Rev. Sam Martin

Senior Pastor/Head of Staff
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Reverend Sam Martin is serving as Senior Pastor/Head of Staff at James Island Presbyterian Church. Following his graduation with an Associate of Science Degree from Louisburg Junior College, he played professional baseball before returning to school to earn a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology degree from UNC-Asheville, and a Master of Divinity from Duke Divinity School. Sam grew up in the United Methodist Church and began his ministry in the mountains of North Carolina. For nearly thirty-four years, Sam has served churches in Western North Carolina, eastern North Carolina, and in the low country of South Carolina. Sam has served United Methodist, Baptist and Presbyterian (U.S.A.) congregations and recently completed serving as Moderator of the Charleston Atlantic Presbytery. He also worked with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes where he was on staff for five years as Area Director of twenty five counties in eastern North Carolina. He has five years of new church development experience, is an avid story teller and loves to meet people and hear their stories of how God is transforming their lives. In his “spare time,” he loves to hunt and fish and spend time outside.

Sam married “his bride” Amy Strong nearly thirty-four years ago, after having been introduced to her by his older sister. Together, Sam and Amy have two beautiful children, Caleb and Amy Kate. Caleb is 25 and a full time Firefighter in Summerville, S.C., post-graduation from the Citadel in 2017. He will be married in September of 2020. Amy Kate is 22 and finishing her last semester at the College of Charleston and majoring in Health Science. She will pursue her Physician’s Assistant degree following her marriage in August of 2020. Amy is employed by the VA in downtown Charleston and has been an R.N. for better than thirty years and sings in our church choir. Together, they are very excited to serve the James Island Community of faith.

Barbara Manaker

Director of Music
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Barbara Ector Manaker is the director of music at James Island Presbyterian Church. She graduated from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education with piano as her major instrument. She taught Elementary music in private and public schools in Maryland and here in Charleston for more than 8 years. She directed a choral program in all schools and even started the Handbell Choir at Porter Gaud School. Barbara’s passion for church music began at an early age. She sang in church choirs all her life. While at Porter Gaud School and while she attended UNCG, she studied under wonderful directors. This choral education continued when she attended the Montreat Worship and Music Conference for the last 29 years. After becoming a member of the church and Chancel choir of JIPC in 1989, Barbara was asked to direct the youth choir in 1990. This quickly expanded to directing the Adult Bell choir in 1991. Soon after that, a search for a new Chancel Choir director began and Barbara was asked to take the job. She has been the director ever since. During this time, the choral program has expanded to 6 choirs (Cherubs, Elementary, Mid and Senior Highs, Youth Bells, Adult Bells and Chancel Choir.) This has been Barbara’s dream job, working at a church she loves, with a staff and congregation she loves. Barbara has also taught private piano lessons since 1988. Being inspired by her teacher and sister, Jan Pesavento, she continued in her footsteps teaching students of all ages to play the piano. Many of these students are members of JIPC and are participants of the church music program.Barbara has two grown children, Elissa K. Watson, who is married to Jake Watson and lives in Greenville, SC; and Taylor Keathley, who works with Fox Music House. Barbara lives on James Island with Seth, her husband of over 19 years.

Elizabeth (Beth) Parler

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Elizabeth Parler joined James Island Presbyterian in 1993, and she joined the staff in 1998. She received a Bachelor of Science degree from the College of Charleston and had additional studies in Public Administration. Prior to working with JIPC, Beth worked in the local private-non-profit community, working with the Juvenile Restitution Program, Inc., an organization that worked with juvenile offenders as well as the victims of their offenses. Beth is married to David Parler, the principal of Camp Road Middle School on James Island. They have two children: Catherine, a student at Union Presbyterian Seminary; and Alex, a student at the MUSC College of Medicine.

Allison Hubbard

Director of Discipleship
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Allison is a longtime Charleston resident and was confirmed at JIPC in 1996. She studied biology at Presbyterian College along with courses in religion and Christian Education. In 2008, she accepted a call to Youth and Children’s ministry at JIPC where she worked with all children birth to age 18. During that time, she studied youth ministry through Columbia Theological Seminary. In 2011, she married Chris Hubbard, a childhood friend, and they welcomed their daughter Summer into the world in 2013. She resigned from her position in 2014 in order to spend more time with Summer. While she loved working part-time and being at home, the call back to ministry persisted and she is excited to be back on staff at JIPC. She looks forward to helping develop cohesive discipleship opportunities for JIPC members young and old. When not at church, the Hubbards love being anywhere outside, especially at the beach, fishing, swimming, or out on the boat!

Elizabeth Souter

Director Of Children’s Ministry
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Elizabeth is a lifelong Presbyterian and is passionate about equipping the youngest members of the church with a solid foundation of faith. Elizabeth is married to Michael and they have two sons, Thomas and Jacob. Elizabeth enjoys trying out the newest restaurants around Charleston, being outdoors, meeting people, and above all exploring her call here at James Island Presbyterian.

Marissa Whaley

Administrative Assistant
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Marissa is a James Island native. She is a lifelong member of St. James Presbyterian Church, USA where she has served on several ministries to include moderator of the St. James Young Adult Ministry, service ministry, nominating committee, liturgical team and singer on the Praise Team to name a few. Marissa received her Bachelor of Arts in Corporate Communication from Queens University of Charlotte and her Master of Arts in Human Resources Management from Webster University-Charleston. Marissa’s love and passion for the work of Christ led her to James Island Presbyterian Church, where she has been employed since 2019. Marissa has two beautiful children: Jayden, a student at James Island Charter High School; and Mackenzie, a student at James Island Elementary School. In her free time, Marissa loves to make candles, write poetry and socialize with friends.

Hugh Knight

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Hugh was born and raised in Charleston, South Carolina. He graduated with degrees in Music and Business from Furman University in 2002. He has been a teacher and coach at Porter Gaud for the past 18 years. At Porter Gaud, he teaches courses in Music Theory and Music Appreciation. He also directs the jazz band, handbell choir, and serves as the musical director for the annual Upper School Musical. In addition, he is the accompanist for the lower and middle school choirs. He is also heavily involved in athletics where he is the head boys and girls coach for the Cross Country and Track and Field teams. At James Island Presbyterian, he served as a substitute organist/accompanist for a full year before officially coming on staff 2 years ago as the full-time organist and handbell director. He is married to Meredith Knight and they have 2 daughters, Allison and Anna.

Ricky Willis


Session – Class of 2020

Beth Tyrrell – Clerk of Session
Stephanie Pritchett – Treasurer

Reverend Sam Martin
Reverend Cameron Smith

  • Nancy Brownell
  • Jason Hughes

  • Jon Frye
  • Lynn Anne Gillen

  • Amanda McKendrick
  • Catherine McLoud

  • John Pritchett
  • Ed Gilstrap

  • Anne Hall

  • David Hendricks

  • Steven Long
  • Paul Roof
  • Mark Mitchum
  • Peg Russell

  • Miles Stalvey

  • Emily Oswald
  • Joshua Stokes
  • Sue Urie
  • Mary Beth Meggett

  • Mahlon Newlin

Deacon – Class of 2020

  • Ken Abernethy

  • Louise Bavier

  • Karie Ann Crowther

  • Charlotte Culpepper

  • Victoria Gilstrap

  • Taylor Keathley

  • Billy McCord

  • Beth Moore

  • Don Moore

  • Shannon Moore

  • Russ Neimy

  • Cheryl Stepka-Tracey

  • Bonnie Thompson

  • Morgan Tremayne

  • Barrett Ulm

  • Paul Urie

Trustees – Class of 2020

  • Kevin Tingley, Chair

  • Elton Culpepper

  • Drew Evans

  • Karin Roof

  • Julianne Stokes