HONORING WILLIAM `ZEKE' GRADER, JR.; Congressional Record Vol. 161, No. 52
(Extensions of Remarks - April 13, 2015)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Pages E453-E454]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]



                           HON. JARED HUFFMAN

                             of california

                    in the house of representatives

                         Monday, April 13, 2015

  Mr. HUFFMAN. Mr. Speaker, I rise today with my colleagues, Nancy 
Pelosi, Mike Thompson, and Jackie Speier, to recognize the incredible 
legacy of William `Zeke' Grader, Jr., who has tirelessly served 
California's fishermen and coastal communities and as an environmental 
champion and community leader for many decades. Always willing to share 
his vast knowledge and expertise with others, Zeke has helped fishermen 
to define their interest in battles over offshore oil and gas 
development, land-use, timber harvesting, water allocation, and other 
issues of social equity and sustainability.
   From an early age, Zeke Grader grew up in the coastal fishing 
community. His father founded Grader Fish, Co., in Fort Bragg, 
California, to buy, process, and broker fresh, local fish. Zeke spent 
much of his childhood on the family dock, helping fishermen to unload 
their catch. He graduated from Fort Bragg High School and moved south 
to attend Sonoma State University, where he studied political science 
and graduated in 1970.
   Zeke Grader served his country in the United States Marine Corps 
before obtaining a law degree from the University of San Francisco and 
passing the California State Bar in 1975. At that time, Congress was 
deliberating how to assert our national sovereignty over a two-hundred 
mile wide economic zone in order to curb foreign overfishing in U.S. 
waters, allow depleted stocks to recover, and conserve fishery 
resources. Amidst such explosive public interest in natural resource 
protection, some in the fishing industry felt threatened by the 
burgeoning environmental movement. Zeke Grader was asked to serve as 
the executive officer of the newly formed Pacific Coast Federation of 
Fishermen's Associations (PCFFA), and he led the organization in a more 
productive and effective direction by embracing efforts to protect the 
coastal environment.
   With Zeke at the helm, the PCFFA took a leading role in crafting 
important state and federal legislation to preserve the coastal fishing

[[Page E454]]

industry. Zeke lobbied strongly for California's 1988 Salmon, Steelhead 
Trout, and Anadromous Fisheries Program Act, which called for a 
statewide salmon conservation plan to double the present numbers of 
wild salmon. He pushed for modernization of the federal Fishery 
Conservation and Management Act, litigated to expedite water quality 
restoration under the federal Clean Water Act, and fought for 
protections of fishing grounds by organizing for the prevention and 
clean-up of petroleum spills.
   In 1988, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration honored 
Zeke Grader with its prominent Environmental Hero award. For many Zeke 
has been a hero over many decades and his tireless efforts to protect 
the wild California Coast have ensured the present vitality of our 
fishing communities.
   Our friend and former colleague George Miller is one of those who 
counts Zeke as an inspiration. He passed along this message to us to 
include in the Record: ``Zeke Grader has been my friend almost my 
entire time in the Congress. During that time Zeke has been a leader in 
our state, on the Pacific Coast and in our nation to give voice and 
rights to the men and women of our vital and historic commercial 
fishing industry. The Pacific coast fisheries from time to time are 
threatened with droughts, economic downturns, high fuel prices, habitat 
destruction, and bad public policy. Through it all, Zeke Grader has led 
this magnificent group of fishers to maintain and grow our fisheries. 
So many people in California's diverse economy are dependent on their 
success. The commercial fishers of the Pacific coast must both catch 
and protect this magnificent species. Zeke Grader for so many years has 
successfully advocated for both the fish and the fishers. All of us owe 
him great thanks.''
   Today, Zeke continues his strong advocacy by working with and 
advising leaders at every level of industry and government. His legacy 
shows us the lasting positive impact that one man can have on countless 
others and he has shown that you can build a thriving and sustainable 
economy without depleting natural resources for future generations. Mr. 
Speaker, it is fitting that we honor Zeke today for his work in 
representing the fishing community, and we express our deepest 
appreciation for his friendship and his service.