Posted by: Duke Raleigh Hospital | February 9, 2022

Donovan Waller finds joy through educating others

​​​​​​​​​Donovan Waller, MDiv, is a clinical pastoral education supervisor at Duke Raleigh Hospital.

February is Black History Month. Duke Health is celebrating team members who exemplify our values by sharing what Black History month means to them. To show your support, download a Zoom background​.

1. Can you explain your role at Duke?

I am a chaplain educator of residents and interns at Duke Raleigh Hospital. I teach them how to provide emotional and spiritual support to patients, families and staff through the action-reflection process model of education. Additionally, I help develop future chaplains and those involved in ministerial or spiritual roles in their respective faith traditions.

2. What inspired you to choose this career path?

I’ve always had a passion for helping people, which led me to chaplaincy but being an educator combined my passions for theology and the social sciences with my passion for teaching. It felt like a natural fit to become a chaplain educator.

3. What does Black History Month mean to you? 

Black History month is the acknowledgment and appreciation of what Black people have meant to this country and how they have impacted this country in many powerful ways. It is a time to pause, reflect, appreciate and highlight what African Americans have achieved. 

4. Understanding that you’ve likely had people from a variety of different backgrounds who’ve made an impact on you – who comes to mind for you when you think about Black History Month?

When I think of Black History Month, it is natural to think of people like Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, Kathleen Cleaver, Medgar Evers, Rosa Parks and Maya Angelou. However, I think of my grandmother and the legacy of love and integrity that she taught me. She also taught me how to enjoy life.

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