Lawson A.B. Copley, M.D., Staff Orthopedist at Scottish Rite for Children

Lawson A.B. Copley, M.D.

Staff Orthopedist

Lawson A. Copley is a Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery and Pediatrics at the University of Texas Southwestern.  He is a staff orthopaedic surgeon at Children’s Health System of Texas and Scottish Rite for Children with 24 years of practice experience.  Since 2003, he has led a multi-disciplinary initiative at Children’s Medical Center of Dallas to improve care for children with musculoskeletal infections. His team developed clinical practice guidelines for these conditions and implemented the guidelines in long-term clinical outcomes research. He has conducted basic science research on the Staphylococcus aureus genome, transcriptome, and proteome in his laboratory in the Center for Pediatric Bone Biology and Translational Research of Scottish Rite for Children. He serves on the National Bone and Joint Infection Guideline development panel of the Infectious Disease Society of America and Pediatric Infectious Disease Society. His musculoskeletal infection program is recognized by the Joint Commission for Disease-Specific Care Certification in Pediatric Musculoskeletal Infection. His program is also recognized by the American Board of Medical Subspecialties as a Maintenance of Certification Quality Improvement Project. He has authored 92 manuscripts, review articles and textbook chapters. Dr. Copley also serves as a Colonel in the United States Air Force and is currently the Medical Squadron Commander for the 301st Fighter Wing in Fort Worth. He leads a 250-member squadron that has dual missions of Expeditionary Medical Support in deployed settings and Aeromedical Readiness for over 1800 members of the Fighter Wing.


  • Orthopedic Trauma
  • ​Musculoskeletal Infection

  • Scottish Rite for Children
  • Children’s Health Dallas


  • Wheaton College, magna cum laude, Phi Sigma Tau
  • The University of Kansas Medical Center, magna cum laude, Alpha Omega Alpha
  • Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management, Master of Business Administration


  • University of Pennsylvania General Surgery


  • University of Pennsylvania Orthopaedic Surgery


  • Scottish Rite for Children Dorothy and Bryant Edwards Fellowship in Pediatric Orthopaedics and Scoliosis

  • Stanley M.K. Chung Award Excellence in Pediatric Orthopaedic Research
  • Meritorious Service Medal 
  • Joint Service Achievement Award

  • American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery, 2000
  • American Board of Preventive Medicine Clinical Informatics, 2017

  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, fellow 
  • American Medical Association
  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • Musculoskeletal Infection Society
  • Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America 
  • Dallas County Medical Society 
  • Texas Medical Association 
  • Texas Orthopaedic Association, delegate to Texas 
  • The Texas Society of Sports Medicine 
  • Tachdjian’s Pediatric Orthopaedics, Fourth and Fifth Editions, contributing author
  • European Society of Pediatric Infectious Disease
  • Orthopaedic Research Society
  • Areospace Medical Association

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