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The Many Connections with Duke

The Many Connections with Duke

Kate Hendricks has been a student, bride, employee and patient at Duke

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Kate Hendricks works in an office in Durham's American Tobacco Campus, where she handles employment law and trademark licensing cases for Duke University and Duke University Health System. Photo by April Dudash

Durham, NC - Name: Kate Hendricks
Position: Deputy University Counsel, Duke Office of Counsel
Years at Duke: 27

What I do at Duke: We handle the legal affairs for Duke University and Duke University Health System, and we all have our various areas of specialty. I deal with employment law and some trademark licensing issues.

If I had $5 million, I would: probably donate to some dog rescue groups like (American) Fox Terrier Rescue. My husband and I, we love dogs and we always have had wire-hair fox terriers, and I am a member of some fox terrier affinity groups and rescue groups.

My first ever job: I was a newspaper carrier for the Jackson, Mississippi, Clarion-Ledger, and I did that for two years before going to college. I delivered the morning paper. It was a neighborhood near my house so I had to get up at 5 in the morning before school and I think there were over 200 deliveries on my route.

My dream job: Naming paint. If you ever go to Lowe’s or Home Depot and you look at paint, there are like 8,000 shades of blue. If you look at the shades of paint, the names have no resemblance to reality, so it’s like free association. How could you go wrong? I once painted my living room the color of ‘Warm Chinchilla.’

The best advice I ever received: ‘If you have to wrestle with pigs, the pig loves it, and you both get dirty.’ In other words, always take the high road when you’re dealing with people and don’t be drawn into gamesmanship or trickery, and do the right thing.

What I love about Duke: The people. It’s everybody from my colleagues here to everyone I encounter during my work at Duke. I work with folks in all departments of the university, from the university to the health system. From time to time, I have to go out to the Marine Lab. I love that Duke has these types of outposts.

When I’m not at work, I like to: My husband and I have a place in Pinehurst, so we spend most weekends down there. I run a lot, we golf and spend time with our dog and try to keep up with our niece and nephews.

If I could have one superpower, it would be: X-Ray vision, being able to see through things. It would just be neat to see what makes something what it is, in a building, to see the structure of a building.

Something most people don’t know about me: I have two talents in this world. One is I’m really good at the jumble in the newspaper, and two, I’m really good at parallel parking.

An interesting/memorable day at work for me: I did get married in the Duke Chapel. That was in 1992. I have a lot of connections to Duke, whether it was having gone to law school here, getting married in Duke Chapel or having surgery here at Duke Hospital. That was a number of years ago. I’ve been a patient, a bride, a student, an employee.

A Book I like: a biography of Walt Disney. It was a well-done biography and I’ve really reflected on the impact Walt Disney had on this country and on the world. (“Walt Disney: The Triumph of the American Imagination” by Neal Gabler)

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