Susan Hartzell

The Very Rev. Susan Hartzell was formally installed as our rector in October 2018, after serving as our Priest-in- Charge from 2016-2018. She joined St. Peter’s in the Woods as the Associate Rector in 2013. She serves as Dean of the South Fairfax Region in the Diocese of Virginia, and has also represented the region as a member of the Executive Board.

A collaborative leader, Rev. Susan is energized by helping people encounter Jesus through prayer, worship and service.  She has a diverse background in government, business and the church, and brings a passion for preaching and teaching, building vibrant faith communities that seek to serve God in the world, and helping folks share their faith journey along the way. She is continually amazed by how God works with and through each of us to transform lives.

A love of children’s ministries and worship that meets people where they are prompted her discernment and path to ordination.  She graduated from Virginia Theological Seminary with a Master of Divinity degree in May of 2013 and was ordained to the priesthood in September of that year. Prior to entering seminary, Rev. Susan worked in corporate communications and public relations. Her varied career includes serving as a press secretary in the Massachusetts State House, working as a litigation attorney for the City of New York, spending time as a stay-at-home mom and launching a catering business.

She earned her J.D. from Suffolk University Law School and her Bachelor’s degree from Emerson College in Boston. She and her husband Peter have two college-age daughters. She enjoys spending time with her family, going for walks with her dogs, cooking and reading.