Warren Copeland is Professor of Religion and Director of Urban Studies at Wittenberg University in Springfield, Ohio. He received the highest award for teaching at Wittenberg, the Alumni Association’s Distinguished Teaching Award, in 1995. In 2008, he was named the Faculty Director of Wittenberg’s Center for Civic and Urban Engagement. He is the author of two books in religious social ethics and co-editor of a third. Economic Justice and Issues of Justice (co-editor) appeared in 1988. And the Poor Get Welfare was published in 1994.
He was appointed to the Springfield City Commission in 1988; he won election in 1989, reelection in 1993, 1997, and 2001. He served as mayor from 1990 to 1994 and from 1998 until the present. In 2003, he became the first person elected mayor directly by the voters since 1914. He was reelected Mayor in 2007, 2011, 2015, and 2019.
He was the editor and primary author of Updating the Dream, a major study of Springfield, in 1997. His ethical reflections on his time in Springfield City Government, Doing Justice in Our Cities: Lessons in Public Policy from America’s Heartland, appeared in the summer of 2009.
Warren has been married since 1965 to Clara Coolman Copeland, a kindergarten teacher. They are the parents of three children and grandparents of seven grandchildren.
Mr. Copeland represents the City Commission on the following boards: