The Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition which administers the Healthy Lakes, Healthy Lives public awareness campaign was launched with the generous support of the Wege Foundation and Peter Wege, a Michigan philanthropist and former CEO of Steelcase Inc.
Since its inception in 1968, the Wege Foundation has supported a number of causes, including the environment, education, health care and community development.
In May 2004, the Foundation helped to convene a meeting of more than 70 leading environmentalists, ecologists, scientists and academicians. During the two-day summit, these leading conservationists worked together to outline a plan for restoring and protecting America’s greatest freshwater resource, the Great Lakes.
That conference and the ensuing report that came out of it—“Healing Our Waters: An Agenda for Great Lakes Restoration”—provided the inspiration to form an unprecedented coalition, whose mission was to push for a comprehensive plan to restore the Great Lakes and the federal funding needed to implement it.
Learn more about the formation of the Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition:
Read about the formation of the coalition in the following news releases:
- National Agenda for Great Lakes Restoration Drafted (May 27, 2004)
- National Agenda for Great Lakes Restoration Calls for Strong Federal Leadership and Funding (September 16, 2004)
- Great Lakes Coalition Launched with $5 Million Grant (October 14, 2004)
Read the 2004 report, “Healing Our Waters: An Agenda for Great Lakes Restoration,” either in full, or download the individual chapters of the report:
- The Vision [2.3MB PDF] The driving force behind this initiative.
- The Backdrop [372KB PDF] Our magnificent Great Lakes.
- The Process [532KB PDF] How the agenda was developed.
- The Important Federal Role [532KB PDF] Why the federal government needs to act now.
- The Agenda [1.2MB PDF] A plan for restoring and preserving our Great Lakes.
- Background [1.9MB PDF] Detailed recommendations.
- The Next Step [360KB PDF] The need for a larger, cooperative effort.
- Participants [2.5MB PDF] Leaders who participated in the development of the recommendations.
- Acknowledgements [604KB PDF] Special thanks to those who helped make the report a reality.
You can also read about the ad campaign.