Directory

High School Directory

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Debra Barkett

Bible | Upper Campus

I have been teaching at GRACE for over 10 years, and I love serving in this ministry. I lived in Clayton for 23 years, but made a more recent move to Holly Springs. I was born and raised in Miami, Florida, and have lived in Springfield, Missouri; St. Louis, Missouri; attended college in Indiana (near Chicago) where I worked with Chicago gang kids for eight years; and lived in the north Florida and south Georgia area doing youth ministry work.

I have over twenty years of teaching experience, in addition to home-schooling and working in church and youth ministries for many years. My Bachelor's Degree in Secondary Education came from Hyles-Anderson College in Indiana, with minors in business, home economics, psychology, and Bible. I also obtained a Master's Degree in Education and English and have earned my lifetime professional accreditation certificate with ACSI.

I have two adult sons, Nathan, who is an artist and mechanic, and Ben, who is a talented salesman and works in Development for my non-profit organization, Hope Connection International, which I founded several years ago. Hope Connection empowers survivors and families of abuse and addiction by providing resources and offering free support groups, classes, and sponsorships with tailored solutions, along with supportive, long-term housing. My church home is Hope Community Church, where I have been active for over 10 years. My other companions are two BIG Rhodesian Ridgeback dogs: Khodjo, who weighs around 110 pounds and Cody, who weighs about 75 pounds. My passion is to impact our GRACE students to serve God and find their purpose through leading them by example in this endeavor. I am honored to be part of the GRACE family.

Email: DBarkett@GRACEChristian.net

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Rion Bell

Bible & History | Upper Campus

My name is Rion Bell and I am so thankful to be part of the GRACE Christian School family for my fifth year. I grew up on the North Carolina Outer Banks and attended Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest for my undergraduate and graduate degrees. I received my Bachelors in Biblical Studies with an emphasis on Philosophy and History, as well as my Master of Divinity in Christian Apologetics. My wife Kristen and I also met while we were attending college.

I love discussing and defending the truth of God's Word as well as seeing God work in the hearts of young people. I taught several classes with Southeastern Seminary on Apologetics and Philosophy. I have also been blessed to work with teens and youth for the last 14 years. I recently served for several years as Youth Pastor at Treasuring Christ Church in downtown Raleigh.

Email: RBell@GRACEChristian.net

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Mark Bianchi

Computer Science | Upper Campus

Hello. My name is Mark Bianchi and this will be my third year at GRACE. I am a member of the IT team providing support and teaching Computer Science courses. 

I have been married to my wife Sissy for 26 years. We have two boys, Chris and Alex. Chris will be a senior at ECU in Greenville, N.C. this Fall. Alex attends UNC at Chapel Hill, N.C. and will be a senior this Fall.

I was born in Schenectady, New York, and after high school I attended Hudson Valley Community College, in Troy, New York. I completed my Associate’s degree in Electrical Technology and was offered a position at IBM Poughkeepsie, New York, as a test technician. A few years later I attended Marist College in Poughkeepsie where I completed my Bachelor's degree in Computer Science.

I transferred to IBM East Fishkill, New York, in 1996. At East Fishkill I was a software engineer in IBM’s semi-conductor fabrication plant. In 2004 I transferred to IBM RTP as a test automation team lead. The team I was responsible for handled the test automation for IBM’s System X servers. IBM sold System X to Lenovo and in January 2015 I accepted a voluntary package to leave Lenovo.  

Attending Colonial Baptist Church in Cary, N.C. has been a pleasure for our family. I was involved with the youth ministries at Colonial throughout the years my boys grew up and graduated. I am excited to work along side the staff here at GRACE. My goal is to share all that I have gained from working in the computer industry to the students at GRACE.

1 Samuel 12:24 NIV But be sure to fear the LORD and serve him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things he has done for you.

Email: MBianchi@GRACEChristian.net

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Patrick Bizieff

History | Upper Campus

My name is Patrick Bizieff and I am excited to return to GRACE Christian School this year to teach history. In the classroom, we will discuss how we as Christians should interpret the events around us from a biblical perspective.

I graduated from North Carolina State University with a degree in history. Currently, I am continuing my education at NCSU by working on my masters in history where I am focusing on the history of American foreign policy in Iran.

This year at GRACE, I am looking forward to discussing modern political and historical events with your student and working with the varsity soccer team. Go Eagles!

Email: PBizieff@GRACEChristian.net

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Jenny Bomgardner

Science | Upper Campus

My name is Jenny Bomgardner and I teach chemistry, AP Chemistry and AP Physics at GRACE. I grew up in Raleigh, graduating from Leesville Road High School in 2002 and NCSU in 2006 with a B.S. in Physics and a minor in Japanese. I worked for Wachovia Mortgage Corporation for two years before God called me to teaching here at GRACE. Since then, I have graduated from Liberty with a Master of Arts in Teaching. I have also acquired standard teaching licenses for secondary math and science from the states of North Carolina and Virginia, as well as from ACSI.

I live in north Raleigh with my husband Matt, our dog Snickers and our guinea pig Maggie. Our first baby arrived in August 2018! Teaching inquiry-based science is my passion and I look forward to teaching at GRACE for many years to come!

Email: JBomgardner@GRACEChristian.net

To learn more about Jenny, read her March 20, 2018 Staff Spotlight.

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Jonah Bookman

History & Bible | Upper Campus

My name is Jonah Bookman, and I am so excited to return to GRACE Christian School this year. I grew up in Southern California, where I graduated from The Master’s College in 2009. I love teaching U.S. history, and I relish the chance to reflect Christ’s love in the classroom while instilling in young people a love for learning and a desire to seek the truth.

Email: JBookman@GRACEChristian.net

To learn more about Jonah, read his April 24, 0218 Staff Spotlight.

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William Brewer

Math | 7th-12th Campus

My name is William Brewer and I am excited to be joining GRACE Christian School full time and continuing to teach math as well as returning as the Varsity Baseball head coach. I am looking forward to another fruitful year full of new opportunities.

I grew up in Raleigh and graduated from Furman University with B.S. in Biology in 2013. While at Furman I was involved with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes as the High School Outreach leader and played on the baseball and club ultimate frisbee teams. Go Paladins!! I have been following God’s call to serve in Christian camping at Camp Willow Run in Littleton, NC for the last four years where I served as a boy’s counselor for a year, the high ropes director and worship leader for a year, and then served on full time staff for the past 2 years. My time spent serving with this ministry instilled in me the words of the apostle John from 3 John 4 where he says, “I have no greater joy than to know that my children are walking in the truth.”

I have a dog named Koda and we enjoy spending time outdoors, all sports (specifically baseball), frisbee, fishing, good music, drinking coffee, and any sort of activity from Spikeball to swing dancing! I attend the Summit Church and have enjoyed serving with the high school student’s ministry there. I am very thankful to have the opportunity to continue impacting the lives of youth in the classroom and on the athletic fields at GRACE. I am excited to be a part of the GRACE community and for what the upcoming year has in store for us all.

Email: WBrewer@GRACEChristian.net

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Nathan Dewey

Bible & History | Upper Campus

My name is Nathan Dewey and I am excited to have been at GRACE since 2013. I was born and raised in the Finger Lakes area of western New York state before heading to Philadelphia where I went to college at Cairn University. There I received a B.S. in Biblical Studies and a B.S. in Secondary Education, and discovered a passion for teaching.

I ended up returning to my high school alma mater for the next ten years and while back in New York I met and fell in love with my wife, Emily. We have been married since 2009 and been blessed with four wonderful children.

In early 2013, we recognized several signals that God might be wanting us to consider a change. Following His lead led us to this amazing opportunity at GRACE where I have been ever since.

I get pretty excited about teaching Bible and history, analyzing culture, watching Syracuse play ACC basketball, spending time with my five favorite people, and influencing teenagers to make a difference in their world for Christ. I'm blessed to have the opportunity for all those things here at GRACE.

Email: NDewey@GRACEChristian.net

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Julianne Donoghue

Math | Upper Campus

My name is Julianne Donoghue and I am very excited to be returning to GRACE for my second year. I grew up in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina and then attended North Carolina State University. Go Pack! After graduating, I joined Teach For America and began teaching math at a high school in Charlotte, NC. I fell in love with teaching math and decided to stay in the classroom after my commitment with Teach For America ended.

In my free time, I enjoy spending time with family and friends and traveling to the beach on the weekends. I also enjoy attending a variety of NC State sporting events. Teaching at GRACE is such a blessing. I pray this year that students would be able to grow deeper in their love of the Lord and in their love of others around them.

Luke 10:27 "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind; and, Love your neighbor as yourself."

Email: JDonoghue@GRACEChristian.net

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Melanie Dunning

Science & STEM | Upper Campus

My name is Melanie Dunning and I grew up in Cabarrus County, North Carolina. I graduated from N.C. State University in 1997, with degrees in Chemistry and Science Education. I have taught Chemistry, Biology, Earth Science and Physics in Granville and Wake Counties. After  taking several years off from teaching when I had children, I worked as a Teacher Assistant at Briarcliff Elementary where my children attended. For the past 2 years, I have been teaching STEM there, and last year I added elementary and middle grades to my secondary teaching certificate.

I enjoy spending time with my husband and our 2 boys. We love to travel and explore new places. One of my passions is seeing students work together to explore and understand science. I love incorporating technology and project based learning into the classroom. I am excited that God has given me the opportunity to teach Chemistry and STEM this year and am looking forward to my new experiences at GRACE.

email: MDunning@GRACEChristian.net

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Hannah Eichhorst

Science | Upper Campus

My journey to teaching started when I was a senior at GRACE. During a missions trip to Costa Rica with Mr. Whelpley & Mrs. Gill, I decided that I wanted to spend my career with kids. After graduating high school, I attended the University of North Carolina at Wilmington where I rekindled my love of nature and earned a bachelor's degree in geology. Teaching Earth Science gives me the opportunity love your students and inspire them to go outside and explore. Coming back to GRACE feels like coming home, and I am honored to be part of this community.

My goal is to teach your students to see themselves as capable scientists. More importantly, I pray that by studying the Lord's creation we may know Him better, as it says in Psalms 111:2 “Great are the works of the Lord, they are studied by all who delight in him."

In my free time you can find me laughing with my family and eating their food, fumbling through do-it-yourself projects with my husband in our house, or hiking/backpacking with my very chubby beagle, Bean.

 

Email: HEichhorst@GRACEChristian.net

Learn more about Hannah by reading the October 2, 2017 Staff Spotlight

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Daniel Fairchild

Bible | Upper Campus

My name is Daniel Fairchild and I am so thankful to be returning for my fourth year at GRACE Christian School. I was a military brat growing up, but I call North Carolina home. I went to Palm Beach Atlantic University, where I received my Bachelor's Degree with a major in communication studies and a minor in ministry leadership studies. It was there that I felt a call on my life to help impact the youth for the Kingdom of God. I attended Campbell University Divinity School where I earned my Master of Divinity with an emphasis in pastoral care and Christian education.

I met my wife, Meghan, during the last year of my seminary and we were married not long after I graduated. We have a 3-year-old girl named Nellie and a golden doodle puppy named Mozzie (named after our favorite tv show). My wife and I are so excited to be puppy parents! We attend The Point Church of Apex where I am the student director. When I am not teaching and ministering to youth, I am a Chaplain in the United States Air Force Reserves. 

Email: DFairchild@GRACEChristian.net

Learn more about Daniel in the November 7, 2017 Staff Spotlight

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Audrey Fogle

Strings Elective | 9th-12th

My name is Audrey Fogle. I have been playing the violin for 20 years and have performed in orchestras, symphonies and philharmonics, for just as long. I teach at the Cary School of Music and have taught group and private lessons. I graduated from East Carolina University and took graduate level classes in Suzuki Pedagogy. I also love worship music and have performed with worship teams as well. I am also a GRACE Christian School alumni and look forward to teaching and working with your students.

Email: AFogle@GRACEChristian.net

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Katie Fowler

Learning Specialist | Upper Campus

I am so excited to be at GRACE for the 2018-2019 school year. I am from Durham, North Carolina and attended the University of North Carolina at Wilmington where I obtained a Bachelors Degree in Special Education with a minor in Psychology, graduating with honors. I studied both adapted and general curriculum for Special Education and am certified in both areas. I graduated with my Masters in Educational Psychology, from Ball State University in December of 2017. 

I have worked with children with disabilities of all ages and all diagnoses ranging mild to severe and profound. Special education is near and dear to my heart, both professionally and personally, as I have a family member with autism. I have been active in the special education community advocating for those with disabilities for many years volunteering and participating in organizations such as The Special Olympics of North Carolina and The Autism Society of North Carolina.

I live in Raleigh with my sweet golden retriever, Whaler. I call the Summit Church at Blue Ridge home. In my free time, I love to go to the beach, or be around any body of water! I am so excited for this year and cannot wait to see God’s ministry and His plan unfold. I am eager to share my faith and love with my student’s and help guide them to be successful servant leaders for Christ!

 

Email: KFowler@GRACEChristian.net

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Kristin Foxworth-O’Brien

English | Upper Campus

A military brat and a pastor's kid, I grew up moving around and living in many different places. Most recently I am from southwest Georgia. I attended the University of Georgia, where I earned my bachelor's degree and teaching certification in English education and an ESOL endorsement. After college, I went to Japan with the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Programme. There I co-taught English as a second language to over 700 students at two different junior high schools in the city of Koriyama, Fukushima Prefecture for two years. While in Japan I had the opportunity to immerse myself in Japanese culture and experience a new way of life, as well as minister to people affected by the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and subsequent tsunami and nuclear disaster. It was also in Japan that I met my husband, Daniel. After leaving Japan, I moved home to Americus, Georgia, where I taught American literature at the local public high school for two years before finally marrying my husband and moving to North Carolina to start a new adventure.

I currently live in Cary with my husband, Daniel and our cat, Canyon. We attend Fairview Baptist Church, where we help lead a life group for college and international students. In my spare time I enjoy crafting, singing, cooking, reading, and travel. I love teaching English at GRACE, and am so grateful for the privilege of working with the students here. It is my sincere hope that every student who walks into my classroom grows spiritually and gains the tools to enjoy their own adventure.

Email: KFoxworth-OBrien@GRACEChristian.net

To learn more about Kristin, read her May 8, 0218 Staff Spotlight.

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Jaime Hartley

Drama & Dance | Both Campuses

My name is Jaime Hartley, and I love being a part of the GRACE Christian School family. I hold my MA in Dance from American University and my BA in Theater and Dance from Cedar Crest College. I am a former student of the Laban Conservatory in London, England, where I studied European Dance Theatre. I was a recipient of the CWKelly award for Movements Studies. Following a blessed performance and teaching career in London and Washington, D.C., God put me in a wonderful church where I met my husband Terry. In 2013, along with our son Liam, we moved to my husband's home state of North Carolina. In my free time I enjoy being with my family at the lake and the various parks through out the area.

I am excited to share my love for Christ and the performing arts with the students at GRACE.

Email: JHartley@GRACEChristian.net

To learn more about Jaime, read the January 16, 2018 Staff Spotlight.

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Beth Hawks

Science | Upper Campus

What do you need to know about me? I am a Raleigh native who attended Friendship Christian and Sanderson High School. The Lord led me to ORU in Tulsa, OK to earn my BS in Secondary Science Education (Physics emphasis). For three years I taught physical science to freshman in the great metropolis of Jenks America, Oklahoma (Yes, that's the name of the town). I loved my work there, but I missed my family. My parents live in Raleigh. My brother and sister and law were raising my niece and nephews in Wake Forest, and I didn't want them growing up without me.

I moved to Raleigh and worked for one year at my alma mater, Sanderson High School. During my time there, God made it clear that He wanted me to teach in a place where I could address the hearts of my students, not just their minds or behavior. While interviewing with Teresa Allsbrook and Kathie Thompson, I knew I was home. While at GRACE, I have taught 8th Grade Physical Science, Chemistry, Physics, 7th Grade Health, Freshman Health, Algebra IB, Photography, and Yearbook (not all in one day). Yearbook is a challenge that I love and look forward to each year. Look around any time you are attending a GRACE event. I'm the crazy woman with the camera. It is more work than I ever knew was possible, but I adore it.

What do you really need to know about me? I love science. I love your kids. I love watching your kids discover science. I am so grateful to be a teacher here with this family of believers. I recently heard someone say that GRACE is like a second church family for them. I couldn't agree more. Thank you for entrusting your children to us. Please know how seriously we take that charge.

Email: BHawks@GRACEChristian.net

Learn more about Beth in the December 12, 2017 Staff Spotlight

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Donna Howard

English | Upper Campus

I came to GRACE as a parent seeking purposeful education for my children. Now in my fourteenth year, I teach AP English Literature and AP English Language and serve as Head of the English Department. While teaching allows for imparting knowledge, building skills, and continual learning, I love the process in Christian education as we educate the whole child both intellectually and spiritually. My goal is to guide students to understand the privilege, value, and responsibility in learning while considering the biblical implications of knowledge. 

When not in my classroom, I love being with my husband and our adult children enjoying outdoor activities, traveling, reading, gardening, and visiting with friends. My academic and educational training came from Peace College and North Carolina State University; my practical training came from parenting our son and daughters.

The greatest hope for all of my students, past, present, and future, is that we meet one day around the throne of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Email: DHoward@GRACEChristian.net

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Ben Inman

Latin | Upper Campus

Dr. Inman studied Classics at UNC-CH and theology at Westminster Theological Seminary. He is an ordained minister with the Presbyterian Church in America and previously served as campus minister with Reformed University Fellowship at NCSU and UNC-CH. He and Sara, his wife of 29 years, have 4 children.

Email: BInman@GRACEChristian.net

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Laura Jacobs

English | Upper Campus

Hi! I am Laura Jacobs, and I am thrilled to be a part of the GRACE family. After spending twenty years in corporate America, I decided to pursue my passion and began teaching. I cannot imagine doing anything else. Middle school and high school students are my heart, and I love teaching and learning with them. I look forward to getting to know all of my students and their families.

I received a B.A. in English/creative writing from UNC-Wilmington, and I received my teaching certification from Western Carolina University. I am certified to teach English/Language Arts and English as a Second Language.

I am married and have two boys who are also at GRACE. When I am not teaching, I enjoy spending time with my family. We can often be found playing board games, riding bikes, or relaxing. I also enjoy exercising, reading, and writing in my free time. My hope is that my students will cultivate a love for reading and writing as we explore the various themes and genres throughout the year.

Email: LJacobs@GRACEChristian.net

Learn more about Laura by reading the August 29, 2017 Staff Spotlight

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James Jenkins

College Counselor, Dean of Students | 7th-12th

James Jenkins is entering his 5th year of serving at GRACE and has 14 years of experience in Christian Education.  Mr. Jenkins will continue his role assisting Mrs. Lynn Hawkes in GRACE's College Counseling department and teaching Junior Seminar this year. Furthermore, he will also work alongside Mrs. Pascale Fitts serving as Dean of Students. 

Mr. Jenkins is from Savannah, Georgia where he attended A.E Beach High School. He then attended the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in History. While in college, he was a four-year starter on the football team and served as a team captain his senior year. Mr. Jenkins began his teaching career at Word of God Christian Academy in Raleigh, NC and within 3 years of service was promoted to Assistant Principal. 

Mr. Jenkins also coached Varsity boy's soccer, JV boys’ basketball, and started the school’s first football program, while at Word of God. As the varsity football coach, he was chosen as a Carolina Panther “Coach of the Week” and his team made it to the NCISAA 8 man state championship game in its first year of competition. In his Administrative role, Mr. Jenkins lead Word of God's College Counseling department and all athletic recruiting services.  He served as the school's K-12th grade Principal prior to coming to GRACE in 2013.
James spends majority of his time away from school with his wife Dominique and two beautiful “princesses” Jacqueline LeeAnn (9) and Avery Marie (7). The Jenkins family loves being a part of the GRACE school community and are excited to see what this school year has to offer.

Email: JJenkins@GRACEChristian.net

 

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Ellen Kaehler

Chorus | Both

Hello. My name is Ellen Kaehler and I am excited to be returning to GRACE for my twenty-first year. I am the Choral Music Director for Elementary Chorus, Middle School Vocal Ensemble and High School Vocal Ensemble. I am also the general music teacher for grades three through five.

I received my Bachelor of Music and Master of Arts in music from Appalachian State University where I also taught piano and keyboard theory at Cannon Music Camp.

Prior to coming to GRACE, I was a choral director at the high school level in Wake County. I am the director of the youth choir and substitute director for the chancel choir at Edenton Street United Methodist Church in Raleigh. My husband, Larry, and I have two children. Brittany is beginning her third year as a choral director at the middle and high school level, and Brad is a college student. We live in Knightdale with our much-loved Cairn Terrier, Angie.

Email: EKaehler@GRACEChristian.net

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DeShannon Morris

P.E. | Upper Campus

This will be my fourth year as a member of GRACE Christian School, and I couldn't be more excited about the opportunity to serve in a loving community such as this!  I teach Physical Education and Cross Training, and I am the Varsity Boys Basketball Coach.  I grew up in Raleigh and attended college at Shaw University, where I received a degree in Religion and Philosophy.  I am passionate about building relationships and seeing people's lives transformed through the power of love. 

I have spent the past 20 years coaching and mentoring young men in and around the Triangle through parks and recreation leagues, AAU teams, various camps, and other school-affiliated programs.  I love to see the lives of young people impacted for the Kingdom of God through sports and other extra-curricular activities. 

I am happily married, and my wife and I are the proud parents of three children.  My favorite Bible verse is Ephesians 3:20 - "Now unto Him that is able to do exceedingly and abundantly above all that we could ask or think according to the power that works in us."  I love this verse, because I think it perfectly summarizes the amazing power of the Almighty God that we serve.  Anyone who knows me well knows that my motto is "Don't worry about nothin'!"  These words to live by are biblically based (Philippians 4:6), and I hope that they encourage and inspire all those who have heard them! 

Email: DMorris@GRACEChristian.net

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Emily Myers

Spanish | Upper Campus

¡Hola!  My name is Emily Myers, and this will be my second year teaching Spanish at GRACE.  I am excited to return to this wonderful community where I have the blessing of sharing both my passion for the Spanish language and my faith with my students.  

My love for the Spanish language began in high school.  I had a Spanish teacher who inspired me with the way she made the language come alive.  I decided that I wanted to become a Spanish teacher so that I, too, could share this beautiful language with students of my own. I attended Grove City College where I graduated with a degree in Spanish Education. Over the years, I have spent time traveling, working, and studying abroad in Guatemala, Uruguay, Spain, and Argentina. 

In my free time, I enjoy college football (Go Dawgs!), hiking, horseback riding, salsa dancing, and spending time with friends and family. 

¡Este va a ser un año buenísimo!

Email: EMyers@GRACEChristian.net

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Daniel O’Brien

Tech Integration Specialist | Upper Campus

Originally a native of Chardon, Ohio, I attended Ashland University for my undergraduate degree in English Education for grades 7-12, and I obtained my Masters in Library and Information Studies from UNC Greensboro. I live in Cary with my wife, Kristin, and attend Fairview Baptist Church. Before coming to GRACE, I served as an English instructor and missionary with the Wakakusa English Program in Tamura City, Japan. While living in Fukushima prefecture, I had the opportunity to experience another culture and way of life, as well as provide assistance and aid to people displaced from the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake.

In addition to being the media specialist for GRACE, I am working closely with Mr. Bianchi to develop and run computer science classes relating to the Maclellan Grant we received in January 2018. I am thrilled to be returning to GRACE for another year, and am excited to make GRACE's Media Center a hub of learning, inquiry, and creativity, as well as meet and strengthen all learners in their educational and spiritual growth.

Email: DOBrien@GRACEChristian.net

To learn more about Daniel, read his May 8, 0218 Staff Spotlight.

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Kellie Petty

English | Upper Campus

I joined the loving, Christ-centered GRACE community first as a parent and am now honored to be teaching English here. From an early age, I wanted to be a teacher. Hours of my childhood were spent “teaching” stuffed animals and my hapless younger sister. While GRACE students are certainly more engaged than those earliest “students,” I bring the same enthusiasm to the classroom. I love helping students become better readers and writers.

I was raised in a small community outside of Goldsboro, North Carolina. My bachelor’s degree in English and teaching certification was earned from UNC Wilmington. I taught high school in Wake County where my involvement in technology integration and innovation opened up opportunities outside the classroom. I transitioned into 9 years of technology sales, focused on K-12 schools. After my husband, Chris, completed graduate school, I welcomed the adventure of staying home with our two children, Kate and Jack, and eventually adding another, Lily. This time also allowed me to become active in the Children’s Ministry at First United Methodist Church Cary. My family and numerous pets provide endless entertainment (with plenty of messes) and represent my favorite hobby.

Email: KPetty@GRACEChristian.net

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Roman Pibl

History | Upper Campus

I love teaching and coaching. I love teaching history and coaching boys and girls soccer. Most importantly, I love teaching history and coaching soccer at GRACE Christian School. The Lord has truly blessed me in allowing me the opportunity to serve his kingdom here at GRACE. I was born in Canada but raised on Long Island. I attended Duke University where I majored in Economics and swam for four years on the Varsity Swim Team being the captain my senior year. I than attended Washington University School of Law and practiced law for 14 years. I married my wife, Doctor Lisa Grana, in 1990 and the Lord again blessed me with two beautiful daughters, Katarina and Alexa, who both graduated from GRACE. Then in 2006, the Lord lead me to GRACE and allowed me the opportunity to pursue my true passion. I am Head of the History Department here at GRACE and teach Advanced Placement World History, Advanced Placement US History, Advanced Placement US Government and Advanced Placement Microeconomics. I also coach the boys and girls varsity soccer teams and co-coach the varsity swim team.

Email: RPibl@GRACEChristian.net

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Alissa Rassette

Nurse | GRACE

I am so thankful for the opportunity to serve the children at GRACE as the school Nurse. I graduated from East Carolina University with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. 
 
This will be my 8th year working as a nurse and second year at GRACE. Over the years, I've worked with children and adults in cardiac surgery, oral surgery (I'm your gal for pulling those baby teeth), occupational health and pharmaceuticals.
 
My husband, Chad, and I have a son at GRACE and are members at Midtown Community Church in Raleigh. We absolutely love the community here at GRACE! When I have free time, I enjoy boating at the beach, traveling, exercising, watching sports, cooking, and reading. 
 
 
Alissa was featured in the September 19, 2017 Staff Spotlight. Click to read more about Alissa.
 
 
 
 
 
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Daniel Servi

PE | Upper Campus

My name is Daniel Servi and I’ve been teaching at GRACE Since 2014. I was born and raised in Wisconsin. I received a degree in multi-age physical education and a minor in Bible and coaching from Cedarville University in 2008 and I received a Masters in education from Liberty University in 2013. I am also the Varsity Golf Coach. I enjoy spending time with my wife, Emilie and my two sons, Micah and Trevor. 

My favorite verse is Matthew 11:28-30, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Email: DServi@GRACEChristian.net

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Zane Smitley

Science | Upper Campus

It is amazing how God leads in our lives. The first time I entered the doors of GRACE I knew God was leading me to teach, but the process had begun many years before. God had to first show and teach me important lessons in life. First he led me to college where I obtained a B.A. degree in Secondary Education of History. Next I traveled half way across the country to Kansas City to attend graduate school. Completing four years of classes and internship I earned a Doctorate degree in Chiropractic medicine. After 13 years of private practice in North Raleigh,God has led me back to my first love, teaching. I began teaching at GRACE in 2003 and have loved every minute of it.

My high school anatomy class is structured to apply class knowledge to practical applications. The students will be challenged through class work, dissection labs, and class projects. I hope to increase an awareness of various medical field opportunities which students could pursue after high school.

AP Biology provides students with an opportunity to develop a conceptual framework for modern biology, emphasizing applications of biological knowledge and critical thinking to environmental and social concerns. AP Biology is a high school course designed to be the equivalent of a college introductory course usually taken during the first year at colleges and universities across the nation.

I have enjoyed teaching 9th grade Biology where students have the opportunity to experience the details of God's creation. Students will explore photosynthesis, genetics, cell respiration and other components of creation.

Email: ZSmitley@GRACEChristian.net

Learn more about Zane in the October 17, 2017 Staff Spotlight

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Meagan Stone

Math | Upper Campus

My name is Meagan Stone, and this will be my sixth year teaching math at GRACE. I grew up in Kernersville, NC and attended Wesleyan Christian Academy in High Point. I love and appreciate my teachers there who invested in me and were wonderful, godly role models. Because of the impact Christian teachers had on my life, I developed a passion for Christian education.

After graduating from high school, I attended Wake Forest University and graduated in 2011 with a B.S. in Mathematics and a B.A. in Economics. I then pursued an M.S. in Mathematics at N.C. State University and completed that degree in May 2013. My husband and I got married while I was in graduate school. We've been married for six years, and we currently live in Clayton.

Email: MStone@GRACEChristian.net

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Greg Thorne

Engineering Strategy Games | 6th-12th

Strategy board games have been a private passion of mine since 1996. I thank Mr. Edwards for starting the Engineering Strategy Games class. I believe that modern board games are more than just fun, they can offer so many direct and indirect learning opportunities to our students (and to us). This year, I look forward to stressing the importance of good sportsmanship, respecting others, and finding enjoyment in winning or losing. Last year I was pleasantly surprised by the creativity and hard work the students put into their projects, and I look forward to seeing what surprises they come up with this year.

I grew up in the Chicago area, and was fortunate enough to be a part of seeing the birth of Willow Creek Community Church. God drew me to Taylor University and later to DePaul University. Currently, I am working full-time for SAS as a computer programmer, and my wife, Cindilee, is always active on the GRACE PTF. Our family has been fortunate enough to be a part of the GRACE community since 2007.

Email: GThorne@GRACEChristian.net

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Cindilee Thorne

After Care | 7th-12th Campus

Our family has been at GRACE since 2007.  I am thrilled to be stepping in as the After Care Coordinator for the upper campus and I look forward to chatting with and getting to know the after care students.  I have been involved with the GRACE PTF for many years, coordinating the Christmas store, serving on the hospitality committee, and currently coordinating the upper campus grade parents and the “We Love You Wednesday” monthly luncheons.

I have two students at GRACE, Trek is in 11th grade and Levi is in 9th grade. Our family is big into board games which led to my husband joining the GRACE family in 2016 to teach the Engineering Strategy Games elective.  We attend Hope Community Church where I serve in the Common Grounds coffee ministry.  I enjoy coffee, board games, book club, Bible study, and naps.

My favorite Bible verse is Hosea 6:6.

“I don’t want your sacrifices — I want your love,
I don’t want your offerings — I want you to know me. “ says the Lord.

I pray that I am a Blessing to the Lord and to all those He brings my way.

email: CThorne@GRACEChristian.net

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Beth Vanderkin

Bible | Upper Campus

Raised in the village of Brandon, Wisconsin I fell in love with history (and my future husband) in high school. I graduated from Trinity International University in Chicago with a BA in history and secondary education. For my husband's career in 2005, we moved and left behind deep dish pizza to sip sweet tea in Raleigh. Along the way, the Lord blessed us with four amazing children and most recently a wonderful son-in-law. Three of our children, who are all now alums, started attending GRACE in 2009, and the following year I began substitute teaching. Before I knew it, God led me to teach history and Bible at GRACE. Samuel, our youngest son, also attends GRACE and is entering high school this year.

In the fall of 2014, I had to take an abrupt leave of absence...healthy on Friday, but diagnosed with cancer on Saturday! We have relied on our faith in the Lord to give us strength and the wisdom of the doctors at Duke. For multiple years I've battled non-Hodgkin's lymphoma with aggressive treatment including chemotherapy, radiation and a stem cell transplant. I could not have endured everything I've been through without the love, prayers and support of my family, friends and the GRACE community. Although I am still undergoing cutting edge experimental immunotherapy treatment, I am cancer free! I am grateful for the opportunity to return this year to teach the Biblical Worldview class. In my classroom I look forward to lively discussions about God's Word, the world we live in and the choices we make. It is a privilege to walk with the seniors as they navigate this exciting final year of high school!

1 Thessalonians 5:15-18
"Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus."

Email: BVanderkin@GRACEChristian.net

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Anna Walters

Math | Upper Campus

My name is Anna Walters and I am thrilled to be part of the GRACE family!

Born and raised in Durham, NC, I have always called North Carolina home.  I received my BS in mathematics at Meredith College in 1999 as well as a NC Teaching License. My first seven years of teaching were spent in the public schools, first at Athens Drive and then at Havelock High School in Havelock, NC. My husband Tim and I were married in 2002 and in 2006 our family started to grow. We have two sons at GRACE - Ty in 7th, Ben in 6th - and our daughter Paige is in 5th grade at Morrisville Elementary. We also have a cutie-pie dog named Charlie.  This is my 7th year at GRACE and my 14th year as a teacher.....time flies when you are having fun!   Tim works for Maestro Productions and is a realtor with Group 15 Real Estate. Our church family is The Bridge Community Church in Morrisville.  

I look forward to another great year at GRACE!

Email: AWalters@GRACEChristian.net

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Elizabeth Walters

Art | Upper Campus

I am excited to be teaching middle and high school art at GRACE Christian School again this year. God called me to GRACE in January of 2010, and I am so glad that I listened to Him. I love teaching art at GRACE! I love the school and my students!

Originally from Birmingham, Alabama, I came to North Carolina for my first undergraduate degree in art from Wake Forest University. After college, I returned to Alabama and worked for an advertising firm as a graphic designer. I later started my own design company creating murals and custom art for commercial and residential interiors. At the time, I had art gallery representation in six states throughout the Southeast. After years of working as an artist, I returned to college and received another undergraduate degree from Auburn University's College of Architecture and a Master's Degree in Industrial Design. I worked for many years as a carpet designer in new product development. I was also busy teaching art on the side. I have taught many art classes throughout my life, but teaching art at GRACE has been my favorite position.

My role as a Christian art teacher is to guide my students so that they may develop their own unique spiritual gifts for the glory of God. I strive to provide the information, tools, and structure necessary to inspire independent discovery and life-long learning. I have experience designing a broad range of products, including carpet, ceramics, websites, clock faces, murals, magazine spreads, advertising, furniture, and children's book illustrations. I hope to bring this broad knowledge of different mediums to the students, offering them the opportunity to try different creative processes. Every student has been given talents, opportunities, and blessings from God. Everyone has his or her own uniquely important role. Art can be a wonderful vehicle for students to explore their own uniqueness. I strive to help my students accept their own God-given individuality and celebrate it rather than hiding within the crowd. The art classroom can be an excellent place for students to express their emotions, learn to solve problems, and explore within a Christian environment.

Email: EWalters@GRACEChristian.net

To learn more about Elizabeth, read her February 13, 2018 Staff Spotlight.

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Wendy Warlick

Photography Elective | Upper Campus

Hi! I'm Wendy Warlick and I am the Photography Elective teacher here at GRACE. I am very excited about the school year and sharing my love of photography with the students!

Photography has been a passion since my parents gave me a 110 film camera with a rotating flash cube. My husband and I own a photography company and both love to take pictures.

I have Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design from Liberty University. 

Chuck & I have been married since 1999. We have a son Daniel who is a 10th grader at GRACE. We attend Apex Baptist Church and are active in the audio/video ministry. 

My favorite Bible verse is Psalm 139:13-14 “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well” (NIV).

Email: WWarlick@GRACEChristian.net

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Paula Welch

Spanish | Upper Campus

Hola! My name is Paula Welch. I am a Carolina girl who has lived in different places, but returned to the Carolinas in 2013. I was born and raised in SC, then went to college in Virginia, where I met my husband, Larry, who is a native of Southern California. After our marriage, we began preparing for a cross cultural ministry that led us to the Republic of Panama in 1985. We worked with an indigenous group on the Northwest Coast of Panama as church planters and are blessed to keep in touch with believers from that area. We love returning to visit there when possible.

Along the way, we were blessed with three daughters, Amanda, Laura and Tiffany. Amanda is married to John and they live and work in Florida. Laura lives and works here in NC. Tiffany is married to Sterling and they live in Virginia. They are parents to our granddaughters, Ariana, and Annalise. We are proud of them and cherish times spent with our growing family.

After two decades in Panama, God led us back to California, where I received my teaching certification from ACSI and became involved in Christian Education. I have loved being involved in the lives of students in a way that challenges them not only academically, but also spiritually. One of my goals in teaching is to encourage students to know God and His written Word better and to make Him known to others in a way that is relevant culturally and linguistically.

After nine years in California, God stirred our hearts to relocate to NC. God definitely led me to GRACE, five years ago. It is a blessing to be part of the wonderful and encouraging Grace family. I enjoy teaching High School Spanish here and developing long term relationships with the students and families that God brings into my life.

Email: PWelch@GRACEChristian.net

Learn more about Paula in the October 31, 2017 Staff Spotlight

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Wendy Willard

LEAP | Upper Campus

My name is Wendy Willard and this will be my ninth year serving at GRACE.  Before coming to GRACE, I earned my Bachelor’s Degree in education from Bridgewater State University in Bridgewater, Massachusetts.  My husband, Kirk and I then moved back to Connecticut, where we are originally from, and I worked as a fifth-grade teacher in the elementary school I attended.  I was blessed to grow up on a sheep farm in Connecticut with great historical significance, but God moved us away again to this foreign land called, North Carolina, and for all but a brief sabbatical, we have been here for the last twelve years.  We now think of it as our home here on earth. We love it and GRACE Christian School is a big reason why we feel so at home here.

After working for two years in the Wake County Public School System, I came to this wonderful school and found my home.  After teaching three years of fourth grade and three years of fifth grade, I moved into the role of covering for our wonderful eighth grade U.S. History teacher and twelfth grade Bible teacher while God healed her. After a brief sabbatical to care for my own family members and earn my Master’s Degree from Liberty University with a degree in Educational Administration and Leadership, my two girls, Devon (senior) and Morgan (sophomore) are back home with our family here at GRACE.

This year my role will be that of teaching in our Learning Enrichment and Achievement Program and working with our teachers on professional development.  

Email: WWillard@GRACEChristian.net

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Marcia Wingerd

English | Upper Campus

After earning my B.A. in English-Communications from Trinity International University, I worked in the publishing industry for 20 years as a technical writer, editor, and project manager. My career enabled me to help people in diverse fields communicate their ideas effectively. In 2011, God brought my family to North Carolina, where I came to know GRACE as a parent when my oldest daughter was in 8th grade. Two years later, God led me to the classroom.

As I begin my 6th year on staff, I am looking forward to teaching 9th grade English and launching the GRACE Writing Center. I hope to create a place where students enjoy reading, learn to think critically, engage in discussion, and grow as writers. I especially enjoy teaching at GRACE because I have the opportunity to disciple students and encourage them in their walk with the Lord. I get to be a part of the loving community that GRACE is known for, contributing to it and benefiting from it as a parent and a teacher.

I have been married to Byron Wingerd for 26 years, and we have three children:  Emma, a junior at Appalachian State University; Caroline, a sophomore at GRACE; and Lauren, a 7th grader at GRACE. I enjoy reading and talking about books, playing strategy games, sketchnoting, walking and hiking, and cooking for family and friends. My favorite places are those that I have enjoyed with my family:  the Colorado mountains, the California coast, Mackinac Island (Michigan), and beautiful lakes in New Hampshire and Maine.

Email: MWingerd@GRACEChristian.net