my wife and children. My interests include playing basketball, coaching my son’s teams, attending and serving at church, going to the beach, speaking with former students in the community, traveling, cheering for Clemson and creating things like furniture and Halloween costumes with my wife and kids.
My hope is that your experience at Laurel Hill is nothing short of excellent. Please feel free to contact me with questions about our school.