WASHINGTON Richard Bland has been hired as Washington National Cathedral’s new chief operating officer, effective October 9, a role in which he will oversee all public-facing operations and work to deepen the Cathedral’s mission as an agent of reconciliation, a trusted voice of moral leadership, and a sacred space where the country gathers during moments of national significance.

Bland currently serves as COO at the Faith and Politics Institute in Washington, D.C. and has nearly 25 years’ experience as a leader at organizations which bring together faith and public life.

“I am excited to welcome Rich to our team and to see what we can build together,” said the Very Rev. Randolph ‘Randy’ Marshall Hollerith, dean of Washington National Cathedral. “Rich is a man of quiet, but sustaining faith, a man who is passionate about this Cathedral’s mission and ministry, a man who possesses excellent management and leadership skills, and a man of gentle humor and insightful wisdom.”

Bland has extensive experience leading publicly engaged faith-based organizations, including prior governance roles with Washington National Cathedral. For nearly a decade, Bland has served the Cathedral: first as a member of the Cathedral Chapter and committee chairman, and more recently as a board member for the Protestant Episcopal Cathedral Foundation and committee chairman. In his current role as COO at the Faith and Politics Institute, he works to build bridges and inspire political leaders to reflect and engage with one another for the good of the nation.

“The Cathedral is the institution closest to my heart, and I feel blessed to be called to help lead it into an exciting future,” Bland said. “The Cathedral has so much to offer – to our city, our nation and the faith community at large. I look forward to being a vital part of establishing a firm foundation for its second century of ministry.”

Bland’s background and experience combine faith-based work and public life in a way that makes him ideally suited for his new role at the Cathedral. Previously, he helped lead Save the Children, the YMCA and Sojourners, and he also served for many years in various roles on Capitol Hill. He holds a Masters of Theological Studies from Harvard University, a Juris Doctor from the University of Virginia, and a BA, Summa Cum Laude, from Bowdoin College.


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Washington National Cathedral is dedicated to serve as a house of prayer for all people and a spiritual home for the nation. It seeks to be a catalyst for spiritual harmony in our nation, reconciliation among faiths, and compassion in the world. Learn more »


Tony Franquiz, West End Strategy Team
[email protected], (202) 374-5393