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Alumni

SPOTLIGHT

Lawrence B. Morris III ’65 2019 Horace Dutton Taft Alumni Medal Honoree LARRY MORRIS ’65, who receives

this year’s Horace Dutton Taft Alumni Medal, is a modest but social man. From the earliest days of his career, he understood—instinctively it would seem—that conservation and resource management are really about relationships. Morris describes himself as someone who never grew up or knew what to do with himself. But the fact remains that he has led the Quebec-Labrador Foundation, or QLF, for nearly 40 years, and he leaves behind an incredible legacy in the people he has mentored there. QLF works around the world investing in nature to help cities and rural communities, companies, and farmers—one person at a time—plan for a future where the needs of people and the environment can be balanced. Three years into his president emeritus role, in which he is a sort of roving ambassador, Morris continues to serve QLF. “It was hard at first,” he says, “in a psychological sense, but I’m enjoying it.” In his typically self-deprecating tone, Morris refers to his exalted sounding title of emeritus as “learning to keep my mouth shut.” This new role has given him the “opportunity to take care of unfinished business” and given him time to write and reflect. He calls it a labor of love. “I’d do it for free if I could afford it—that’s been true of my whole career,” he adds. QLF is an organization built on relationships, he says. “It’s a hard sell unless you’ve had familiarity with it. Keep your friends and relations connected.” He mentions numerous Tafties who’ve supported him in QLF’s work along the way. Former 6

Taft Bulletin / SPRING 2019

Headmaster John Esty, when he was at Rockefeller Brothers Fund, and Bob Poole ’50 both directed him early in his career, and many 1965 classmates and alumni from other classes have supported him all along. The organization works locally, but ties into big environmental initiatives and

brings them into communities. “It sounds simple,” he says, “but no one was doing it then—community-based conservation.” That connection between community and conservation was not obvious at first, he says. The QLF team began with a focus on service and community and gradually found

Profile for Taft School

Spring 2019 Taft Bulletin  

Spring 2019 Taft Bulletin