The Great Lakes Fishery Trust celebrated ten years of grantmaking on October 10, 2008, at Northwestern Michigan College’s Great Lakes Campus in Traverse City. More than 100 people attended to pay tribute to the historic settlement that, at that time, had provided more than $40 million in grants for fisheries research, habitat protection and enhancement, fishing access, and education, as well as to the hundreds of individuals—trustees, staff, and grantees—who have carried this work forward.
Attendees connected with friends and colleagues, tasted local food and libations, listened to great local music, and enjoyed the great view of Grand Traverse Bay surrounded by beautiful fall colors. Michigan Department of Natural Resources Director and GLFT Board Chair Rebecca Humphries led the program for the evening, which featured the first public reading by author Jerry Dennis from his new book, Watcher on the Shore, and a preview of the documentary film, "The Great Lakes: The World’s Freshwater Seas," both of which were partially funded by the GLFT. Tributes were given to Jim Ekdahl, GLFT board member from 2000 to 2008, and Jack Bails, who recently retired after serving as the GLFT Manager for 12 years. Many GLFT grantees were also showcased, including the Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative, the Muskegon River Watershed Initiative, the Boardman River Dams project, and a variety of research projects.