Gracious Hands Transitional Housing 


Jenny Updegraft - President 

Originally a California native, Jenny, and her husband, Chris put down roots in Charlotte almost 20 years ago. Together they have raised their four children and now get to enjoy three grandchildren.

Jenny has worked as the assistant to the Principal at Comenius School of Creative Leadership in Fort Mill, SC, Conference Director for Heritage International Ministries and as General Manager of the Heritage International Ministries Conference center.

Currently, Jenny is a Realtor with the Ordan Reider Group at Allen Tate serving the Charlotte area. It is this passion to see families find a home that inspires her work with Gracious Hands. Making a difference in the lives of women and children in crisis is at the heart of her mission. Jenny is honored to be a part of the team at Gracious Hands.

Shirley Culbreth - Vice President

Pastor Shirley Culbreth is a native of Camden, S.C. Upon moving to Charlotte, N.C., Pastor Culbreth's gifts and talents fueled the calling and commitment to preaching and teaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Currently she is the Senior Pastor of St. Peter's Baptist Church in Charlotte. She is a graduate of Pfeiffer University and the founder of the Ministers Alliance Biblical Training Correlation, Inc. In addition, she serves as Director of the C&H Foundation, Inc. 

Her favorite words of encouragement: God has a flavor called favor!

Sharon Staton - Secretary/Treasurer

An Ohio native, Sharon moved to Charlotte in 1995. Sharon and her husband, Thomas were married  in June of 2004 and are the proud parents of two sons and one daughter. In addition, they have one grandson.

Sharon has worked in the Long Term Care Industry for over 20 years and is currently employed with Peak Resources of Charlotte. 

Sharon is very involved with the community and youth in particular. She is co-owner of the football league - Queen City Panthers and has been involved with the football world for over 14 years. Sharon is honored to be a board member.

Basil Foster -  Community Volunteer Director

Basil Foster Native New Yorker moved to Charlotte, NC at an early age. He was admired by his grand-mother for his success in life. He attended West Charlotte High School upon graduation in 1982 he attended DeVry Technical Institute, Woodbridge NJ. Returning to NC in 1986 he attended Hood Seminary at Livingstone College in Salisbury, NC. From a past marriage union, he is the father of 3 and 7 grand –children.

He retired from Charlotte Mecklenburg School Systems after 20 years of service. He now is a Financial Advisor with Western & Southern Insurance Company. Currently is Pastor at Freedom Ministries of Jesus Christ International here in Charlotte. Basil worked with the following community organizations Right Moves For Youth, Young Men Arise, Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, Combination Community Choir, Resurrection Community Choir, Parent Advocate & Educator and very heavenly involved in Church Ministries various Community Organizations.


Denasia Alston-Walker - Community Partners Director

Denasia Alston-Walker, a North Carolina native received her higher education at North Carolina Central University where she obtained a Masters of Public Administration.

During her career, she has offered a diverse set of skills ranging from community and organizational development within both the public and the private sector. With this skill set, Denasia utilizes her knowledge, personal and professional relationships to motivate others to support in giving. Therefore, Denasia chooses to navigate life with compassion and humility which embodies the true essence of North Carolina Central University mantra of truth and Service.


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