Advisory Committee on Economic Inclusion (ComE-IN)
Panelist Biography - Michael Morris
National Disability Institute
Michael Morris is the Founder and Executive Director of National Disability Institute where he is the senior subject matter expert on cross-system collaborations, integrating financial capability development services into disability-specific and generic publically-funded systems (Workforce Development, Medicaid, Education and Vocational Rehabilitation, Ticket to Work and Social Security).
Mr. Morris is a recognized national leader on disability public policy and has managed more than a dozen national demonstration projects with an emphasis on capacity building through multi-method training and technical assistance (TA) activities. As a former legal counsel to the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Disability Policy, and Executive Director of United Cerebral Palsy Associations, Mr. Morris is adept at complex program design and model development with engagement of public and private sector agencies/organizations to transform thinking and behavior concerning financial empowerment for economically vulnerable populations. His proposal for policy development led to the passage by Congress of the Assistive Technology Act. Mr. Morris is also Director of the Burton Blatt Institute at Syracuse University, a multi-disciplinary research center focused on social and economic inclusion of people with disabilities in communities worldwide. He is the co-founder of the Real Economic Impact Tour and Network which, since 2005, has assisted more than 2 million low-income individuals with disabilities access the Earned Income Tax Credit and receive more than $1.8 billion dollars in tax refunds.
Mr. Morris received his undergraduate degree in political science with honors from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, and his law degree from Emory University School of Law in Atlanta, Georgia. Mr. Morris co-authored two publications for the National Council on Disability: The State of 21st Century Long Term Services and Supports: Financing and Systems Reform for American with Disabilities (2005), and The State of 21st Century Financial Incentives for Americans with Disabilities (2008). He is co-author of Tax Credits and Asset Accumulation: Findings from the 2004 NOD Harris Survey of Americans with Disabilities published in Disabilities Studies Quarterly (2005), which reported on research findings from the inaugural Disability and Rehabilitation Research Projects (DRRP) on Asset Accumulation. In 2014, he co-authored the National Report on the Financial Capability of Adults with Disabilities, based on data analyzed from the FINRA Financial Investment Education Foundation. Mr. Morris also founded the ABLE National Resource Center in January 2015, a collaborative of more than 24 national disability organizations working together to accelerate the design and availability of ABLE accounts to meet the needs of individuals with disabilities and their families in every state.