Our Staff

It takes a big heart to shape little minds! Our staff has over 300 collective years of experience in the teaching field or experience with young children.
Linda Morton

We are excited to have Linda as our new Director for the 2020-2021 school year! Linda received her BS in Business Administration from Meredith College. She is a long-time member of St. Luke UMC and has been teaching three-year-olds since joining us in 1989. Linda has two daughters and three grandchildren.

Ashley Melpolder

Ashley teaches one of our two-year-old classes. She is currently completing her Teacher's Certification from Appalachian State. Ashley has worked in several day care settings and enjoys working with preschoolers. She is married with two girls.

Christine Hillard

Christine teaches one of our four-year-old classes. She joined our staff in 2019 after working for fifteen years in Lee County Public schools. Christine is currently working on her Bachelor's of Education. Christine is married with two children. 

Cathy Lewis

Cathy runs our one-year-old  program. She joined our staff in 2002. She is well known in the community for her many years of devoted service at Buffalo Presbyterians Preschool. Cathy has also worked in our church’s After School Program. She has two sons and a daughter, and is the proud grandmother of eleven grandchildren, including two sets of twin girls!

Amanda Powers

Amanda teaches one of our four-year-old classes. She attended East Carolina University, and graduated with a BS in Child Development and Family Relations. Amanda joined our staff in 1989. She served as a previous director of the St. Luke After School program. Amanda has two children and two grandchildren.

Monica Ibarra

Monica serves as a Teacher's Assistant. She is bilingual, with a background in Dermatology, Urgent Care and Aesthetics. Monica has seven years experience working with children ages three months to preteens, and enjoys dancing, running, and spending time with loved ones! 

Carolyn Lee

Carolyn teaches one of our two-year-old classes.  She joined our staff in 1993. Carolyn attended Fayetteville State Univ. and Fayetteville Tech. She served at Haymount UMC as the Director of the Mother’s Morning Out program and taught a two-year-old preschool class. Carolyn is the current Director of the St. Luke After School Care program. She has three sons and three grandchildren.

Katherine Wheby

Katherine teaches one of our four-year-old classes. She received a BA in Elementary Education from UNC Chapel Hill and taught elementary school before joining our staff in 2011. Katherine has been very involved in the planning and implementation of the children’s ministry at St. Luke UMC. She has two daughters.

Kelsey Price

Kelsey serves as a Teacher's Assistant. She received a BA in Political Science from California State University of Bakersfield. She has served as a leader on the Children's Ministry at her church for over 8 years. She is married and has a son who attended our preschool before he started his journey to elementary school!

Tonya Walden

Tonya serves as a Teacher's Assistant. She attended Central Carolina Community College and has fourteen years of experience working with toddlers. She has worked at a preschool and has also been a private nanny for several years. Tonya enjoys spending time with her husband and three children.

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