On Tuesday, Gadsden Mayor Craig Ford announced leadership changes involving management of the city’s finances.
Brandon Phillips has been named finance director to succeed longtime city finance director Lisa Rosser, who retired earlier this year, and Laura Copeland is the city’s new director of revenue.
“These hires are not only good ones, but they were necessary,” said Ford. “Separating the revenue and expense side of the financial ledgers has been needed for a long time and these two leaders are well-prepared to manage their responsible areas of the city’s finances.
Combining Brandon’s experience in Gadsden and Laura’s experience in Jacksonville brings a fresh perspective to how we manage taxpayer dollars in Gadsden.”
Brandon Phillips brings to his new role nearly two decades of accounting and finance experience. His career began in public accounting at McClure, Sewell, and Associates in Gadsden. Prior to becoming Gadsden’s assistant finance director, he served as assistant finance director and interim finance director for the City of Anniston. Brandon is a graduate of West End High School and holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration with an emphasis in accounting from Jacksonville State University. He also attended Gadsden State Community College where he earned an associate’s degree in accounting.
Professionally, Brandon is a member of the Government Finance Officers Association of Alabama. Brandon’s wife Kayla is a local CPA. They have been married for 18 years and have two daughters. They enjoy spending their free time traveling, camping, hiking, and kayak fishing.
Laura Copeland comes to Gadsden from the City of Jacksonville, Ala., where she served 17 years in the finance department. She spent eight years as Jacksonville’s Finance Manager and City Treasurer after serving five years as a finance accountant.
Copeland is a graduate of Pleasant Valley High School and earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting with concentrations in finance and management from Jacksonville State University. Additionally she’s a certified government accounting technician and a certified municipal revenue officer, and also a certified local government professional manager.
Professionally, Copeland is an active member of the Alabama City/County Management Association, Government Finance Officers Association of Alabama, and the Alabama Municipal Revenue Officers Association. She is also a board member for the Women Leading Government organization in Alabama and is an advisor for the Women in Leadership program through the University of North Alabama’s Center for Professional Development.
Copeland enjoys reading and is an amateur photographer. She enjoys spending her spare time ballroom dancing.