Illustrative image for Remembering the Reverend Frank Geer

Hastings Center News

Remembering the Reverend Frank Geer

The Hastings Center is saddened by the passing of the Rev. Francis (Frank) Hartley Geer, who served on the Hastings board from 2010 to 2020. He died on July 19 at home in Plymouth, Ma.

The Rev. Geer was rector of St. Philip’s Episcopal Church in Garrison, N.Y., down the road from The Hastings Center, from 1987 until his retirement in 2018.

“Within the first weeks of my presidency, Rev. Geer suggested that I give a sermon at his church,” says President Emerita Mildred Solomon, who served as Hastings Center president from 2012 until June of this year. “I was tremendously honored and not a little frightened by what I thought would be a daunting challenge. With his steady hand and friendly persistence, I crafted a sermon that explained what we do at Hastings and how our mission, though deeply secular, shares goals the church has too.

“Frank was prescient–it was a great experience for me but more importantly a wonderful way to introduce me to the community and to deepen the local community’s interest in Hastings’ work. Frank continued on our board for many years, offering sound guidance and deep collegiality. It was an honor knowing him, and he will be sorely missed.” 

He was born on March 19, 1948, in Honolulu and raised in Manhattan. He earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Rutgers University and a master’s degree from Church Divinity School of the Pacific.

In addition to being rector of St. Philips, during the 1990’s he was also director of religious services at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospitals in Manhattan. He also served on the New York State Task Force on Life and the Law and the board of Hartley House in Hell’s Kitchen. In 2002, after the 9/11 attacks, he and science writer John Horgan collaborated on a book, Where Was God on September 11?

He is survived by his wife, Sarah, and their children, Samuel Geer (Christina) of Minneapolis and Phoebe Geer (Matthew Speiser) of Garrison; his grandchildren, Mary, Davis, Nathaniel, and Theodore; and his brother, William Geer.