Stephenson Sisters’ Scholarship Fund Established in Honor of Erin Morris

Erin Morris of Explore Nature!

In December of 2019, Erin Morris, a long-time employee of Cincinnati Parks, officially retired. Erin was a dedicated public servant who worked in the Explore Nature! division, educating children and adults on the wonders of the natural world. Her retirement marked the end of a 32 year career with Cincinnati Parks. Throughout her tenure, Erin was a passionate educator and fierce parks advocate who bettered the Cincinnati community. Her work provided nature education programs to underserved youth, invaluable community programming and a wealth of knowledge for others to learn from.

On behalf of the Cincinnati Parks Foundation Board and team, we thank Erin for her dedication, hard work and passion.

Stephenson Sisters’ Scholarship Fund

To celebrate the career and legacy of Erin Morris, the Cincinnati Parks Foundation established the Stephenson Sisters’ Scholarship Fund. This annual $3,500 scholarship fund will provide free or reduced pricing for underserved youth to attend Explore Nature! camps. (Contact Explore Nature! at 513-321-6070 to learn more.)

At the request of Erin, the fund was named after the Stephenson Sisters, Hester and Bernice (pictured above). The sisters were employees of Cincinnati Parks from 1931 to 1970. Hester was Cincinnati Parks’ first full-time naturalist and was the supervising naturalist for most of her long career. Bernice was the second full-time naturalist hired by Cincinnati Parks and worked under her sister. Both women were critical to the start of Nature Education for Parks (now Explore Nature!), working out of Burnet Woods’ Trailside Nature Center.

Explore Nature Summer Camps

Planning and organizing the Explore Nature! Summer Day Camp program was a large part of Erin’s work and is continued by award-winning naturalists. If you have never enrolled your children in one of these camps before, we highly recommend it!

Cincinnati Parks Explore Nature! Summer Day Camps are for children ages 3–14 years and include themes such as Harry Potter, Star Wars, Outdoor Skills and more. Children enjoy daily hikes, live animal encounters and tons of outdoor fun.


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