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    Jim Gilliam

    Bass Guitar, Guitar, Piano, Saxophone

    People would be surprised to know that: "I was a car mechanic"

    Jim has a BM and MM in Piano from East Carolina University. He enjoys performing with his mom at a rest home and attending concerts in the area. His most influential music teachers were Jim Houlik and Henry Doskey. He has been a free-lance musician since high school, performing with many bands in all styles from classical to jazz. He has coached and accompanied singers and ensembles, played for musical theatre productions, and performed solo for countless weddings, parties, and church services. When he's not home with his dog, Daisy, he likes to travel to the mountains and go to the beach. Jim's favorite movie is "Sherlock Holmes" and  his favorite restaurant is Alisa's Kitchen. He says he is most proud of his students for their accomplishments.


    Paula Jenkins

    What I most admire about my students is: "the inspiration they give to me"

    Paula became part of the MAEC faculty in 2008. She studied piano and music education at Liberty University. Previously, she was the Assistant Music Director to the Troubadours, a music group at Lenoir Community College. Currently, she is the music director and pianist for Grace Baptist Church as well as a private teacher in Kinston and at MAEC. She grew up in Winterville, NC and her most influential music teachers were Nina Grace Register and Dr. David Ehrman. Though her favorite place to travel is Walt Disney World, Florida, when she's not at the MAEC, you can probably find her at home or at church. Her favorite movie is Somewhere In Time and favorite authors include Dani Johnson and John Maxwell. Some of her favorite things to do in Pitt County are attending concerts and shopping at New River Pottery or Stein Mart. Some people would probably be surprised to know that she enjoys interior decorating and worked with a decorating company for 18 years. 


    Alison Mossey-Ponzi

    People would be surprised to know that: "I absolutely love whitewater rafting!"

    Alison joined the MAEC faulty in 1996. She grew up in Plattsburgh, NY, but moved to CT for her undergraduate studies at the Hartt School of Music and moved to Greenville for her graduate degree in Music from ECU. Her most influential teachers were John Wion and Christine Gustafson. When she's not at the Academy, you can find her teaching at the Oakwood School or performing. She has performed with the Champlain Valley Symphony Orchestra and currently performs wth the Fayetteville Symphony Orchestra, Tar River Orchestra & Wind Ensemble, and the Wilson Symphony. She loves staying at home to spend time with her daughter and two dogs since she is often on the road with one of these orchestras, but her favorite places to travel are Paris or the mountains in NY or NC. Her favorite authors include John Grisham, Tim Lahague, and C.S. Lewis and her favorite movie of all-time is The Wizard of Oz. 


    Lori McLelland

    My favorite movie is: "too many to mention! Musicals, Rom-coms..."

    Lori received her Master in Music and Bachelor of Music-Music Education from East Carolina University and additional graduate studies in Choral Conducting from Appalachian State University. She specializes in classical, broadway, jazz, pop, rock, sacred, and contemporary Christian. Lori has 20 years experience in public and private school teaching, community music and theatre groups, and church music programs across North Carolina. She is an accompanist, music and theatre director, producer, choreographer across North Carolina. Lori was a founding member of contemporary Christian trio Faith, Hope, and Love. She is a vocal soloist with the Glenn Miller Orchestra and accompanist with the North Carolina Theatre and the East Carolina University School of Music. She has been recorded on the 2000 CD "Gentle Lightning."




    C. Dianne White, MT-BC

    Music Therapy, Piano, Voice

    Dianne is a nationally Board-Certified Music Therapist who received a Bachelor of Music Therapy at Radford University.  Originally from Galax, VA, she enjoys traveling to ANYWHERE, USA!  When not at the Music Academy, you can find Dianne in church, performing a concert or at home.  Her creative talent shines bright in her artistry of songwriting.  She enjoys teaching individuals of all abilities and helping to unlock their world with creative expression.  Her passion is empowering individuals to independence through helping them discover and unlock their individuality and inner strength.  She enjoys reading anything from Maya Angelou and loves to dine at The Olive Garden.  Her favoirte movie is The Man From Snowy River.  You may be surprised to know she has 17 grandchildren - be sure to ask her about them!  She truly enjoys teaching others and admires student's creativity and talents.  Dianne is passionate about her work with music therapy and in music and being able to empower others through music.