UNC Wesley Staff

The spiritual backbone of Wesley, our staff provide much more than religious knowledge, good life advice, and a list of all the best thrift stores--they truly wish to help your grow in your faith, your purpose, and your convictions

 

Ryan Spurrier, Campus Minister

Welcome to Wesley, a community seeking to help each other hear God's voice and grow into the women and men God is calling us to be.  Since arriving at Carolina in the summer of 2015, I have loved being part of this dynamic group striving to grow in faith and live faithfully in Chapel Hill--and all the places we go on retreats and mission trips.  I am an elder in the United Methodist Church, and before UNC, I served as an associate pastor in North Augusta and Greenwood, SC.  Before that, I earned a B.S. in Math from Clemson and a Master's of Divinity from Duke Divinity School (but don't worry, I am a Tar Heel!).  When not at Wesley, I love working out, playing ultimate Frisbee, and figuring out how to be a dad (my wife, Kyrsten, and I are parents to the coolest kid we've ever met).

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Julia Riley, Ministry InterN

Hey everyone! I'm a third year at Duke Divinity School from Houston, Texas with a degree in Communication Studies from the University of Texas. I spent a lot of time at the Texas Wesley while in college and worked there after graduating, so I have a special place in my heart for Wesley! I love reading, traveling, trying out new restaurants and coffee shops, Spanish, podcasts, board games, Texas football, ghost stories, and my 3-legged cat Sheldon. Let's grab coffee! I can't wait to get to know you.

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John White, Ministry Intern

Hello Wesley! My name is John and I'm a first-year M.Div student at Duke Divinity School and a long time Tar Heel fan. Lately I've been hanging out at the intersection of counseling and ministry. Helping equip and empower others to move forward in their journeys really gets my toes tappin. All of this writing is getting me kind of hungry for a Time Out biscuit. Carpe diem!

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laura gallo, administrative associate & fairy godmother

Shortly after moving to Chapel Hill with my family 20 years ago, Wesley's campus minister gave me the opportunity to join the ministry with four words—"Come, check us out."  When I did, I found an active ministry that makes the world a better place.  To this day, I enjoy being behind the scenes, taking care of all of Wesley’s administrative needs. My favorite days at Wesley include time spent with students and visiting with alumni when they stop by to visit. Thanks to my husband, Larry, and his career in college athletics, I have been blessed over the years to live and be involved in a university community. Larry and I are the proud parents of two sons—both UNC-CH grads. When I am not at Wesley, I cherish time spent with our family. 

(Editor's Note:  Our students love Laura so much they have nicknamed her "The Fairy Godmother" and named our Annual Cornhole Tournament Trophy after her).

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cecily nisbet, development Director

I was born and brought up primarily in Hawaii and on Cape Cod, although I spent a few years in Charlotte and received my first bible from Myers Park Methodist in third grade. After growing up in the hotel business, I majored in Hotel Management at Cornell University, but for the past twenty years I have done development for organizations ranging from Harvard University to Kidzu Children's Museum to UNC's Friday Center for Continuing Education.  My husband and I moved to Chapel Hill from Boston in 2009, when I quickly became involved with University United Methodist Church.  I enjoy being a mother to Cornelia, 12, and Graham, 11, as well as being a Girl Scout leader.

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Student Leaders

Students are the heart of our ministry and the way we carry out our mission is ever-changing based on their gifts, talents, and perspectives. We're always looking for new ways to show the love of God and underrepresented areas to serve, so we welcome you to join our team!


 
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Dawson Lane, Up Focus Group Leader

Hi, I’m a senior from Raleigh, double-majoring in Biology & Psychology. My favorite thing about Wesley is the spontaneous conversation, fun, and sheer absurdity that comes from just hanging out in the Loft on any given afternoon.

This year, I hope the Up Focus Group can really dedicate itself to guiding people into new and meaningful encounters with God, both through communal and individual spiritual practices.


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Madeline Chandler, Retreats

Hello! I’m Madeline from Ocean Isle Beach, NC. I am a sophomore this year hoping to major in biostatistics at the Gillings School of Public Health. My favorite thing about Wesley is the wonderful people I have met and the friendships I’ve formed! I can’t wait to have mind-opening, faith-building, friendship-forming experiences at fall and spring retreats this year!


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Linnea Howe, Retreats

Hey! I'm junior from Raleigh and I'm double majoring in Global Studies and Hispanic Linguistics. My favorite thing about Wesley is hanging out in the Loft with others. I love having a place where I know there will always be people to laugh or study with.

This year I hope that the retreats help people to go deeper--to go deeper with God and each other.


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Sarah Letchworth, Small Groups

Hey there! My name is Sarah Letchworth and I am originally from a very small town called La Grange (it literally means the barn in french and it’s a pretty accurate description). I am a nursing major class of 2021 and I am so excited to be serving in my role as small group co-chair this year! I have always loved Wesley for the great community it provides to all who walk through its doors.

I hope that my Small Group Team can continue that aspect of the ministry while also developing it further by delving into Scripture together!


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justis mitchell, small Groups

Hey friends! My name is Justis Mitchell and I am a junior here at UNC. I am double-majoring in Linguistics and Human Development and Family Studies, with a minor in Speech and Hearing Sciences (I know, it's a mouthful). With this, I -hopefully- plan to go to audiology school and become a pediatric audiologist. I am originally from a little town called Welcome, NC, which is right outside of Winston-Salem.


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andrew Epermanis, Worship

Hello! I’m Andrew Epermanis although everyone in Wesley calls me Snowflower. I’m from Winston Salem, NC and am currently a sophomore. My favorite part of Wesley is the close knit community and the meaningful discussion that arises.  This year I hope to create a worship environment where everyone can feel engaged with God and one another.


Amber Kupfer, In Focus Group Leader

Hi, I’m a junior from Charlotte, NC. I’m studying Biology with minors in Chemistry and Cognitive Science. My favorite thing about Wesley is all the fun events that we do. I have gone on the spring break mission trip the past 2 years and they were some of the greatest experiences I’ve ever had. The people I travelled with had the biggest hearts and the people I met there were so welcoming.

My hope for Wesley this year is to bring those feelings of warm hospitality and growing faith communities that we felt on the mission trips into the everyday practices of Wesley. I hope everyone can feel like they loved when in fellowship with us.

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avery buie, hospitality

Hi! I'm from Charlotte and I'm a junior majoring in Global Studies and PWAD, with a minor in Conflict Management. I am very excited to be serving on the In Focus leadership team in the section of Hospitality for a second year, and hope that everyone will find a place that feels like home for themselves in Wesley.

My favorite thing about Wesley is either Fall Retreat or the Big Wesley Meme Competition. Or Sunday Night Dinners. It's a toss up really.

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Noah Lancaster, Hospitality

I’m a senior Chemistry major from Albemarle, NC. My favorite part of Wesley is the community that I have become a part of. College is challenging, but having a group of friends to journey alongside me as I seek to discern my calling has been a significant (and crucial!) part of my college experience.

This year, as a Hospitality co-team leader, I’m excited to learn more about how God is leading our ministry to grow in our understanding of what it means to be hospitable. In particular, I’m interested in working to make everyone feel like a valued part of the UNC Wesley community.

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tate rosenblatt, Social

Hi, I’m a junior from Charlotte, NC, majoring in Political Science with minors in Psychology and Spanish. I have a lot of interests, including: Having conversations about Jesus, politics, sports, or anything else; ultimate frisbee, tennis, winning fantasy football leagues, and watching Carolina beat everybody else. My Not-so-fun Fun Fact is that I have served as a counsel on the UNC Undergraduate Attorney General's Staff

But, my real Claim to Fame is that I went to the same middle school as Steph Curry.

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David woodlief, Social

Hi, I’m a second year/sophmore-ish student from Summerfield, NC. I’m a Political Science and Economics double major. My favorite things about Wesley are Sunday night worship and my small group.

I hope that we are able to help create events that people are genuinely excited to attend, participate in, and lead and that the events will help them grow closer to one another.

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Katie distefano, out focus group leader

My name is Katie Distefano and I am a senior majoring in Dramatic Art and Linguistics and minoring in Speech and Hearing Sciences. My favorite thing about Wesley is the authentic community. I love that Wesley is a space to be who you are, wherever you are on your faith journey, and to learn and grow alongside each other.

As I continue in the role of Out Focus Group Leader, I'm looking forward to deepening the relationships we have already built and continuing to seek out new relationships


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Becca Black, Evangelism & Outreach

Hey y’all! I’m Becca and I’m a second-year, Pre-Business major from Fayetteville, NC. My favorite part of Wesley is building holy friendships :) My greatest hope for the year is that the UNC community will see Jesus in us!


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mcrae scott, mercy & justice

Hi, my name is McRae. My hobbies are attending Wesley Dinners, sleeping, and long walks on Franklin St. I am a junior from Pink Hill, NC, which is a small town about an hour away from the coast. I am majoring in Psychology with a double minor in Religious Studies and Chinese. I have a deep passion for learning more about ways to decrease the stigmatization of mental health and understand the depth of systemic racism.

My favorite thing about Wesley is the community. I get to be a part of an awesome environment that I can contribute to and likewise learn from. This year I hope that Wesley continues to invite and allow the space for students to ask the hard questions and learn to serve others in different ways that the community calls us to.


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Hannah Helms, Missions

I’m Hannah Helms from Wake Forest, NC. I am a sophomore majoring in Biomedical Engineering. My favorite thing about Wesley is how it has deepened my relationship with Jesus while I enjoy fun Christian fellowship.

I hope that my ministry team will show people some of the many ways they can serve and worship God.


Delaney davis, Student Board Co-Chair

Hi all! I'm a junior double-majoring in Chemistry and Anthropology with a minor in German from High Point, NC. I love that Wesley is a place where students can think critically and holistically about faith, deepening their understandings beyond what they were taught in Sunday School back home. It's also a place to integrate spiritual growth into everyday college life, with a support system dedicated seeing you achieve in a way that uniquely nurtures you as an individual.

My goal for the Board this year is more integration and transparency with students and the community, building intergenerational relationships and utilizing our gifts to better support Wesley.

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James depolo, Church partnerships

Hi, I’m a junior (class of 2021) from right here in Chapel Hill. I’m studying business administration, and through my role on Wesley’s Board of Directors, I hope that we can make the board more transparent - and help members of Wesley to realize what the board does and how it serves them.

My favorite part of Wesley is my small group.

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Ashley Broadwater, Fundraising

Hi, I’m a senior from Gastonia, NC, studying Public Relations! My favorite thing about Wesley is the people! I’ve made so many amazing friends — including my best friends — that have helped me in hard times and made me laugh.

I hope the fundraising team is able to share stories that show others how influential Wesley is in people’s lives, and to be able to raise money to continue to help students and those in need flourish.

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UNC Wesley Board of Directors

Lee May, Co-Chair

Lee May, Co-Chair

Chris Dias , Treasurer

Chris Dias, Treasurer

Kat Wright, Co-Chair

Kat Wright, Co-Chair

Kevin Cline

Kevin Cline

Delaney Davis

Delaney Davis

Nicole Davis

Nicole Davis

Rev. Carol Goehring

Rev. Carol Goehring

Regan Johnson

Regan Johnson

Ben Lasley

Ben Lasley

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