Elizabeth Cohn Morris, a lifelong champion of women’s rights passed away on Dec. 5 at age 63 in Chicago after a short but valiant fight with a recurrence of breast cancer. A memorial service for Betsy will be held in Chicago in January.
She is survived by her devoted husband of 37 years, Gareth Morris, her beloved daughter and son-in-law, Madelyn and Dan Goldberg, and sisters, Jo Sawyer and Doe Florsheim.
She, known as Betsy, daughter of the late Julius and Marilyn Cohn, grew up in Omaha and attended Central High School and Brown University. After moving to Chicago, Betsy worked in development for the University of Chicago, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Hadassah. She also served as Director of the Chicago International Film Festival. She then consulted with the Steven Spielberg Shoah Foundation, the Gates Foundation’s Vaccine Fund, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the University of Chicago Law School, WTTW Chicago and Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. Most recently, Betsy was the Director of Major Gifts for the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews.
In addition to her professional accomplishments, Betsy dedicated her life to the protection and preservation of women’s rights. She spent over 25 years leading and advancing the mission of Planned Parenthood, including serving as the Chair of Planned Parenthood of Chicago and until her death as Chair of Planned Parenthood of Illinois.
In honor of her life’s work, the family has established a fund in her memory at Planned Parenthood of Illinois, to continue the significant work that Betsy so tirelessly supported. Memorials may be made to Planned Parenthood of Illinois in memory of Betsy Morris.