Larry Morse Visiting Botanist Fund

Erin Chen

Director of Development


Larry Morse was a legend in plant conservation. After earning his Ph.D. in biology from Harvard University in 1979, Larry started a nearly 30-year career in plant conservation, first with the Maryland Natural Heritage Program. In 1981 he was hired as one of the original natural heritage scientists at The Nature Conservancy (TNC), becoming TNC’s chief botanist, and continuing his career at NatureServe until his retirement in 2006. He was a walking encyclopedia of information about plant identification and conservation as well as the cultural uses, historical relevance, and ecological contributions of plants. Larry passed away in early 2012.

With his family’s encouragement, NatureServe has developed the Larry Morse Visiting Botanist Fund to advance plant conservation in his memory.

Part of Larry’s legacy at NatureServe was his passion for involving others in botany, from interns to seasoned scientists. This program invites network members, from young botanists just starting their careers to network alumni who have retired or moved on to other ventures, to take a Visiting Botanist position at NatureServe. Through this program they will employ their knowledge and expertise on behalf of plant conservation.

We ask donors to commit to a five-year recurring donation or a one-time gift to create a sustainable program for advancing plant conservation.

Generous contributions from our donors have enabled us to create the Larry E. Morse Visiting Botanist Fellowship, a position that will honor Larry's commitment to plant conservation by focusing on high-priority plant research.

Please click here to make a contribution. To make your gift a recurring contribution over five years, please select the option “I want to contribute this amount every 1 year for 5 installments.”

To contribute by check, please write “Larry Morse” in the memo line and mail to:

Attn: Development Team
4600 N. Fairfax Dr. 7th Floor
Arlington, VA 22203


Special Thanks to:

Robert Alvo


Rodney Bartgis

Claire Caudill/Peterson Charitable Lead Trust

Steve Chaplin

Erin Chen

Robert Chipley

Terry Cook

Richard and Mary Crouch

Barbara Goodman

Bonnie Heidel

James C. Ludwig

Larry Master

Kat Maybury

David Mehlman

Julie Moore

Will and Margie Murray

Robert Riordan

Doug Ripley

Jocelyn Sladen

Tom Smith

Jill Swearingen

Christopher Topik

Nancy Vehrs

Martha Whitney

Leni Wilsmann

Virginia Native Plant Society


Click here to see photos from the November 27, 2012 event honoring Larry's memory.

Click here to read a tribute in Larry’s Memory by Paul J. Harmon, Endangered Species and Natural Heritage Botanist, WV Natural Heritage Group, Wildlife Diversity Program.