Meet Our New Rector
Tom Deppe grew up in the piney woods of east Texas and excelled in athletics, primarily swimming. He attended the US Naval Academy (1976-1980) where he earned a BS in Political Science and was a Varsity Swimmer. At the Naval War College (1993) he received a Masters in National Security and Strategic Studies, with Distinction. Most recently he graduated from the Seminary of the Southwest in Austin, TX (2000 – 2003) with a Masters in Divinity.
As an F-14A Naval Flight Officer, Tom deployed on various aircraft carriers. He is a graduate of Topgun (1985), served as an Advanced Jet Training Instructor (F-14A) in San Diego (1986-1989), and is a decorated combat veteran (1991, Desert Storm, USS John F. Kennedy, VF-32 Swordsmen, Virginia Beach, VA). He completed a tour on the USS Independence in Japan as the Carrier Strike Operations Officer (1996-1998). Tom attained the rank of Commander and retired after a twenty-year career while serving as the Naval Carrier Power Projection expert for the Air Force at Hurlburt Field, Ft. Walton Beach, FL (1998-2000).
Tom began discernment for ordained ministry in the middle 1990s while a parishioner and vestryperson at Eastern Shore Chapel and was called to attend seminary from St. Christopher Episcopal Church, Pensacola, FL in 2000. He was the curate at St. Paul's Mobile, AL, a corporate size, suburban parish, from 2003-2006. While there, he led outreach ministry, to include: teaching “Spanish for Dummies,” organizing and leading six mission trips to El Salvador, and leading disaster relief trips to the MS gulf coast after Hurricane Katrina. He was called as the 22nd rector of All Saints in 2006.
Tom has been the rector of All Saints Episcopal Church, a happy, vibrant parish, for the past seven years. The church is presently celebrating its 128th year of ministry in Jacksonville and is home to a nationally renowned intergenerational Care Center which serves over 120 children and families from diverse socio-economic conditions, as well as 30 special needs adults. His passions are church stability, restoration, outreach, and growth. He is particularly interested in issues relating to non-violence and ecological sustainability. During his present tenure, through creative fundraising and partnerships with local businesses, the church completed a half million dollar building restoration campaign, while remaining debt free. Under his leadership, All Saints has become recognized in the community for: the fall Seafood Festival, quarterly Interfaith Forums (Muslims, Jews, Christians, and civic leaders), the annual Music through the Ages concert series, the spring Antiques, Art, and Garden Party, and technologically savvy social media and public relations programs. Tom is committed to spiritual and numerical growth through lifelong, hope-filled, Christian formation and ministries tailored toward children, youth, and young families. He presently serves on the Diocese of Florida Standing Committee.
Tom has been happily married to Deborah S. Deppe for thirty-one years and they have three wonderful children: Morgan (27), Kathryn – Kit (25), and Allison (23), as well as two rowdy Australian Shepherds: Simon Peter (7) and Andrew (8 months).
Tom's first Sunday with us will be Pentecost Sunday, May 19. Please join us and welcome our new rector!