Jean Joyce, 88, a retired Foreign Service officer who was a founding member of the Women's Action Organization, a group working for advances for women in the State Department, died June 26 at her residence at the Georgetown Retirement Home. She had emphysema.
Ms. Joyce worked for the State Department in Washington from 1961 to 1975. She served in its education and cultural affairs bureau. With the Women's Action Organization during those years, she wrote studies concerning discrimination against women by U.S. agencies.
In retirement, she had lived in Washington and Lyme, Conn. She helped supervise the development of the archives at Yale University devoted to Chester Bowles, a former Connecticut governor and high Washington official.
She also was a member of the Woman's National Democratic Club and attended the opera.
Ms. Joyce, who was born on Long Island, was a home economics graduate of Cornell University. In the 1930s and early 1940s, she was a reporter and editor in New York state with the Rochester Times Union and the New York Herald Tribune.
In 1943, she came to Washington and joined the Office of Price Administration, then directed by Bowles. She participated in the 1948 Bowles gubernatorial campaign and then worked in his administration until 1951. That year, she went to New Delhi, where Bowles had been named ambassador, and served two years with the U.S. Information Agency. From 1953 to 1960, she was a cultural affairs and democratic development specialist with the Ford Foundation in New Delhi.
Her marriage to David Rawlings ended in divorce.
She leaves no immediate survivors.