The best undergraduate philosophy teacher I had was a lowly adjunct, one Richard Morris, M.A. (Glasgow). I thought of him the other day in connection with John Hospers whose An Introduction to Philosophical Analysis (2nd ed.) he had assigned for a course entitled "Linguistic Philosophy." I also took a course in logic from him. The text was Irving Copi's Symbolic Logic (3rd ed.) You will not be surprised to hear that I still have both books. And I'll be damned if I will part with either one of them, despite the fact that I have a later edition of the Copi text, an edition I used in a logic course I taught.
I don't believe Morris ever published anything. The Philosopher's Index shows a few citations for one or more Richard Morrises none of whom I have reason to believe is the adjunct in question. But without publications or doctorate Morris was more of a philosopher than many of his quondam colleagues.
The moral of the story? Real philosophers can be found anywhere in the academic hierarchy. So judge each case by its merits and be not too impressed by credentials and trappings.
I contacted Morris ten years ago or so and thanked him for his efforts way back when. The thanking of old teachers who have had a positive influence is a practice I recommend. I've done it a number of times. I even tracked down an unforgettable and dedicated and inspiring third-grade teacher. I asked her if anyone else had ever thanked her, and she said no. What ingrates we are.
So if you have something to say to someone you'd better say it now while you both draw breath. Heute rot, morgen tot.