David Cooperrider Earns Distinguished University Professor Honor at Case Western Reserve University

David Cooperrider

BURLINGTON, Vt. - Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, honored David L. Cooperrider, a global expert on Appreciative Inquiry (AI) with the Weatherhead School of Management, as a Distinguished University Professor, a title that acknowledges the outstanding contributions of its full-time, tenured professors with a distinguished academic record of extraordinary research, scholarship, teaching and service. Cooperrider was honored as one of four new Distinguished University Professors during Fall Convocation at Severance Hall at Case Western.

Cooperrider has guided the wide acceptance of AI, his strengths-based management technique now widely practiced in business, public service organizations and governments. AI's impact on management and world affairs-as recognized by the United Nations-stems from its ability to enable innovation, sustainable design and transformative change.

In 2014, Champlain College's Robert P. Stiller School of Business in Burlington, Vt., honored Cooperrider's AI work with an academic center in his name, the David L. Cooperrider Center for Appreciative Inquiry. Cooperrider serves as its Honorary Chair from his academic home base at Case Western Reserve.

The David L. Cooperrider Center for Appreciative Inquiry is a Center of Excellence at Champlain College in Burlington, Vermont. The Center was made possible through a generous gift from the Stiller Family Foundation in recognition of the impact of the AI philosophy on the success of the company Robert P. Stiller built, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, now Keurig Green Mountain, Inc. Dedicated in 2014, the Center aims to be the global center of excellence for Appreciative Inquiry, and is focused on three main areas of work:

  • Providing cutting-edge educational offerings in AI and Positive Organizational Development
  • Providing AI-related organizational consultancy services to organizations across all sectors
  • Serving as a knowledge incubator that advances the theory and practice of AI across all organizational sectors around the world.

"David has become a global citizen and AI a global phenomenon," said Laurel Bongiorno, interim dean of the Robert P. Stiller School of Business. "We at Stiller are simply proud to be part of his international following -- every accolade David receives brings honor to all of us. Well done David!"

Said Dr. Lindsey Godwin, director of the David L. Cooperrider Center and Professor of Management in the Stiller School of Business: "Having collaborated with David since I was a doctoral student at Weatherhead, to working with him now to build a global center for Appreciative Inquiry, I can think of no one who deserves this recognition more. David's work has created positive impacts in every organizational sector around the world, but even more importantly, David embodies the appreciative spirit more than anyone I know."

"I have been fortunate to personally see David in his element and experience his many qualities and accomplishments," Weatherhead School Dean Robert E. Widing, Albert J. Weatherhead III Professor of Management, wrote in a nomination letter. "It has been an honor to see first-hand his generosity of spirit, his capacity to inspire and bring out the best in others, his deep and far-ranging intellect and his ability to synergize multiple complex projects aimed at enriching humanity."

Cooperrider has been a leader in changing the mindset of managers to the belief that businesses can excel, people can thrive and nature can flourish. At Case Western Reserve University's Weatherhead School, he is faculty founder of the Fowler Center for Business as an Agent of World Benefit and co-director of the recently established Strategic Innovation Lab.

Cooperrider has served as strategic advisor to a wide variety of businesses, such as Apple, Verizon, Johnson & Johnson, Fairmount Minerals and Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, as well as organizations such as American Red Cross, American Hospital Association, Cleveland Clinic, World Vision and the United Way.

Cooperrider has published 25 books and authored over 100 articles and book chapters. His books include Appreciative Inquiry: A Positive Revolution in Change (with Diana Whitney); The Organization Dimensions of Global Change (with Jane Dutton); Organizational Courage and Executive Wisdom (with Suresh Srivastva) and the four-volume research series Advances in Appreciative Inquiry.

In 2010, Cooperrider was awarded the Peter F. Drucker Distinguished Fellow award from the Drucker School of Management, recognizing his contribution to management thought.


Founded in 1878, Champlain College is a small, not-for-profit, private college in Burlington, Vermont, with additional campuses in Montreal, Canada, and Dublin, Ireland. Champlain offers a traditional undergraduate experience from its beautiful campus overlooking Lake Champlain and over 90 residential undergraduate and online undergraduate and graduate degree programs and certificates. Champlain's distinctive career-driven approach to higher education embodies the notion that true learning occurs when information and experience come together to create knowledge. Champlain College is included in the Princeton Review's The Best 382 Colleges: 2018 Edition. For the third year in a row, Champlain was named a "Most Innovative School" in the North by U.S. News & World Report's 2018 "America's Best Colleges," and an "A+ School for B Students" and is ranked in the top 100 Regional Universities of the North. Champlain is also featured in the Fiske Guide to Colleges for 2018 as one of the "best and most interesting schools" in the United States, Canada and Great Britain and is a 2018 College of Distinction. For more information, visit  www.champlain.edu.