Copeland, a retired religion professor at Wittenberg University, was first elected to the Springfield City Commission in 1988. From there, he was appointed into a variety of city positions until he was selected to serve as mayor by the commission. He was mayor from 1990-94 and then again from 1998-2003. In 2003, once the city moved to direct election of the mayor position, Copeland was elected and has served since.
One of the reasons Copeland said he wanted to seek another term was due to the recent appointment of some officials to Springfield’s government, like City Manager Bryan Heck.
Copeland said he wants to help those new appointees settle into their new roles.
“The reason that I ran was that I thought I still had some contributions to the public that I can make and help the city make,” Copeland said. “I will continue to do that moving forward.”
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Tuesday’s loss was the second for Stegner, who ran against Copeland for Mayor in 2015, where he received 37% of the vote.
Stegner operates the Springfield Soup Kitchen, is a Vietnam War veteran and retired IBM consultant.
Stegner said he believes his campaign was, “extremely positive.”
“I guess my message didn’t get out,” Stegner said. “I want to thank all of my supporters and everyone that worked and volunteered for the campaign. The Lord has better things ahead for me. There must be more important things for me to do.”
Turner, who was born and raised in Springfield, said after the election that she was feeling, “fine.”
“You can’t win if you don’t try,” Turner said.
Turner said she is in the process of writing a book, and her run for mayor will be, “just another chapter.”
“I’m considering it as research. I guess Springfield will have four more years of shade from what they have been dealing with. It’s a sad town for a reason,” Turner said. “People just want to complain about things. They don’t want to do anything.”