Judith (Judy) Jenks Fraser-Pearse died peacefully at home in Vineyard Haven on Feb. 1 after a recent diagnosis of cancer. She was 78.

She was born to Donald and Edith Jenks of Princeton, N.J., on July 31, 1938. Judy first fell in love with the Island in 1947 when visiting with her parents. She attended Shipley School in Bryn Mawr, Pa. and Sweet Briar College in Sweet Briar, Va. She then worked in high fashion in Philadelphia where she met and married Alan Fraser. They began visiting the Island regularly when her parents moved year-round to their house in Vineyard Haven in 1961. As her children grew, Judy would bring the family to live with her mother to enjoy summers on the Island.

Judy raised her children in Westport, Conn., where she was involved with many volunteer community efforts. She served as a member of the board of directors of Trinity Parish Nursery School in Southport, Conn., and as a member of the board of trustees at the Nature Center for Environmental Activities in Westport.

Judy’s life changed dramatically in 1978 when she got sober. This led her to her life’s work helping individuals and families break the cycle of alcoholism. She worked as a volunteer at the Mid-Fairfield County council on alcoholism. She continued her education to become an alcoholism counselor through the National Council on Alcoholism/Westchester in White Plains, N.Y., and graduated from New Hampshire College with a bachelor’s degree in human services. She worked as an alcohol counselor at Martha’s Vineyard Community Services, later serving as temporary program director in 1980. In 1982 Judy founded FAACTS-Foundation of Alcohol Awareness, Counseling, Training, Services Inc., where she served as co-director.

Judy first moved to the Vineyard full-time in 1983. She established her private practice to help alcoholics, people with addictions, and their families. A national certified alcohol counselor, she was one of the first alcohol counselors in Massachusetts to receive licensure. She worked passionately to educate people that alcoholism is a disease and that there should not be a stigma attached to asking for help or receiving treatment. In 1996 she married Monte Pearse and moved to his hometown of Lexington, Va. Three years later they returned to the Island and Judy resumed her practice. In 1999 she became actively involved with Vineyard House. Since that time she served on the board of directors, board of advisors, and the resident support committee.

Judy is survived by her daughter Alison Fraser Sheridan, son in law Tom, granddaughter Terra of Honeoye Falls, N.Y. and her son Porter Fraser of Vineyard Haven. She was predeceased by her sister Sally Porter Jenks of New York city and husbands Alan Fraser and Monte Pearse. She is grateful for the love and support of her beloved friends, her relationships in the community, and life on the Island.

A celebration of her life is being planned for the fall. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Vineyard House, P.O. Box 4599, 56 Short Hill Road Vineyard Haven, MA 02568; or Hospice of Martha’s Vineyard, PO Box 1748, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568.