Pastors and Staff
Mac Schafer, Pastor & Head of Staff
Mac has served as pastor & head of staff at HMPC for 12 years. He has his Doctor of Ministry from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, a Masters of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary and a BA from Elon College in Psychology. He has been a pastor in the Presbyterian Church (USA) for 22 years. He has served congregations in Arizona, New Jersey, Florida and Belfast, Northern Ireland. He is married to Katy (who works at First Presbyterian Church in Raleigh) and they have four children. Mac loves to walk his dog Lawson, work in his yard, read history, tend to his small garden, walk labyrinths, cook pies and breakfast sandwiches and get some form of physical activity into his day. He is a life long learner and a trained spiritual director. Mac has walked the Camino de Santiago three times.
Dr. Debbie Kirk – Associate Pastor for Spiritual Growth and Nurture
Debbie Kirk joined the staff of HMPC in January 2005. She is a native Floridian and as a lifelong Presbyterian grew up spending summers at Montreat, where she regularly attends conferences and retreats. She is a graduate of Maryville College and received her Master of Divinity from Columbia Theological Seminary. She holds a Master of Arts in Christian Education and Doctor of Ministry in Pastoral Theology from Union Presbyterian Seminary. Debbie has served Christian Educator, Associate Pastor, Interim Pastor and Interim Campus Minister. At HMPC she facilitates adult ministry, mission, and congregational care. She has been the Moderator of New Hope Presbytery and the Presbytery Coordinating Body. She served as a Commissioner to General Assembly in 2020 and is a Co-Moderator of the Committee on Preparation for Ministry. Sabbatical time has included journeys to Turkey, Ireland, Jordan, Israel and Italy on biblical and spiritual pilgrimages. For relaxation Debbie enjoys traveling, entertaining with family and friends, walking with her dog, and reading a good book on the beach.
Aleta Ash, Part-time Minister of Visitation
Aleta is a retired pastor and is pleased to be able to assist in providing pastoral care to the Hudson congregation. She served as a chaplain and pastor in Topeka KS and as pastor of Milner Memorial here in Raleigh. She is a graduate of Emory University where she received her BS in nursing. She considers her 22 years as a nurse in public health, geriatrics and hospice as a wonderful preparation for the ministry. She obtained her Masters of Divinity degree from St. Paul School of Theology in Kansas City and has been ordained in the PCUSA for 24 years. She and her husband Ron moved to Raleigh in 2007 and he is a member of Hudson. They have 3 children and 4 grandchildren and enjoy spending as much time with them as possible. Aleta likes to read, walk the greenways, draw and write, eat Ron's wonderful cooking, and loves to laugh. Keep your faith and your sense of humor is her motto.
Rich Richards - Director of Youth Ministries and Children's Music
Rich has served in youth, recreation, music and creative arts ministries in the Presbyterian Church (USA) for over 25 years. He has written curricula for Montreat Youth Conferences, online devotions for “ d365” and was the author of the 2010 and co-author of the 2013 Presbyterian Youth Triennium (PYT) Small Group Manual. Rich has the “Theology in Youth Ministry” certificate from Princeton Theological Seminary and holds degrees in music and art history from The College of Wooster, The Cleveland Institute of Music and the Hochschüle für Musik in Munich, Germany. He enjoys rowing, cycling, cooking, painting and hanging out with his son, Olsen and wife, Lindsey.
Cary Dickerson - Director of Children and Family Ministries
Cary is originally from Indiana, but has called North Carolina home for more than 25 years. She graduated from NC State with degrees in psychology and criminology. She has taught at Hudson Memorial Preschool for the past 7 years. She and her husband Daniel have been members of Hudson since 2009. During this time she has served on Session, the Mission Committee, Children’s Committee, and coordinated VBS for the past several years. She and Daniel have three children: Kessler, Kate, and James. In her free time she enjoys watching football, volunteering, and spending time with her family and their dog Twyla.
Barbara Loehr-Fox - Director of Music Ministries
Barbara is a native Floridian who has served churches in Illinois, New York, Mississippi and South Carolina. She started her church ministry as both a musician and Christian Educator. She holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Voice Performance from the University of Florida and a Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting from the University of Illinois. For over 30 years, Barbara has enjoyed making music with children, youth and adults in both sacred and secular venues. In her spare time, she enjoys travelling, throwing pots, playing with her 2 little rescue dogs and spending time with her husband, Winter.
Amy Claprood - Business Administrator
Amy is the newest addition to the HMPC staff, but she has a long career in church office work in Wake and Johnston counties, as well as in her native state of Ohio. Holding a degree in Communication from Ohio University, Amy started her career in radio before transitioning to full-time mom. Re-entering the workforce, Amy spent years building up her administrative skills; she is excited to put them to good use serving the people of Hudson. When Amy is not coordinating chaos or herding cats in the office, she enjoys spending time with her two adult children. She is also looking forward to traveling more and experiencing a new stage in life.
Lesley Ash Jacobsen - Communications Specialist
In addition to her role at HMPC doing communications, Lesley has been a freelance illustrator, animator, and graphic designer since 2004. She holds degrees in fine art from the University of Cincinnati and Hastings College and was an Artist-in-Residence in Budapest, Hungary. Before relocating to Raleigh in 2020, she lived in New York City and worked in the fashion industry for 15 years. Her and her husband are members of Hudson, and she sings in the Hudson choir.
Sue Newton - Interim Pianist
Sue has been involved with accompanying in church since she was 14 years old, starting at her hometown church in Oxford, NC. She later served at Greystone Baptist Church in Raleigh for 14 years, where working with Pepper Choplin afforded her the opportunity to accompany several of his choirs at Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center. She has also “filled in” for pianists/accompanists at several area churches, and is the accompanist for the senior adult choir at Trinity Baptist.
A graduate of Meredith College with a Bachelor of Music (Music Education), Sue taught private piano lessons for a short time. She also worked at NC Farm Bureau Insurance at their home office, and after almost 38 years, retired as Operations Division Manager in 2015.
She and her husband, Mike, have been married for 36 years. They enjoy traveling, cooking, and spending time with friends and family.
Hope Parangi - Church Hostess
Hope grew up in Ridgefield Park N.J. where she was a member of the First Presbyterian Church. She transferred her membership to Hudson shortly after moving to Raleigh in 1995. She and her husband Max have two daughters and 1 son. She is a Deacon, and active with promoting and taking care of the labyrinth. Hope had worked for many years in the Hudson Memorial Preschool. Hope has continued to enjoy working with children and has been employed at Highland Childrens Center for the past 5 years. She has her Teaching Credentials thorough NCDCDEE from Hayward Community College.
Dorothy Roche - Preschool Director
Dorothy is a Raleigh native, raised right here in North Hills and graduated from Elon College, now known as Elon University. She has worked in early childhood development in various roles since 2003. Dorothy has a "hands on" style and loves interacting with the children, families and teachers. In her free time Dorothy loves to cook, read, listen to podcast and spend time with her family.
Joyce Hawkins - Preschool Assistant Director
Joyce Hawkins joined the HMPC family as Assistant Preschool Director in February 2002. Joyce grew up in Malaysia, and graduated from Purdue University. Joyce and her husband, Jeff, have a daughter and son.