Local Politics

Longtime Durham County commissioner Heron dies

Posted January 23, 2014

Becky Heron

— Becky Heron, who served on the Durham County Board of Commissioners for nearly three decades, died Thursday. She was 86.

Heron was elected to the board in 1982, and she retired in 2011 for health reasons. In 1994, she became the first woman to chair the board, and she was named 1995 Outstanding County Commissioners by the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners.

“Becky Heron was special and leaves an unforgettable legacy about public service that her family and all citizens in Durham County can cherish," County Manager Mike Ruffin said in a statement. "I will miss her and will always cherish the years I got to work with and for her.”

Among her accomplishments, Heron is known for shifting Board of Commissioners meetings from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. so more people could attend. She also was instrumental in developing the first land use plan for Durham County and worked to develop the county’s first animal control ordinance.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

Ruffin has ordered county flags at county buildings to fly at half-staff until the day after her services.


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  • Obamacare prevails again Jan 23, 2014

    View quoted thread


  • yankee1 Jan 23, 2014


  • raleighboy524 Jan 23, 2014

    Tough as nails. Smart as a whip. A dedicated public servant. They literally don't make them like her anymore.

  • Obamacare prevails again Jan 23, 2014

    Rest in Peace Betty.

  • Krimson Jan 23, 2014

    God bless and thank you for your service to the City of Durham and to the State of NC.

  • jackaroe123 Jan 23, 2014

    We should all be so fortunate as to work at something we are passionate about into our 80s, but sad to hear, nonetheless. Her public life was one with great honor and no regrets. Thanks for your service and RIP, Ms. Becky!