Doctor of Pastoral Music: Student Profiles

David Anderson

David Anderson (2020 Cohort)

David Anderson serves as Director of Music at Ascension Catholic Church in Oak Park, Illinois. At the parish, he serves as the principal organist and directs the four parish choirs. In addition to his liturgical music duties, he coordinates several of the parish’s adult spirituality and ecumenical outreaches, such as, the weekly ecumenical Christian meditation group, small faith groups and retreat days throughout the year. In 1992 he established and continues to direct and coordinate a monthly prayer in the spirit of Taizé bringing together Christians from many different traditions.

David is Editor-at-Large for GIA Publications, Inc., after having also served as Vice-President for Church Music. He continues to work on various hymnal committees (Gather 3rd edition, RitualSong 1st and 2nd edition, and both editions of Singing Our Faith, GIA’s hymnal for children) and projects related to the Taizé Community.

David holds a Bachelor of Music and Master of Church Music from Concordia University, Chicago. Additional post- graduate studies in vocal pedagogy and choral conducting were taken at Westminster Choir College, Princeton. Having just completed a Master of Liturgy and Ministry at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago, (2020) he looks forward to beginning the doctoral program at Perkins/SMU.
David was drawn to the DPM program for its emphasis on ecumenism, and missional outreach through the integrated practice of liturgical theology and pastoral music.

David Anderson

Bryan Black (2020 Cohort)

Bryan Black has worked as a church musician, arts advocate, and community music director in metro Atlanta for twenty-six years. He is presently the Director of Worship Arts (Organist/Choral Music) at North Avenue Presbyterian Church and conductor of the Georgia Symphony Orchestra Chorus based in Marietta. He has prepared choirs of all ages for denominational events, professional conferences, NPR broadcasts, the Piccolo Spoleto festival, and concert tours across Europe and Scandinavia.

Bryan is a past-president of Georgia ACDA and beginning his second term as the National Chair for Music in Worship. Most recently, he designed the sacred music track and worship service for the 2019 national ACDA conference in Kansas City and will oversee plans for the 2021 conference in Dallas. His article “Please Observe the Rest: Self-Care for the Church Musician” appeared in the July 2018 Choral Journal and he also contributed several entries for Tim Sharp’s recent book, “Sacred Choral Music Repertoire: Insights for Conductors” published by GIA.

He holds degrees from Samford University (BM church music), Florida State University (MM choral conducting), and the ZDaF, a German language certificate from the Goethe-Institut in Berlin. Bryan finds his greatest joy in helping others find their voice, rejoicing in the God who gives creation voice, and sharing life in true community through music and reconciliation. The challenge and encouragement offered through the DPM program is a long-anticipated hope for deeper learning and more effective leadership in the church and community.
David Anderson

Dirk Damonte (2017 Cohort)

As an ordained Deacon in Full Connection in the UMC, and having served the church in various capacities for more than three decades, this degree program came along at exactly the right time! When I read the words “vocational renewal of practicing and experienced church musicians” describing this degree on the website, I knew this was the answer to prayer. Entering into the last decade (or so) of ministry, I was seeking such renewal, and also seeking some way of articulating that synthesis between pastoral ministry and music and worship ministry. My experience has taught me over and over again that they are intimately related, and cannot be separated. This degree affirms that. I am looking forward to the renewal, the inspiration, the expanding of my worldview, and the honing of my skills that this program offers.Dirk Damonte
Minister of Music and Worship Arts
Los Altos United Methodist Church

Daniel Dangca (2021 Cohort)

Daniel Dangca is the Senior Coordinator for Liturgical Life in the Office of Mission & Ministry at Gonzaga University.He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music from Loyola Marymount University, a Master of Music degree with a Choral Conducting emphasis from Western Oregon University (2013) and holds an M.A. in Theology and Leadership from Gonzaga University (2021).

Daniel’s has been a liturgical music minister for the last 15 years since he was seventeen and full-time for the last eight years. He has worked in parishes as well as schools up and down the West Coast serving in his home Diocese of San Jose, Archdiocese of San Francisco, Archdiocese of Los Angeles and most recently, the Archdiocese of Portland. His last posting before moving to Spokane, WA was as Director of Music Ministry and Sacred Liturgy at St. Pius X Catholic Church in Portland, OR where he served for four years.


Proud son of a Registered Nurse and Naval Officer, he never forgets his Filipino-American roots that have brought him to where he is today.A Classically trained Baritone, Daniel has sung for the Operafestival di Roma company as well as a chorister at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, Italy. He has also had the opportunity to record for GIA Publications and Oregon Catholic Press.

As of this post, in his spare time, Daniel enjoys: reading up on current events/politics, being an amateur polygot, watching sporting events, being the occasional foodie, being active through health/fitness and is currently working on his Pilates certification. Daniel also volunteers and has been a two-time donor for the Be the Match – Bone Marrow Registry Program. Daniel looks forward to adding more hobbies to this list and making new colleagues during his DPM journey at Perkins.

Hillary J. Doerries (2017 Cohort)

Hillary currently serves as the Director of Music Ministries at Christ the King Lutheran Church (ELCA) in South Bend, Indiana, where she is also the Organist and Arranger-in-Residence for the University of Notre Dame Children’s Choir. While music will always be her first love, she is a fervent advocate for mental health and wellness. After years of navigating through her own journey with mental illness, she is committed to further exploring the healing connections between the music of the Church and her peoples’ path toward hope and wholeness. Through the Doctorate of Pastoral Music program at the Perkins School of Theology, she hopes to gain a better understanding of her role as a pastoral minister while examining how she might utilize her gifts as a church musician to bring the Church into deeper connection with the lost, the helpless, and the poor in spirit.

Hillary, a native of Indianapolis and a proud Hoosier, is a graduate of the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music (BM Organ Performance, 2007, BM Vocal Performance, 2007, MM Organ and Church Music, 2011). She has also taken classes in Biblical Studies and Liturgy at the University of Notre Dame.

Hillary J. Doerries
Director of Music Ministries
Christ the King Lutheran Church
17195 Cleveland Road, South Bend, Indiana 46635
(574)-272-4306 |

Nicole Gray (2019 Cohort)

Nicole Gray, Director of Worship Arts and Music at Dickinson First United Methodist Church, has been serving as a worship arts director for over 11 years. Known for her ability to create unique worship experiences utilizing all the arts, Nicole has written, created and directed multiple thematic worship services, works, musicals and concerts to further enhance the worshipping community at Dickinson First. With a strong love for the big picture, she utilizes her visual arts teams, writers and thespians in addition to music to bring liturgy to life.
She hopes to continue building the Dickinson First worship community by acquiring more avenues for people to serve in the arts. She hopes her participation in the Doctor of Pastoral Music program provides a new outlook on community building, cross-culture programming, and bigger picture projects. Also, she would love to gain the expertise to become a consultant for other churches to help them discover their artistic talents in their fullness to enhance their worship. Additionally, she serves on the Worship Committee for the TX Annual Conference. When not directing the choir, or jamming with the band, Nicole loves hanging out with her two boys and husband, loving life.
She holds a Bachelor of Music (Vocal Performance) from Baldwin-Wallace University and a Master of Music (Vocal Performance) from the University of Houston.

M. Roger Holland, II (2021 Cohort)

M. Roger Holland, II   is a Teaching Assistant Professor in Music and Religion and Director of The Spirituals Project at the Lamont School of Music, University of Denver. A graduate of Union Theological Seminary (New York City) where he received the Master of Divinity degree, Roger also served as Artist-in-Residence and director of the Union Gospel Choir for over 13 years. In 2015 Union awarded him the Trailblazers Distinguished Alumni Award, the first given to a graduate whose ministry is music, for his contributions to the legacy of African American music. He received a Master’s Degree in Piano Performance from the Manhattan School of Music (New York City), and completed his undergraduate work at Westminster Choir College (Princeton, New Jersey) where he majored in Music Education with a concentration in piano and voice.


Roger is the newly appointed editor of the choral series In Spirit and Truth published by GIA Publications, Inc., which focuses on Black Catholic offerings.   Commissioned works include The Dream and The DreamerThe Tribulation Suite, and The Call. Original music collections published by GIA include Building Up the Kingdomfeaturing the single “Worthy God,” and his recent collection, Honey from the Rock, Vol. 1–4 He has played for the Broadway productions of Oprah Winfrey’s The Color Purple and the Tony award winning show Memphis. In November 2016 Timothy Cardinal Dolan of the Archdiocese of New York presented Roger with the Pierre Toussaint Medallion for service.  

Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan (2020 Cohort)

Michael currently serves as Minister of Worship at Cityview Bible Church in Round Rock, Texas. He relocated from his native town of Richmond, Virginia to Texas in November 2011. In June 2011, Michael married Alicia Peters-Jordan and she joined him in Texas where they both serve as leaders in Music, Worship and Fine Arts Ministry.

Michael was educated in the Richmond Public School system and moved on to pursue an undergraduate and graduate education. Michael is a proud alumnus of Hampton University (BA Music Education, 2005) and Liberty University (MA Worship Studies, 2009). While Michael did not intend to pursue any formal degrees beyond his Master of Arts, his colleagues and mentors urged him to consider doctoral studies. The Doctoral of Pastoral Music degree program was suggested, then researched, and ultimately became Michael's next pursuit. The title of the DPM degree program was the initial attraction, but while researching the offered core, concentration, and elective courses, Michael was convinced that this educational journey would provide the necessary tools to heighten his effectiveness in his current vocation, expose him to other opportunities, and equip him to enlighten and educate others in his field of service.

Embarking on this DPM journey is frightening and exciting for Michael. Yet, he trusts that the training, exposure, networking, and nurture of the Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University and the grace, guidance, and goodness of God will provide a lifetime of victories.

Yvette Lau (2019 Cohort)

After obtaining her first and second bachelor degrees in Translation and Chinese (HKPU), and Music (CUHK) respectively and worked in music related work in the government and later in the church in Hong Kong, Yvette Lau furthered her study at Calvin Theological Seminary for M. A. in Worship (2008-2010). She served as a worship pastor in Hong Kong for several years after her graduation at Calvin. She also served as one of the executive committee members of the Hong Kong Hymn Society from 2011-2017. In 2017, she founded Anabas Ministry which is an organization for worship renewal and started to work as a freelancer for worship related ministries including consultancy work. Her passion lies in choral conducting, song writing, hymn translation from English to Cantonese (main translator for New Youth Hymns), event organization, translation of books on worship including The Art of Worship, Beyond the Worship Wars, The Worship Architect and Glory to God, and training and teaching on worship etc. She has been the guest instructor on Worship for Alliance Bible Seminary, China Graduate School of Theology, Bethel Bible Seminary and Hong Kong Baptist Theological Seminary. She has served at the Worship Committee for the CMA Church Union of HK since 2006.

In the search of opportunities for further studies, God led her way to DMP at Perkins. Her prayer is to be challenged and be more equipped so that she can discern with a pastoral heart what is best for the local churches in her context for the glory of God through liturgy, music and other art forms.

Yvette Lau
Chief Executive
Anabas Ministry

Megan Mash (2019 Cohort)

Megan Mash has been serving as the Music Minister at Sebastian United Methodist Church since 2010. Megan was hired to use music as a tool for outreach into the community of Sebastian. She has done this by starting a summer music camp that now is comprised of three weeks throughout the summer that are designed for ages 5-17, creating and sustaining a missional concert series and directing multiple intergenerational ensembles. Megan is passionate about worship design and congregational song. She is most looking forward to renewal in her work through the Doctorate of Pastoral Music. Studying music and theology together is something important to her and it continues to enhance how she perceives and executes her role as a church musician. She hopes to gain new perspectives to enhance her work in planning liturgy. Megan is also seeking new ideas about how to further engage her community in spiritual growth with her colleagues.

Megan earned a Bachelor of Arts in music and religion from Simpson College in Indianola, IA. She earned a Masters of Sacred Music with a concentration in organ from SMU. She is an active member in The Hymn Society, American Guild of Organists and Choristers Guild.

Cristen Mitchell (2019 Cohort)

Cristen Mitchell is the Director of Music Ministries at Blacksburg United Methodist Church in Blacksburg, VA. There she oversees the music ministry of the entire congregation and directs the Chancel Choir, Convergence Worship Band, Early Service Ensemble, WOW Children’s Choir, and Wesley Singers at the Virginia Tech Wesley Foundation. She is an assistant director for the Blacksburg Children’s Chorale, and the president and co-creator of the professional young adult choir The Voices of Appalachia.

Cristen felt a strong calling towards music ministry at young age, but her family encouraged her to pursue other paths. However, Cristen could not deny this call and eventually devoted her college career to Music education and working in music ministry. She’s excited to begin a new journey towards the Doctor of Pastoral Music degree at SMU and apply what she’ll learn in her community in Virginia.

Cristen holds a Master of Music in Choral Conducting from James Madison University, a Bachelors of Music in Music Education from Radford University, and a Church Music Certificate from Virginia Wesleyan College. She will take her Chancel Choir to Carnegie Hall next spring to sing with Mid-America Productions. Previously, the Director of Music Ministries at Tinkling Spring Presbyterian Church, she took their Chancel Choir to Carnegie Hall to sing Appalachian Winter with Joseph Martin and Bluegrass Band, Dailey and Vincent. Cristen has been a soloist on stage at the Lincoln Center in NYC and is the 2018 recipient of the John & Mary Virginia Foncannon Choral Conducting/Sacred Music Scholarship and the 2019 recipient of the John & Mary Virginia Foncannon Conducting/Coaching Scholarhip.

Alan Moser (2020 Cohort)

Halfway through his seventh decade, and in his third career, Alan is the Director of Music at St. James’ Episcopal Church, Mount Vernon in Alexandria, Virginia, where he has served since Epiphany, 2013. Prior to becoming a professional church musician, Alan served 26 years in the U.S. Navy, retiring as a captain in 2004. He subsequently worked in the defense industry, and then returned to school to obtain degrees in organ performance and in church music. Although his prior careers were not music-related, his lifelong love of church music was always close at hand. Throughout his naval career, he also found time to sing in church choirs and community choruses wherever he was stationed, and occasionally to serve as an organist.

After retiring from the defense industry, he was encouraged to study music more in depth and was called to his current position.
After completing his master’s degree in church music at Shenandoah University, Alan learned about the newly created DPM program at SMU. For him, the program is a practical balance between academia and performance, and emphasizes the importance of the church musician as a minister, not only to the musicians in the parish, but also to the community as a whole. He hopes build on his experiences in the DPM program - the academic learning as well as the shared wisdom of his professors and classmates - to enable making the best use of available resources to present a program of church music to the glory of God, both in the parish, and beyond the St. James’ walls.

Alan is a native of Tulsa, Oklahoma, and grew up in Houston. He and his wife reside in Springfield, Virginia. He is an Industrial Engineering graduate of Texas A&M University, and studied Operations Research at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. He obtained a degree in organ performance from Northern Virginia Community College, and a Master’s of Music in Church Music from Shenandoah University.

Stanton Nelson (2017 Cohort)

Stanton Nelson, Assistant Director of Music at Highland Park United Methodist Church (HPUMC), has been serving as a music minister for 12 years. Known for his compositional talents, Stanton has written hymns and service music for his congregations in order to better cohere the liturgy in each worship service. Growing up Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and currently receiving a Master of Divinity from The King’s University (International Church of the Foursquare Gospel), he strives to write music and texts which are unifying and ecumenical.

He hopes to strengthen the Cox Chapel worship community at HPUMC by acquiring more insight in worship planning and liturgics in the Doctor of Pastoral Music program. Additionally, he aspires to build relationships with foster care families in the DFW metroplex and enhance both the Cox Chapel congregation’s worship and the lives of foster care children through his doctorate practicum. Between researching and reading for classes, Stanton enjoys doting on his three nieces and creating his own compositional albums.

He holds a Bachelor of Music (Piano Performance) from the University of Kansas and a Master of Music (Collaborative Piano Performance) from the University of Michigan.

Bryan Page (2020 Cohort)

Bryan Page has been a church musician for 23 years. Having been raised in the Church of Christ, his ecclesial journey has been long and winding, traversing Lutheran and Episcopalian traditions, finally landing him in the Presbyterian Church. He is currently Music Director at Northridge Presbyterian Church in Dallas, TX where he directs adult, teenage, and children’s vocal and handbell choirs. Bryan began his musical career as a trumpeter, and has since studied composition, voice, and conducting, receiving degrees from the University of Montevallo in Alabama and Westminster Choir College in New Jersey. Bryan’s choral music is published by Paraclete Press and his instrumental music by Triplo Press. His greatest musical passion is adding to the diversity and vitality of worship by composing hymns and service music for the church. Bryan and his wife Suzanne have two amazing children, Jack and Sarah Frances. He is thrilled to join the Doctor of Pastoral Music Cohort in 2020 and looks forward to an incredible educational, spiritual, and musical journey.

Dollie Howell Pankey (2017 Cohort)

I am the Reverend Dollie Howell Pankey, a church musician for more than 40 years and a former pastor of 20 years in the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church in Texas and Alabama. My vocational goals include training church musicians and clergy for vocational ministry; employing my gifts as a musician, chaplain, and pastor in a higher education setting; and broadening my reach as singer-songwriter D’ Marie. I chose the Doctor of Pastoral Music program to broaden my access and preparation for teaching positions in practical ministry, as a dean of chapel, and/or as a consultant for congregations or denominational bodies.

Secondly, I aim to strengthen myself as a listener, observer, and interpreter through theological and ethnomusicological lenses so I can better learn from diverse musical and worship cultures. Pastoral music ministry on the broader scale will require me to examine music and worship practices within local congregations across our Connection as well as in other Christian faith traditions and cultures. This means acting as an interpreter (or translator) and integrator of vital worship practices to help congregations engage with God and others in their varied contexts.

Dollie Howell Pankey
Creative Arts Ministry Consultant, Fifth Episcopal District of the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church
Twitter: @DMarieSings
Instagram: @D.Marie.Sings

Darnell St. Romain (2020 Cohort)

Darnell St. Romain is the Associate Director of Liturgical Music at Prince of Peace Catholic Community in Plano, Texas. He has served there since 2013 where directs the Children and Handbell Choirs, as well as assists the Director of Liturgical Music with the Liturgical Choir. Darnell also has a private piano studio of over 20 students from the Prince of Peace Community. Darnell is looking forward to renewal in his vocation as a student in the DPM Program. He hopes to gain fresh perspectives in the pastoral, liturgical, and missiological fields of his vocation. Further, he hopes to engage his church community with new ideas to help them grow spiritually. Darnell holds a Bachelor of Music (Organ Performance) from Louisiana State University, a Master of Master of Music (Organ Performance), and a Master of Sacred Music, both from Southern Methodist University

Darrell St. Romain (2020 Cohort)

Darrell is currently serving as Director of Music at Mary Immaculate Catholic in Farmers Branch, Texas. There he supervises all aspects of the music ministry, directs the Adult Choirs, and serves as principal organist. Darrell has worked in parishes that are multicultural and multilingual in their makeup with the hope that congregants learn to sing each other’s song. Through his studies in the Doctor of Pastoral Music program he hopes to broaden his skills of engaging different communities to worship together and to develop a leadership style that will bring music ministry to the greater needs of the community-at-large.

Darrell holds a Bachelor of Music in Organ Performance from Louisiana State University and a Master of Sacred Music and a Master of Music in Organ Performance from Southern Methodist University.

Carolien Tantra (2021 Cohort)

Carolien Tantra graduated with a Bachelor and Master of Church Music from Singapore Bible College, Singapore. She has served as a music minister in Christ Jesus Church Greenville Congregation in Jakarta, Indonesia, and other churches while pursuing her degrees. Currently she is teaching as a full-time lecturer and coordinator for the church music program at Southeast Asia Bible Seminary (SAAT) in Malang, Indonesia. Her primary subjects are church music and worship. She is also a full-time mom with a four-year-old son in kindergarten. Her husband is currently pursuing a Ph.D. program at Baylor University.


Her favorite Bible verse is Col. 3:16 “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”  Let the music that is a gift from God, be used as a means to serve and edify the people in order for them to grow towards maturing in Christ and to glorify God.  

Lily Wong (2018 Cohort)

I had started my music learning at the age of five. I participated actively in various church music ministries since young age. In year 2002, I furthered my study at the University of Melbourne (Australia). I obtained my first music degree in year 2006. I graduated from Trinity Theological College with Master of Divinity (with Church Music specialization) in 2010. Currently I am serving full time as ministry staff, in charge of music and worship, at Telok Ayer Chinese Methodist Church in Singapore.

I enrolled in the DPM Program to be more equipped, in order to have a better understanding of the worship and church music of this generation, and with this in mind, explore an approach to ministry that is contextualized. Given the increasing influence of trendy music in South East Asian churches, I sense the diminishing effect of liturgical tradition has profound influence and formation in a Christian’s spiritual life. In my eight years of service as music director in the Singaporean local church and Methodist denomination, God has used me to minister to the worshippers and enhance their spiritual formation through the understanding of Christian worship, the practice of worship in daily living, and well-designed worship liturgy and music. I desire to do more for the South East Asian churches. I aim to help believers better appreciate the heritage of liturgical worship through all age groups in the non-western context. Thus, I intend to be equipped further so to enhance my ministry and teaching to the churches in South East Asia.

Lily Wong Kueng Mee
Ministry Staff (Worship & Music)
Telok Ayer Chinese Methodist Church, Singapore