The Rev. John Ander Runkle, R.A., appointed as Cathedral Conservator in 2005, oversaw the preservation and conservation of the Cathedral’s building fabric, as well as managed its fine arts collections. He held the position through June 2010. As an Episcopal priest, he served a number of parishes in Virginia, North Carolina, and Tennessee. As a historical architect, his career represents a devotion to the care and interpretation of architectural and cultural landmarks. From serving as a staff architect at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, to surveying the archaeological sites of medieval Islamic settlements in the Sahara of North Africa, to specializing in church and liturgical design in the Anglican tradition, his architectural experience spans more than twenty-five years.
A articulate writer, Runkle’s book, Searching for Sacred Space: Essays on Architecture and Liturgical Design in the Episcopal Church is a collection of thought-provoking essays that focus on liturgical space and its proper support of common worship. A popular speaker at lectures, conferences and retreats, he teaches at a number of seminaries on the theology of sacred space.
In 1999, Runkle received his Master of Divinity from the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee, preceded in 1984 by a Bachelor of Architecture, with honors, from the University of Tennessee and a Bachelor of Art, magna cum laude, from Mary Baldwin College.
His public service includes contributing membership on the Committee of 100 on the Federal City, the Board of Trustees of the University of the South, the Community Design Commission of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and the Property Committee of the Woodrow Wilson Birthplace and Museum, as well as others.