Karen Kumm Morris passed away on January 11, 2019 at the home she helped design in Arlington, Virginia. Karen was born in California on November 20, 1951 but spent most of her early years in Arizona. A part of the country she loved. She is survived by her husband Rick Morris, son Benjamin, daughter Morgan, mother Bettie and brother Keith.
Karen was an accomplished artist with a passion for landscapes and nature. A graduate of the University of Arizona and the University of Massachusetts, Karen had a master’s degree in Landscape Architecture. She had an accomplished career as an Urban Designer with the Maryland National Capital Parks and Planning Commission. Shortly after retiring she was recognized by the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) for her contributions to Urban Design and given the honor of an ASLA Fellow. The designation of Fellow is conferred upon individuals in recognition of exceptional accomplishments over a sustained period of time. Karen gave generously of her time, serving as an Arlington County Planning Commissioner for three years, and a volunteer on the Urban Forestry Commission, Lee Highway Alliance, Rosslyn BID and the Potomac Chapter of ASLA.
Karen had a life time love of art and was a skilled watercolorist. Many of her works were picked for juried shows in the DC area. At the time of her passing she had a painting hanging at the Torpedo Factory in Old Town Alexandria. During many a family trip to Europe, Peru, Alaska, the National Parks and elsewhere, she always had a sketch book and camera to capture beautiful moments.
Karen’s creativity and generous spirit touched many people. Her passing is mourned by many colleagues, fellow Arlington County volunteers, local artist, neighbors and family. A celebration of her life will take place on Saturday, January 26 at 2 PM at the Unitarian Church of Arlington, 4444 Arlington Blvd, Arlington, VA. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Karen’s name may be made to the Reinsch Pierce Family Center for Breast Health at the Virginia Hospital Center.