The Reverend Luther Zeigler, Chaplain

Luther comes to the Episcopal Chaplaincy at Harvard from St. Andrew’s Episcopal School in Potomac, Maryland, where for several years he was Senior Chaplain and Chair of the Philosophy and Religion Department. Luther previously served as Chaplain at Washington Episcopal School in Bethesda, Maryland, and taught at the St. Albans School for Boys in Washington, D.C.

A graduate of Oberlin College, Luther holds a master’s degree in Religious Studies, as well as a law degree, from Stanford University.  Luther completed his theological training at Virginia Theological Seminary, from which he received his Master of Divinity degree with honors.

Luther has published widely on topics of theology and education. His essays have appeared in the Anglican Theological Review, Oxford’s Oral History Review, and in the recent anthology, Reasons for Being: The Character and Culture of Episcopal Schools, published by the National Association of Episcopal Schools.

For many years prior to his ordination, Luther practiced appellate law at a major Washington law firm, where he had an active public service practice, particularly in the areas of civil rights and advocating for the homeless. He served on the Board of the Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless and represented a wide range of pro bono clients, including the Children’s Defense Fund, the Volunteers of America, the NAACP, the Georgetown University Sex Discrimination Clinic, as well as numerous other public interest groups and indigent individuals. Luther’s transition from the law to ministry was featured in the April 2013 issue of the American Lawyer.

Luther and his wife, Pat, have two adult daughters, one of whom lives and works in the San Francisco Bay Area and one of whom lives and works in Boston. During the summer months, Luther serves as the Minister of Emmanuel Church in Manchester-by-the-Sea, on the North Shore of Massachusetts.

Olivia Hamilton, Kellogg Fellow

Olivia is a recent graduate of Harvard Divinity School, where she completed her Master of Divinity degree in May. Originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, she received her B.A. from Hunter College in New York City, majoring in comparative religion. At HDS, Olivia enjoyed serving as the seminarian at the Church of the Good Shepherd in Watertown, and before that, as the chaplain intern at VNA Hospice of Cambridge. A member of St. James’s Porter Square, Olivia was confirmed in the Episcopal Church in Spring of 2013. She is particularly passionate about social justice issues, and looks forward to fostering opportunities for the ECH community to live even more fully into its longstanding commitment to social justice. Olivia’s partner Molly is a Nurse Practitioner serving at-risk youth in Boston’s Chinatown neighborhood. Olivia enjoys cooking, poetry, gardening, and going on adventures with her dog Mingus. She is delighted to be serving at ECH this year, and to be embarking on a year of growth, discernment, expanded community, and deepening encounters with our rich faith.

Laura Thorsett, President

Laura is an undeclared sophomore at Harvard living in Currier House. She grew up in Santa Cruz, California, but currently calls Salem, Oregon home. Though her extended family are active Episcopalians, she is fairly new to the church, and she joined the chaplaincy in the fall of 2014. In addition to the chaplaincy, Laura is a member of the Kuumba singers and tutors with PBHA. She is looking forward to the next year of fun and growth at ECH!



Nicholas HayesMr. Nicholas Hayes, Organist

Nicholas graduated from Harvard Divinity School with a Master of Divinity in Spring, 2014. Originally from Hillsdale, MI,  he graduated from Harvard College in 2008 with a B.A. in Social Studies. While an undergraduate, he also pursued private music study in organ and harpsichord with Peter Sykes of the Longy School of Music and started playing for ECH. Nicholas’s post-collegiate years led him first to Argentina, then back to Boston for two years of the Episcopal Service Corps (Micah Fellow shout out!). He entered Harvard Divinity School in Fall, 2011, focusing on the intersection of theology, political economy, and practices of social transformation. Raised a Roman Catholic, Nicholas became an (unabashed!) Episcopalian after a loss of faith during his college years. For coming to a new understanding of Christianity and returning to it, he has primarily to thank former ECH chaplain Ben King. Nicholas has served as an organist with the Episcopal Chaplaincy since January of 2006 (absent 2008-2009). In his spare time, he enjoys running, cooking, readng (too much), playing/singing music, and above all, laughing.

Ms. Ruth Roper, Organist

Ruth Roper has worked in Congregational (UCC), Unitarian Universalist, MCC, and American Baptist churches, and was Coordinator of Music and Worship Programs at the Harvard Divinity School, where she received her Masters of Theological Studies.  Her undergraduate degree from SUNY Binghamton was in Music History and Performance, studying organ, piano, flute, and choral conducting.  She has directed or accompanied numerous vocalists and choral ensembles around the Boston area over the past decades, most notably the lively, popular 250+ voice Mystic Chorale.  She has a personal interest in music by women, in revising the language of traditional sacred music to include all people (“inclusive language”), and is a passionate hymn-lover, always eager to share musical, historical, and poetic notes to draw the choir and congregation into the magic of this incredible body of song.

Mr. Christopher Whiteman, OrganistChristopherWhiteman

Christopher Whiteman is a second year MDiv candidate at Harvard Divinity School.  He graduated from Harvard University Extension School in 2013 with an ALB with a concentration in religion.  For thirteen years he was the organist and choirmaster at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Dorchester, MA and the majority of his organ studies were with Dr. David Runner at Milligan College in Tennessee.


The Board of the Episcopal Chaplaincy

The Board of the Episcopal Chaplaincy is made up of alumni and friends of the Chaplaincy. They manage its financial affairs and help direct its mission. This year’s board includes:

Prof. Adrian Vermeule, President
The Rev. Dr. Edith W. Dolnikowski, Vice President
Mr. Jeremy Siegfried, Treasurer
Ms. Jenny Wolahan, Clerk
Prof. John A.E. Pottow
Prof. Richard Parker
Mr. Christopher Kaneb
Ms. J. Carey Bloomfield
The Rev. William P. Billow, Jr.
Prof. Richard Thomas
Ms. Alice Kenney
Rev. Margery Kennelly


The Rev. Joseph O. Robinson (ex officio)
The Rt. Rev. Alan M. Gates (ex officio)