On November 5, 2015, The General Theological Seminary celebrated Dr. David Hurd's 39 years of service at a special Evensong which was part of the annual Alumni Gathering. During Evensong, Dean and President, the Very Rev. Kurt H. Dunkle presented Dr. Hurd with the Clement Clarke Moore Medal. Hurd is a native New Yorker who attended both the High School of Music and Art and the Juilliard School before graduating as an organ major at Oberlin College. His principal graduate work was undertaken in organ performance at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He has served as Assistant Organist of Trinity Church and St. Paul's Chapel, and as Director of Music at the Church of the Intercession, All Saints Church, and Church of the Holy Apostles, all in Manhattan. He joined General Seminary as the Director of Chapel Music in 1976 and was appointed Professor of Church Music and Organist in 1984, with tenure granted in 1987. Hurd is the recipient of honorary doctorates from four Episcopal seminaries.
World-renowned for his composition and organ-playing, Hurd is the recipient of many awards and performance prizes, including ones for improvisation. In 1981, he was invited to perform at the Internationaal Orgelfestival Haarlem, during which he received a diploma for improvisation from the Stichting Internationaal Orgelconcours. He has played concerts around the world for more than 30 years and has been a judge for local, national and international competitions in the areas of organ performance, improvisation and composition. Hurd has penned dozens of compositions, including many in The Hymnal 1982 of The Episcopal Church. His extensive catalogue of musical compositions emphasizes organ and choral works, and his liturgical works are published and known internationally and ecumenically.
Hurd has had an undeniable influence throughout the world, in the Church and at General Seminary. His 39 years of service at General left an indelible mark on generations of students, equipping each with the tools and sphere of knowledge that prepare a graduate from General for ministry in the wider world. His contributions to chapel life are unmatched in the Seminary’s history and brought a profound beauty to corporate worship at General Seminary.