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Director

Fr. Juan José Hernández, L.C. | (919) 684-1882

Fr. Juan José Hernández, L.C. became Director of the Duke Catholic Center on July 1, 2022 as appointed by Bishop Luis Rafael Zarama, Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Raleigh, NC. Previously, he spent 8 years as Head Chaplain at Holy Spirit Preparatory School in Atlanta, GA. Fr. Juan José has been a priest for 10 years with his community,  the Legionaries of Christ. Before the priesthood, he studied engineering at Georgia Tech when he encountered Christ and his own vocation. His experience is one that provides him with insight into students’ dreams of success, as well as a perspective on what truly matters.

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Director of Development

Emma Carpenter '11 | (704) 267-3439

Emma has served at the Duke Catholic Center since her graduation from Duke in 2011. Emma began her career at the DCC on the ministry side as Peer Ministry Coordinator and, later, Director of Communication. After ten years of student-facing ministry, Emma pivoted to the DCC development team. Emma served two years as Associate Director of Development before stepping into the role of Director of Development in 2023. Emma is excited to invite Duke Catholic parents, alumni, and other stakeholders to partner in the DCC's mission to build Christ's Kingdom at Duke and beyond.

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Assistant Chaplain and Faith Formation Coordinator

Fr. Andrew LaBudde, LC | (919) 684-8959

Fr. Andrew LaBudde was born in Atlanta. He joined the Legionaries of Christ in 2001 and has studied and carried out pastoral work in Germany, Spain, Italy, and the United States. Fr. LaBudde received his licentiate degree in Philosophy with a specialization in metaphysics from the Pontifical Regina Apostolorum College in Rome, Italy. From that same college, he received a bachelor’s degree in Sacred Theology. He was ordained in Rome in December 2014. He has served as a Formator in the Legion of Christ Novitiate and, over the past five years, has been involved in pastoral work in Germany. 

As the Assistant Chaplain, Father Andrew administers sacraments, saying Masses and hearing confessions for the Duke student population. Fr. Andrew leads our RCIA program as the Faith Formation Coordinator. In this role, Fr. Andrew helps students who wish to become Catholic by preparing them for the sacraments of initiation. He also organizes opportunities for continued spiritual growth for Catholics on campus.

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Director of Music Ministry

Blake Bruchhaus | (919) 236-7972

Originally from Kinder, Louisiana, Blake Bruchhaus is a liturgical musician and liturgist with over 17 years experience directing music ministries. He holds an MAR in Liturgical Studies from Yale Divinity School and the Yale Institute of Sacred Music where he was awarded the Liturgical Studies Prize. He completed the Master of Sacred Music degree in Choral Conducting at the University of Notre Dame and the Bachelor of Music degree in Sacred Music at Centenary College of Louisiana. Blake gained extensive pastoral ministry experience serving as Director of Music and Liturgy at St. George Catholic Church in Baton Rouge, LA and St. Joseph Catholic Church in Shreveport, LA. He is excited to work with students in his ministry, praising the Lord alongside them at the Duke Catholic Center. 

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Business Manager

Ruth Anne Kennedy | (919) 684-3354

Ruth Anne Kennedy joined the Duke Catholic Center in December 2011. She relocated to Durham from Stillwater, Oklahoma. Ruth Anne was previously the Executive Vice-President for the Stillwater Board of REALTORS, a local non-profit trade association and has several years experience in administrative roles and has served in public office. She and her husband have two sons and three grandchildren. Ruth Anne stated “I look forward everyday to working with the students at Duke as we all nurture our faith. As a convert to the church, I am as young in my faith as the students are and know we will all be able to continue to grow and nourish our faith together.”

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Associate Director of Development

Alejandra Mack | (919) 935-3734 

Alejandra joined the Duke Catholic Center in 2023 as the Associate Director of Development.  Originally from Mexico City, she earned a bachelor’s degree in Pedagogy and has over a decade of experience in International Business Development. This journey culminated with the successful completion of an MBA in 2021.

What drew Ale to the Duke Catholic Center was the unique opportunity to integrate her professional background with her deep faith. She is enthusiastic about contributing to the expansion of the DCC's mission and the continued development of a nurturing community for Duke University students. She envisions a place where students find a sense of belonging, deepen their faith through a profound connection with Jesus, and develop the leadership skills necessary for the next chapter in their lives.  She is committed to help develop the resources to make this vision a reality.  

Ale lives in Durham with her husband Michael, and enjoys traveling, golfing, and cycling, especially on the Tobacco Trail.

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Assistant Director of Development

Ali Shoenfelt | 919.593.0964 

Ali is thrilled to serve as Assistant Director of Development for the Duke Catholic Center. Originally from Long Island, New York, she and her husband John have called Durham home since 2004. Ali has a Bachelor’s degree from Cornell University and a Master of City and Regional Planning from UNC-Chapel Hill. When asked how her graduate degree relates to her work at the Duke Catholic Center, Ali explains that she is passionate about building a healthy spiritual community, one with Christ at its core. 

Ali is a cradle Catholic but spent some time away from the church as a college student and young adult. She had a deep conversion experience when she and her family began worshiping at a local Presbyterian church, where she worked for six years in administration and communications. As she continued to follow Christ, she was inspired to reclaim her Catholic faith and is now marveling at all the beauty and richness she previously overlooked. When Ali isn’t busy raising her two spunky teenagers, you'll find her catching up with a friend or digging in her garden.

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Work Study & Summer Internships

Join the team. Serve the Lord. Build your resume.

Work Study

If you qualify for Duke or Federal work study, then these positions will offer great experience in ministry and the non-profit world! 

To apply, visit JobX (DCC positions are listed under Off-Campus WS Jobs), Duke University's Student Employment Portal. If you are interested in learning more about any of these positions, let us know

Apply here.
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Student Directors

Undergraduate and graduate students also serve as Student Directors and Coordinators in the Duke Catholic Center. They are an essential part of every aspect of ministry at Duke. They are responsible for assisting in the development of programs and coordinating student engagement in liturgy, justice and service, intellectual and spiritual formation, and community building. Through serving in their respective ministries, these Student Directors live out the baptismal call, sharing personal gifts and talents within the Duke Catholic community with an eye toward lifelong service to the Church and the world.

Click here to meet them