The Rev. Jack Koepke

Please reflect on your participation in the life of your congregation, the diocese, and the larger community:

I was called to the Diocese of Southern Ohio from the Diocese of Washington (DC) in 1997 to serve as the Rector of St. Paul’s, Dayton. While there, I also served as the Chair of the Commission on Ministry of the Diocese for nearly ten years. In the wider (“national”) Episcopal Church, I was a member of the Church Deployment Board (now the Board for Transition Ministry) for seven years and served as its Chair from 2003- 2006. In the Dayton community, I have served as a Trustee of the Miami Valley Hospital, a member of the Board of Directors of Dayton Habitat for Humanity, and as a Trustee of Dayton Public Radio.

Bishop Breidenthal invited me to serve as Canon to the Ordinary in 2011. Much of that ministry and my efforts were devoted to strengthening and supporting congregations – particularly through the COCL – and in working with individual clergy, Vestries and congregational leaders by offering training, leadership development, conflict resolution, organizational support and consultation. At the Bishop’s invitation, I also regularly attended meetings and provided staff support to Diocesan Council, the Standing Committee, and the Trustees of the Diocese.

I retired from active ministry in October 2018. In addition to enjoying more time with family and friends, I occasionally serve as a supply priest, lead Vestry retreats and offer consultation to clergy and Vestries. I currently serve on the Board of Directors of Episcopal Retirement Services in Cincinnati, the Episcopal Church Home in Louisville, and I am a Volunteer Mediator at the Dayton Mediation Center.

Why do you feel God is calling you to serve in this position?

Several colleagues encouraged me to consider standing for election for Trustee of the Diocese as one way of continuing to serve the Church and Diocese of Southern Ohio. My experience as Rector and as a member of the Bishop’s staff includes extensive experience serving in a fiduciary and/or governing role of organizations of varying size and complexity. As mentioned above, I attended meetings of the Trustees of the Diocese while I was the Canon to the Ordinary, so I have a reasonably good idea about the nature and scope of the Trustees’ role and responsibilities, the processes and procedures by which those responsibilities are executed, and the challenges the Trustees face in exercising their ministry.

I can bring to the Trustees my commitment to theologically responsible investment and asset management as well as a proclivity to ask the “why” questions: “Why are we considering this? Why will this action further the mission of the church and the diocese? Why only consider this particular action; is there a better way?” I try hard to think systemically – that is, to think through how a decision or action made by one committee or board will impact the rest of the organization. I am also quite comfortable working with balance sheets, P and L’s, budgets, investment strategies, and the like. I actually find them interesting!

The ever-changing environment in which we who follow Jesus now live offers the Church significant new and yet to be discovered opportunities for mission. In that light, theologically informed, creative, and faithful stewardship of the abundant resources God has entrusted to us has never been more essential. The Trustees of the Diocese have and continue to exercise that stewardship very well. I’d be honored to have the opportunity to join in their work and ministry.