Pittsfield Advocate Beverly Grady Recognized for Her Service
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The City Council Chambers were alive with applause on Tuesday as Beverly Grady was recognized for her lifetime of charity and advocacy.
Friends and family cheered after Mayor Linda Tyer read a proclamation honoring Grady, who has devoted 38 years of combined service to the Pittsfield Handicapped Committee and its successor, the Pittsfield Commission on Disabilities.
She also served on the Berkshire Benevolent Association for the Blind for 57 years and volunteered at the Lions Club for 23 years.
"Beverly uses her time, talent, and enthusiasm to enrich the lives of others while positively impacting our communities through her advocacy for all," Tyer read. "The city of Pittsfield is grateful for Beverly's leadership and continuous efforts to provide for so many in our community."
Tyer said she has been "a dear friend to Pittsfield for many, many years."
The presentation was a surprise to Grady, as she thought she was attending the council meeting in support of another colleague.
A Pittsfield native who has been blind since birth, Grady is a graduate of Perkins School for the Blind in Watertown.
Her advocacy resulted in the city's accessibility features for people who are visually impaired. These include sound signals at city crosswalks, braille signs on public buildings, and accessible voting machines.
"I'm kind of lost for words," Grady said. "But I'd like to thank everybody, and for all the years that I've been on the [Commission on Disabilities] and the [Berkshire Benevolent Association for the Blind] and everything I've really learned a lot and met a lot of people and I've enjoyed doing it and I hope to continue it, so thank you again, everybody."
Because her birthday was on the following day, attendees also sang "Happy Birthday" and initiated another round of applause.
Tyer assured Grady that she had many friends and family in the room.
"This level of service to the community, we had to recognize it," said Cathy Carchedi, chair of the Commission on Disabilities, said last week in setting up the recognition.
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