Dale Morris

Director of Strategic Partnerships

Following decades working at the intersection of water management, science and policy, former Royal Netherlands Embassy Senior Economist Dale Morris joined The Water Institute of the Gulf in May 2018 as Director of Strategic Partnerships.

After six years in the U.S. Air Force, with more than half of those served in the Netherlands, Morris served as Legislative Director and Press Secretary in the U.S. Congress, focused on fiscal policy (tax, budget), trade, energy, entitlements, appropriations, and water issues. He moved to the Royal Netherlands Embassy as Congressional Liaison and provided policy support on trade, macroeconomic, productivity, energy, and communications issues. Post Hurricane Katrina (2005), Morris coordinated and directed the Embassy’s and Dutch Government’s recovery outreach to Louisiana, with a focus upon flood risk assessment, mitigation and communications, integrated water management for storm surge, tidal, stormwater and groundwater flooding. Morris engaged with federal, state and local government officials, stakeholders and the public on these issues and led the liaison on flood, water, climate and adaptation challenges with the US Congress and other U.S. states, including California, Florida, Texas, Virginia and New York. Morris co-founded the Dutch Dialogues, focused upon urban water management challenges and opportunities in post-Katrina New Orleans. Dutch Dialogues have been organized elsewhere in the U.S., leading to far-reaching planning, policy, and regulatory improvements in flood-prone and flood-recovering communities.

Morris directs the Institute’s outreach to and engagement with key communities, municipalities, states, and organizations outside of Louisiana and guides the Institute’s proposal efforts.

Morris also worked closely with Sen. Mary Landrieu as she and others repeatedly visited the Netherlands and Deltares to see where Dutch expertise meshed with Louisiana’s needs. After her 2009 trip, the Senator concluded that Louisiana needed a Deltares-type institute and asked Morris to help the state understand the Deltares-model, its benefits, and relevance to knowledge-creation in deltaic and coastal areas. Morris also worked with New Orleans-based architect David Waggonner, co-founding the “Dutch Dialogues,” which organized detailed workshops about living with water in post-Katrina New Orleans. The Dutch Dialogues have been used elsewhere in the U.S. and are in demand in other flood-prone and flood-recovering communities.