Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy
Our mission is protecting natural, scenic, and farm lands – and advancing stewardship – now and for future generations.
For nearly 25 years, the Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy has protected and cared for the region’s natural, scenic, farm and forest lands.
With the support of individual donors, foundations and volunteers, and the partnership of local, state, and federal agencies, we have protected over 39,000 acres of land and more than 121 miles of shoreline along the region’s exceptional rivers, lakes and streams.
Fully accredited by the Land Trust Association, the Conservancy is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization with our own by-laws, policies, board, budget and staff. Our service area includes Antrim, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska and Manistee Counties.
We focus our land conservation efforts to permanently protect crucial wildlife habitat and corridors; critical watersheds, which protect the water quality of our region; unique high-quality farm lands; valuable forestland; and ecologically significant dunes along Lake Michigan’s beautiful and endangered shore. We protect land in several ways:
By working with landowners to permanently protect private land through voluntary conservation easements
By acquiring high quality natural lands by purchase or donation to create Conservancy owned nature preserves which are open to the public
By assisting local units of government in creating or expanding public parks and natural areas that result in enhanced public access to nature and improved recreational opportunities
By providing technical assistance to local units of government with the administration of farmland protection programs
Our conservation mission is an investment in our community and the generous gifts from our supporters have leveraged over $75 million in state and federal grants to our region.
We think about the area we serve in terms of watersheds, coasts, scenic transportation corridors, and vital clusters of our region’s working farms and forests. By considering our community in this way, we are able to evaluate how certain land uses and protection efforts will impact the things our community values – access to our majestic shorelines; opportunities for hiking, birding, canoeing, biking, fishing, and other outdoor activities; safe, clean water; respect for private property rights; and a healthy economy.
Among our staff, our land protection experts use a variety of conservation tools to protect significant natural and working lands. Our stewardship team documents natural and man-made features on protected land, monitors over 200 conservation easements and maintains our 34 nature preserves. Our fund development and outreach teams creatively build relationships with individuals and foundations to secure the resources necessary to protect water quality, natural lands, working lands, scenic views, and places where people can enjoy nature. On every level, our work is supported by hundreds of volunteer colleagues.
Our Mission is protecting significant natural, scenic and farm lands – and advancing stewardship – now and for all future generations.
For nearly 25 years, GTRLC has been entrusted to preserve and protect this cherished corner of Michigan through ongoing conservation and stewardship programs.
Our values are:
PRESERVATION: The central focus of all our activities is to protect – and in some cases manage –selected natural, scenic and farm lands in our region, forever.
EXCELLENCE: We are committed to excellence in the conduct of our responsibilities. We maintain best practice standards in all facets of our work, and continually strive to improve our knowledge and abilities.
TEAMWORK: We work together in the spirit of cooperation, collaboration, creativity and innovation.
RESPECT: Our relationships are built on a foundation of respect. We value open dialogue and those who hold differing views or opinions.
INTEGRITY: We conduct our work with integrity in words and actions. As a result, communities trust our organization.