Grace Pierce-Beck spent more than twenty-five years working to see that our environment was protected and respected. The impact of her dedication to the defense of our natural world is extraordinary. She started her career in Washington, DC, as an issues specialist and lobbyist for The Wilderness Society in the mid-seventies.
After working on John Anderson's 1980 presidential campaign as National Environmental Director, Grace returned to Delaware and became active in the Delaware Audubon Society. Grace served on the board of directors of the Delaware Audubon Society; as well as serving as president, vice president, program chair, conservation chair, and environmental advocacy chair.
She served on a number of committees concerned with environmental issues – including the Governor's Wastewater Facilities Advisory Council, Delaware Inland Bays Center, Delaware Sea Grant College Advisory Council, the St. Jones Greenway Commission, Silver Lake Watershed Committee, Non-point Source Advisory and Review Committee, Freshwater Wetlands Task Force, Coastal Zone Act Regulations Task Force, and Vice-Chair of the Inland Bays Citizens Advisory Committee.
Grace was awarded National Audubon Society's 1996 Charles H. Callison Award and was listed in Who's Who of American Women from 1975 through 1982. In 1997, Grace was awarded the Delaware Audubon Society Conservation Award for her lifetime of service for the betterment of the environment and for her continued dedication on behalf of all Delawareans. She was also featured in the May-June 1997 issue of Audubon magazine, and the Delaware Sierra Club named Grace its Activist of the Year for 1997.
Grace viewed her work as an investment in the future. "Attempts to repeal environmental laws and the progress that we've made over the past 25 years is the biggest challenge for environmental groups right now," she said when accepting her award. "We must also educate the public on what technology is doing to and for our environment."
Grace died on October 5, 2008.