John H. Cluver


Partner & Director of Historic Preservation

John H. Cluver, AIA, LEED AP, began at VMA in 1994. As director of the firm’s preservation studio, he has worked as architect and preservation consultant on a wide range of projects for educational, commercial, and cultural institutions, including award-winning work at Drexel University, the Bryn Mawr Film Institute, and Philadelphia’s renowned Academy of Music, a National Historic Landmark. 

After receiving his professional degree in architecture from the University of Notre Dame School of Architecture, John received a Certificate in Historic Preservation from the University of Pennsylvania School of Design. He currently serves on the City of Philadelphia’s Historical Commission Architectural Advisory Committee and is active in groups like the Philadelphia Chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art. In 2006, he volunteered with the National Trust for Historic Preservation in New Orleans to complete urgent conditions assessments in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. The American Institute of Architects Philadelphia Chapter honored John in 2008 as Young Architect of the Year. 

John is passionate about supporting an approach to preservation that also incorporates sustainable design: his published articles include “Saving Energy in Historic Buildings” in the Association for Preservation Technology Bulletin and he has also shared his expertise on the topic through presentations for the Preservation League of New York, the Society for College & University Planning (SCUP), and the Association of Physical Plant Administrators (APPA).

Outside the office, John is engaged in the long-term rehabilitation of his 1926 Foursquare house, which he affectionately calls “his hobby” in order to justify the time and money he spends on it.  His interest in leadership, service, and education, in addition to a long-standing enjoyment of camping and related activities, led him to a position as Scoutmaster before he was made member of the Board of the BSA Cradle of Liberty Council and the Chair of the Constellation District Committee. John will take any opportunity to tap into his inner travel agent and help family, friends, or complete strangers plan trips to Italy, which he counts as his favorite place on Earth for its unique combination of culture, geography, architecture, and food (and by food, he really means gelato).