John joined VCC as Executive Director in 2020. John has been engaged in fundraising, development, and policy research related to land conservation and battlefield preservation in Virginia and nationally for more than 36 years. Most recently, John directed land acquisition and conservation programs at the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation beginning in 2001. He has protected thousands of acres on Civil War battlefields in the Shenandoah Valley through donation, bargain sale, and fee purchase. Previously, he worked on the staff of Valley Conservation Council and the Western Virginia Land Trust and as a consultant to numerous organizations across the Commonwealth.
John started his career in Washington, D.C. as a fundraising consultant to national nonprofits including the Wilderness Society and American Farmland Trust. He is a graduate of Robert E. Lee High School in Staunton and the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee where he double majored in American history and American literature. He also received a master’s degree in urban and environmental planning with a certificate in historic preservation at the University of Virginia in 2000 and attended Mary Baldwin College and Saint John’s College in Oxford, England. He is President of the Virginia Wilderness Committee and Treasurer of the Virginia Conservation Network. He resides in Staunton with his wife Beth.