Wally Siewert, Director, Civic Engagement

Director, Civic Engagement & FOCUS Impact Fellows
Tel: (314) 657-4026
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Wally Siewert, Ph.D.

Dr. Wally Siewert has over a decade of experience with civic and political engagement, from the grassroots and applied level to academic analysis and theory. From 2011-2017, Dr. Siewert was the Director of the Center for Ethics in Public Life (CEPL) at the University of Missouri St. Louis. During that time CEPL established itself as a statewide hub for public ethics information, conferences, workshops, research, best practices, legislative tracking, community collaboration and more. 

Prior to arriving in St. Louis in 2011, Wally earned his Ph.D. in political philosophy and ethics from the University of California Santa Barbara. He also holds an M.A. in philosophy and a B.A. in philosophy and German from Western Michigan University. Prior to his post-graduate work, Dr. Siewert worked as a political organizer and lobbyist for a network of state-level grassroots consumer justice organizations, including two years as the Campaign Director for the Coalition for Consumer Justice of Rhode Island. He also spent four years as a small business owner and manager.

Dr. Siewert’s most deeply held political beliefs are not about policy, but about political process—about what it takes to create cooperation among co-citizens while simultaneously respecting every individual’s right to pursue her own personal conception of the good. He is an avid wood-worker and animal lover who enjoys nothing more than a good game of chess with a purring cat on his lap and a dog on his feet.