Gloucester Environmental Author Deborah Cramer Honored with Audubon ’A’ Award

Release Date:
June 11, 2018

LINCOLN, MA—Mass Audubon has bestowed one of its highest honors, the Audubon ‘A’ Award, on Deborah Cramer, whose books on marine and coastal habitats and the creatures dependent upon them have established the Gloucester author as a recognized 21st-century voice for the environment.

The Audubon ‘A’ Award salutes an individual, group, or organization that has furthered the cause of conservation and environmental protection or has broadened the public awareness of the nature of Massachusetts. 

Cramer’s work includes three books, Great Waters: An Atlantic Passage; Smithsonian Ocean: Our Water Our World; and, most recently, The Narrow Edge: A Tiny Bird, an Ancient Crab, and an Epic Journey. A dramatic narrative of the relationship between two vulnerable species, red knot shorebirds and horseshoe crabs, The Narrow Edge is a Rachel Carson Environmental Book Award winner and has been praised by critics, including Bill McKibben and Elizabeth Kolbert.

She was presented her award by Mass Audubon President Gary Clayton at the conservation organization’s headquarters in Lincoln June 3. Cramer said she was “incredibly honored, completely surprised, and totally delighted to receive this award.”

The author recalled that her children’s introductions to nature included summer camp programs at Mass Audubon’s Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary in Topsfield and coastal programs along the North Shore. “So I have a particular connection to this organization that I love, which goes way back,” she said.

Cramer also lauded Mass Audubon, the state’s largest nature conservation nonprofit, for standing at the forefront of climate action.

“With climate change one of the most pressing issues facing us today, Mass Audubon is promoting climate mitigation and adaption policies at the state level, dramatically reducing its own carbon emissions, including climate science in its education programs, and protecting ecologically important lands along our coastlines,” Cramer said.

“And its wildlife sanctuaries, encouraging so many people of all ages to get outside and connect with nature, demonstrate the importance of leading by example,” she added.

In presenting the award to Cramer, Clayton noted, “Whether witnessing the struggles of migrating shorebirds in the Southern Hemisphere or wading through a Cape Ann tidal creek in an era of rising sea levels, Deborah embodies the spirit of the Audubon ‘A’ Award and is a worthy honoree.”


Mass Audubon is the largest nature-based conservation organization in New England. Founded in 1896 by two women who fought for the protection of birds, Mass Audubon carries on their legacy by focusing on the greatest challenges facing the environment today: the loss of biodiversity, inequitable access to nature, and climate change. With the help of our 160,000 members and supporters, we protect wildlife, conserve and restore resilient land, advocate for impactful environmental policies, offer nationally recognized education programs for adults and children, and provide endless opportunities to experience the outdoors at our wildlife sanctuaries. Explore, find inspiration, and take action at