Church Staff

Tal Madison, Senior Pastor

Tal’s service at Grace began July 1, 2015.  Growing up in Shallotte, NC, he answered the call to pastoral ministry as a senior in high school.  He received his undergraduate degree from Methodist College (now Methodist University) and his masters from Duke University.  He received his first appointment to serve as pastor of a United Methodist Church in 1983.

Julie Madison is Tal’s wife; together they have one daughter, Ragan. In his free time he enjoys camping, Duke basketball and martial arts.

Patricia Cox DiGiuseppe, Associate Minister of Visitation

Patricia joined the staff at Grace in April of 2010. She was born in Pitt County, NC and lived most of her married life in Beaufort County. After her husband died, she retired from a 30-year banking career to enter the ministry. Patricia graduated from Duke Divinity School in 2003 and served as pastor of Trinity Methodist Church in Belhaven, NC and Hebron Methodist Church in Pantego, NC before moving to Wilmington, NC to be near her grandchildren.

In her spare time, Patricia enjoys spending time at the beach.

Open, Director of Children’s Ministries


Kelley Ahlers, Director of Youth Ministries

Kelley Ahlers joined Grace UMC in October of 2016. Kelley comes from a deep history of ministry. She started in youth ministry 22 years ago when she assisted a church plant with her father in Emerald Isle. Kelley eventually opened a FairTrade coffee shop in Emerald Isle but after selling the shop and moving to Wilmington, in between 5 kids, tutoring and homeschooling, she knew she was called back into ministry. You can read more about Kelley in our post here.

Jerry Cribbs, Director of Music Ministries

Jerry joined the staff at Grace in July of 2003. He graduated from East Carolina University with a BA in Music Education and a Masters in Music Education. Jerry served as choral director at various schools in New Hanover County from 1980 until his retirement in 2004. He also served the school system as Director of Arts Education, Director of Arts Education and Public Relations, and Director of Human Resources.

Jerry is married to Cheryl and they have two adult sons, Adam and Neil. Jerry is also the music director of Cape Fear Chorale, a community chorus. He has also served as an adjunct professor at UNC-W and CFCC.

Judy Siebold, Organist

Judy began playing the organ at Grace in January of 2004. She studied music with the remarkable, Heinrich Fleischer, at the University of Minnesota.

Judy is originally from St. Paul, Minnesota.   She loves spending time with her family and friends and music consumes her entire life!

Debbie Ashe, Director of Operations

Debbie began working at Grace in the spring of 1992.  She graduated from UNCW with a Degree in Sociology/Social Work and worked with adoptions and protective service work for children.

Debbie is originally from the Wilmington area (Rocky Point). Debbie is married to Wayne and she has two grown children, Jessica and Rebecca.  In her spare time she loves gardening and traveling.

Marion Little, Administrative Assistant

Marion became a member at Grace in 2004 and joined the staff in 2009. She attended the University of South Carolina and worked for many years as an administrative assistant and also worked in the furniture and interior design industry.

Marion is originally from Massachusetts and she and her husband, Brian, lived in Delaware for several years before relocating to Wilmington, NC. Marion is a member of the Grace Chancel Choir and the Cape Fear Chorale. In her spare time, Marion enjoys gardening, reading and paper crafts.

Charles Sanders, Accountant

Charles joined the staff in January, 2010.  He retired from the University of North Carolina Wilmington after 30 years, where he served as Director of Purchasing.  Charles owns a Tax and Accounting business as well.

He is married to Myrtle, and they have two grown boys.  Charles is active in the Boy Scouts, serving on the Eagle Review Board, sings in his church choir and the Cape Fear Chorale.

Allison Barrett Carter, Web Editor

Allison Carter is a writer who found blogging who found content marketing and social media marketing. After living in the Triangle for 10 years, where she launched the NC Blogger Network and consulted dozens of businesses in online content marketing, she and her husband moved with their two little boys to the beach! While seeking out the quieter life, Allison knew that God was calling her to use her passions and talents. She is now the Managing Editor for two lifestyle magazines in Brunswick County and relishes the opportunity to help people find Grace through the website and social media.


Olivia Walsh, Social Media Manager

Olivia Walsh first joined the staff of Grace in 2017 as an intern and, after five months,  in February 2018 became Social Media Manager. Olivia is a senior graduating in the fall of 2018 from the University of North Carolina – Wilmington. She is majoring in communication studies with a minor in economics. Olivia is a native of Wilmington who enjoys reading, traveling, and watching football with her father.