The Great Lakes Fishery Trust (GLFT) provides funding in four primary program areas to enhance, protect, and rehabilitate Great Lakes fishery resources. When warranted, the trust also funds special projects outside of our regularly scheduled competitive grant programs to assure timely response to important issues affecting the Great Lakes ecosystem.
History of Grantmaking
The trust was created in 1996, and the first round of grants were awarded in 1998. Since then, the trust has awarded over $79.6 million in funding through investments in fishing access, habitat protection and restoration, research, and creating stewards of the Great Lakes. Exhibit 1 highlights the total amount of funding granted in each of the program areas since the trust’s inception through 2021.
*Proposals funded outside of our routine, regularly scheduled, competitive grant programs to assure timely response to important issues affecting the Great Lakes ecosystem.
The annual average grantmaking from 2017 to 2021 was approximately
The trust has awarded over $16.4 million to increase fishing access on the Great Lakes through approximately 100 grants. This funding has supported the development of shore-based angling and tribal fishing access, fish cleaning stations, and communications work to inform Michigan residents about angling opportunities throughout the state.
ANNUAL ACCESS GRANT AWARDED
Below is the annual grant amount for the Access program from 2015 through 2020. The program did not accept applications in 2017 and will accept applications every other year beginning in 2020.
The trust has funded more than $28.7 million in Great Lakes fisheries research over the past 20 years, making the Research grant program the lead funding priority over the trust’s history. The trust periodically updates its research priorities to reflect current needs of the management community.
|Research Theme Area||Grant Awarded Amount|
|Fish health research||$7,157,825|
|Fish recruitment research||$4,750,911|
|Aquatic invasive species research, policy, and outreach||$2,423,829|
|Lake whitefish recruitment research||$2,317,774|
|Habitat information products||$1,870,850|
|Food web research||$1,501,399|
|Lake trout restoration research||$1,218,834|
|Ecosystem modeling research||$1,121,138|
ANNUAL RESEARCH GRANT AWARDED
Below highlights the annual award amount for the Research program from 2017 through 2021.
Since it was established, the trust has awarded approximately $16.0 million to preserve essential habitat; protect, restore, and stabilize important fish habitats; and increase habitat availability. These investments have included field inventories of barriers to fish passage, removal of dams and other barriers to fish passage, in-stream restoration, targeted acquisition to protect essential habitat, and other activities essential to protecting Great Lakes habitat.
ANNUAL HABITAT GRANT AWARDED
Below highlights the total grant awarded amount for the Habitat program from 2017 through 2021.
The trust has awarded approximately $15.5 million through the Great Lakes Stewardship grant program to supports efforts to increase awareness and understanding of the ecology of the Great Lakes so residents can be advocates for strategies that support long-term sustainability of the Great Lakes fisheries and become stewards of the Great Lakes. Between 2007 and 2017, the trust primarily supported stewardship efforts through the Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative (GLSI), a nonprofit created with the support of the trust to develop a sustainable infrastructure for delivery of place-based stewardship education in Michigan K–12 schools. The GLSI is an active participant in all 38 Michigan schools in which place-based education is embedded and is one of largest efforts in North America to establish and support place-based stewardship education (PBSE).
Since the initiative’s inception, the trust supported the GLSI in the following accomplishments:
ANNUAL STEWARDSHIP GRANT AWARDED
Below highlights the annual grant amount for the Stewardship program from 2016 through 2021. The Stewardship program did not accept applications in 2020 during the transition from the GLSI.
The GLFT has awarded approximately $3.1 million in grant funding outside of the traditional programs highlighted above. The mission of the Great Lakes Fishery Trust is to provide funding to enhance, protect, and rehabilitate the Great Lakes fishery. Generally, the trust does this through our four main program areas: Access, Habitat, Research, and Stewardship. However, if a proposal is outside the scope of activities identified in the request for proposals for the primary funding programs but conforms with the purposes of the trust and is consistent with trust policy, the project may still be eligible for funding. The GLFT is one of a limited number of organizations that can quickly seize unique opportunities to enhance the fishery, educate the public, protect valuable habitat, and secure critical fishing access. These unique opportunities are categorized as special projects.
ANNUAL SPECIAL PROJECTS AWARDED
Below highlights the total grant awarded amount for special projects from 2015 through 2020. No special projects were funded in 2017 or 2021.
Note: No special projects were funded in 2017 or 2021