Melissa Bareford


Melissa has served in the children’s ministry at Grace since 2012 and been on staff since 2014.   Melissa has been married to her husband David since 1990 and has two daughters, Eleanor and Amelia.  Melissa grew up in Indiana and settled in Chicago after school.  She and her family moved to Woodland in 2012 to be closer to family and “take a break from the city.”

Although in recent years Melissa’s focus has been in children’s ministry (she served as Director of Children Ministries at First Evangelical Free Church in Chicago for 5 years), her background is in theater.  She holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in theater and worked in the Chicago professional theater for 16 years.  She still loves theater and works regularly as a teacher and director with Journey Theater Arts Group, a Christian youth theater company, in Vancouver.

Melissa grew up with 5 brothers and has always had a “I can do that too” attitude. She firmly believes that if the project is in the “Home Depot DIY Book” then she should be able to do it—and frequently tries to prove it. When she has time to relax Melissa loves to spend time with her family, read great books (she is somewhat obsessed Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer), and quilt.