Actors on a Larger Stage

In July 1983, several crew members of the Rainbow Warrior were arrested and held by Soviet authorities during what would become one of the daring opening chapters in Greenpeace history. The captured crewmen were held on the Siberian coast for several days before being released due to public pressure. Some of that pressure came from Alice Lane*, who telephoned the Soviet embassy in Washington, D.C., at the request of Greenpeace.

"I told them that the activists meant no harm and just wanted to protect the whales and now were missing their families," Alice recalled. "I liked knowing I had a voice in an important issue. I felt very effective."

For Alice and her husband Bill*, it was the beginning of a long relationship with Greenpeace. "Other organizations work for the environment in other ways, but Greenpeace does things differently," said Alice. "Greenpeace are activists. They make people aware, and get people excited about issues. Greenpeace is very brave."

Alice and Bill are both retired actors who spent 35 years working on Broadway, off-Broadway, TV soap operas, commercials, and film – sometimes even working together in commercials. Married for 44 years, they now live in near-anonymity in a retirement community near the Atlantic seaboard.

The couple put much of their savings into tax-exempt investments over the years, but recent declines in interest rates led them to consider other ways to increase their spendable income.


Alice and Bill decided to use a portion of their savings to establish Greenpeace Gift Annuities for each of their lifetimes. They like knowing that their gifts are helping o support a cause they feel so strongly about, and they enjoy the fixed income payments and tax benefits from their gift annuities.

Because Alice and Bill have no children, they have left instructions that their estate be divided among several charitable interests, including Greenpeace.

"I think we would have left these charitable bequests even if we had children," said Bill. "It would have been a wonderful way to teach them the value of philanthropy."

*Per there request these donor asked to remain anonymous.

Greenpeace Fund
702 H Street NW, Suite 300
Washington, DC 20001
1-800-328-0678 - Corrine Barr
1-800-621-6038 - Tamara Lane