Established in 1995, the Grace Hudowalski Charitable Trust continues and expands upon the life work and legacy of its founder, Grace Dolbek Leach Hudowalski (1906-2004). The Trust is a tax-exempt endowment (Charitable Trust) authorized by IRC Sec. 501(c)(3) and NY State law and is governed by a perpetual legal agreement (Declaration of Trust) executed in October 1995 and amended in 2021 directing the trustee to receive, safeguard, manage, administer, and expend trust funds for the following purposes:
(a) advance and promote public knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the unique history, literature, folklore, traditions, and cultural heritage associated with wilderness adventuring and outdoor recreation in the Adirondack high peaks region of New York State, mountain climbing in the Adirondack high peaks wilderness, and the history and common experience of the persons who have climbed the 46 high peaks (commonly known as 46ers), as well as organizations including the 46rs of Troy, New York (1937-1948), the Adirondack Mountain Club, and the Adirondack Forty-Sixers, Inc.,
(b) encourage, advance, and promote the responsible use, development and management of the lands commonly known as and designated the “Adirondack Park”, which lands are described and defined by N.Y. Executive Law Section 802(1) and N.Y. Environmental Conservation Law Section 9-0101(1), and
(c) aid, advance and promote the conservation and preservation of that portion of the New York State Forest Preserve situate within the said “Adirondack Park” as wild forest lands consistent with the spirit and intent of Article XIV of the New York State Constitution.
Previous major grant recipients include the Adirondack 46ers, Inc. (Office of the Historian, Trailmasters Equipment, Leave No Trace Education Campaign, Heaven Up-h’istedness Library Distribution); Adirondack History Museum (Hiking in the High Peaks Exhibit Design and Development); Adirondack Mountain Club (Summit Steward Program and Leave No Trace Public Service Campaign); Friends of Hurricane Mountain (Education); Friends of Poke-O-Moonshine (Trail redesign and construction and Educational Brochures); Northern Forest Canoe Trail (Trail Construction); Schroon North Hudson Historical Society (Folklore Essay Contest); YMCA Camp Chingachgook (Hiker Building and 46 High Peaks Adventure Program).
Currently the Trust has two extant grants; a five year $75,000 grant to the Adirondack History Museum (learn more) to support the permanent Hiking in the Adirondack High Peaks exhibit, associated collections and programming, and a five year $25,000 grant to support the Adirondack Mountain Club 46 High Peaks Workshop (learn more).
In 2021, trust completed a long-term strategic plan. In implementing that plan, the trustee designated Trustco Bank, investment manager for the trust for more than a decade, permanent successor trustee, ensuring perpetual professional management of trust assets and investments, and directed that the trust permanently endow the Hiking in the Adirondack High Peaks exhibit and the associated collections and programs of the Adirondack History Museum in Elizabethtown, New York.