Nevada Assemblywoman Peggy Pierce died Thursday after a battle with cancer. She was 59 years old.

Assemblywoman Pierce was one of Nevada’s most forward-thinking, steadfast, and principled legislators. She was a staunch advocate for the civil rights and civil liberties for all people in Nevada, especially for the poor and communities who do not traditionally have a voice in the political process.

“Peggy was a fierce champion for respecting, celebrating and honoring the rights of all people. Her work in the Nevada Legislature was trailblazing and tireless. Today Nevada lost a true champion of the people and advocate for those whose voices frequently go unheard. We owe her a debt of gratitude for her work on behalf of and dedication to celebrating and respecting all people,” said Tod Story, Executive Director of the ACLU of Nevada.

At 2013 legislature alone, Assemblywoman Pierce introduced two of the most positive civil liberties bills of the session. AB 313 would have required law enforcement to obtain a warrant before accessing GPS and cell phone tracking information. AB 133 would have prohibited strip searches of non-violent, non-drug, and non-alcohol misdemeanor arrestees unless law enforcement can articulate suspicion for a search.

“Peggy was one of the great civil libertarians in the Nevada legislature, who always proceeded in a thoughtful and passionate way about her deeply-held beliefs,” said Vanessa Spinazola, Legislative and Advocacy Director for the ACLU of Nevada. “She worked hard for everyday Nevadans, and sought to see all sides of an issue and reach compromise. She will be sorely missed in the Nevada legislature and by all advocates for social justice.”

Assemblywoman Pierce was a strong advocate for a transparent and open government that was accountable to the people it serves. She believed that a good education is a right for all young people in Nevada, not a privilege, and fought each legislative session to have stable funding for Nevada’s public schools.

Assemblywoman Pierce was born in a suburb of Boston and moved to Las Vegas in 1988. She was first elected to the Nevada Assembly in 2002 as a Democrat and represented District 3 in Las Vegas.