Tanner Capps, Miller Summer Youth InstitutePittsburgh Theological Seminary has named Franklin Tanner Capps as director of the Seminary’s Miller Summer Youth Institute. He begins Jan. 10, 2022. Most recently he was the Bruce Scholars Lecturer in the Honors College at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.  

“Dr. Capps brings familiarity with our Miller Summer Youth Institute alongside extensive administrative experience. This calling will allow him to integrate his work in ministry with that of youth advocacy and community organizing as an evolution of his primary training as an educator,” said the Rev. Dr. Asa J. Lee, president and professor of theological formation for ministry.

Prior to his appointment at UNCW, Capps was assistant professor of religious studies at St. Andrews Presbyterian College (Laurinburg, N.C.), where he directed the Honors Program and served as a faculty coordinator for the Gambrell Fellows in Social Justice Internship Program with Caldwell Memorial Presbyterian Church (Charlotte, N.C.). In this role, he was also campus liaison for the Miller Summer Youth Institute.

Additionally, Capps is a ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and has regularly served as a lecturer, adult educator, and supply preacher in his home Presbytery of Coastal Carolina and beyond. Capps recently worked as coordinator of community care and outreach at Trinity Presbyterian Church (Laurinburg, N.C.). There, with a team of lay leaders, he initiated an effort to help the congregation cultivate the tools of community organizing to address some of the most pressing issues in its rural setting. This was made possible through the Montreat Conference Center’s Thriving Congregations Initiative, a two-year, $1M Lilly Endowment funded cooperative curriculum for congregations across North Carolina.

Complementing his work in the church, Capps is the recipient of several fellowships and grants, including a Wabash Center Teaching Fellowship, a co-written Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education (NetVUE) development grant, and a Bridwell Library Visiting Scholars Fellowship at Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University. Capps has held membership in a variety of professional societies, including the Society for the Arts in Religious and Theological Studies (SARTS), Fellowship for Protestant Ethics (FPE), and the Society of Christian Ethics (SCE), where he co-convenes the Reformed Theology and Ethics Interest Group.

As an active researcher and writer, he is preparing his first book-length manuscript on the role of vision and visual culture in early Reformed theology, while also serving as special editor for an issue of the International Journal of Systematic Theology and completing projects on religion and social ethics with Political Theology and the Journal of the American Academy of Religion.

Capps is a graduate of Duke University (Th.D., theology), where he worked extensively with Duke Initiatives in Theology and the Arts (DITA), Westminster Theological Seminary (M.A., religion), and Anderson College (B.A., English and visual art).

Since 1997, The Rev. Dr. Roy F. Miller, Ph.D., and Mrs. Florence Lantz Miller Summer Youth Institute at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary has helped young people consider who God is calling them to be and what God is calling them to do through the summer academy, mission experiences, college internships, and youth staff training.