Elizabeth Morris

Elizabeth “Liz” Morris is a nursing legend in Alabama.  After earning her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at The Ohio State University, she moved to Alabama and worked at Jackson Hospital as a private duty nurse.  She also served on the faculty of St. Margaret’s Hospital School of Nursing in Montgomery. In 1973, Liz was named the Executive Director of the Alabama State Nurses Association.  During her tenure she earned a Master’s Degree in Education from Troy State University. Leading the Alabama State Nurses Association for 25 years, Liz was an incredibly influential and effective voice for nursing in state government.  Always the quiet voice of reason and sensibility, she received extraordinary results working with various regulatory agencies such as The Alabama Board of Nursing and the Alabama Department of Public Health.  Examples of Liz’s ability and success abound.   In 1978 she was instrumental in the passage of a bill establishing graduate scholarships for nurses, greatly expanding educational possibilities for nurses around the state. In the 1980s, Liz successfully championed the establishment of a law allowing Certified Nurse Midwives to practice in Alabama.  She succeeded in expanding practice rights for Nurse Practitioners to include prescriptive authority.  A strong advocate for school nurses, she worked tirelessly with the legislature to require nurses in public schools.  “Behind the scenes”, Liz continuously monitored the political climate and never hesitated to advocate her position if nurses’ rights or the well-being of the profession were under attack.  Her intimate knowledge of the political process, her ongoing efforts to maintain positive relationships with the political players, and her unrelenting drive to produce what was best for nursing and for patient care are earmarks of her career.  Liz Morris was, without question, the very public face of nursing in the Alabama Legislature for 25 years and, quite possibly, the most influential voice in the public policy arena for Alabama nurses in the last century.