Born in Memphis, Tennessee, Morgan began her career at the Ocala Star Banner in 1965, and moved to the St. Petersburg Times in 1968. While working full-time as a reporter, she attended Pasco-Hernando State College and received her associate degree.
In 1985, she and Jack Reed shared the Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting for their coverage of corruption in the Pasco County Sheriff's Office; she was the first woman to win a Pulitzer Prize in that category. In another case, in 1973, she was convicted of contempt for refusing to disclose a confidential source; the Florida Supreme Court overturned the conviction in 1976. In 1982 she was a Pulitzer finalist for her investigation of drug trafficking in north central Florida counties. She became Capital Bureau chief in Tallahassee in 1986 and later worked on special projects and as a columnist.
A 2012 All Things Considered profile described Morgan as "an institution in Florida". Seven years after her first announced retirement led to a continued active reporting career, she announced her full retirement in January 2013.
Morgan's investigation of the $49.6 million mortgage fraud/Ponzi scheme run in Glenville, North Carolina, to where she had retired, by Miami developer Domenico Rabuffo - while he was in the United States Federal Witness Protection Program  - was the subject of the American Greed episode "Goodfella Gone Bad".
- Elizabeth A. Brennan, Elizabeth C. Clarage, eds., Who's who of Pulitzer Prize Winners (Greenwood Publishing Group, 1999), ISBN 978-1573561112, p. 356. Excerpts available at Google Books.
-  St. Petersburg Times - Aug 10, 2002
- Alison Pruitt, "Breaking the mold in journalism", Community College Times, April 6, 2012.
-  St. Petersburg Times - Jul 31, 1976 page 13
-  St. Petersburg Times - Jun 22, 1982 page 34
- Noah Adams, "After Decades, Journo Still Covers Fla. Legislature", All Things Considered, January 31, 2012.
- "'St. Pete' Legend Lucy Morgan to Retire", Editor & Publisher, November 14, 2005.
- "Pulitzer Prize winning reporter Lucy Morgan retiring. Really.", Tampa Bay Times, January 7, 2013.
- "Lucy W. Morgan", Florida Women's Hall of Fame (accessed 2013-08-26).
- George Michael and Michael Killenberg, Public Affairs Reporting Now: News of, by and for the People (CRC Press, 2012), ISBN 978-1136033216, p. 106. Excerpts available at Google Books.
- "Florida Developer Gets 27 Years in N.C. Mortgage Fraud Scheme" by Lucy Morgan Tampa Bay Times September 30, 2014; accessed August 26, 2016