About Us

We’re wild about rivers… and so much more.


Since 1968, Conservation Resource Alliance (CRA) has been the go-to group for grassroots re-wilding efforts. Healthy waters. Rich wildlife. The way nature intended. That’s what our mud-soaked boots stand for – and that’s all we do.

Initially, the CRA was part of a nationwide network of Resource Conservation and Development councils. Since then, CRA has emerged as one of the premier conservation nonprofit corporations in the state, proudly serving northwest lower Michigan.

As wonderful as our state is, Michigan’s scenery and natural resources are not automatically preserved or enhanced. Fortunately, CRA has emerged as a coalition-building partner to help bridge financial and ideological gaps that affect the wild places Michiganders love.

One special we step in is through the CRA River Care Program. The River Care Program ensures that natural resource professionals maintain a consistent and prioritized action plan for each river in the organization’s region.

River Care professionals not only find and repair physical problems before they become worse, they also team with local agencies, residents, and interest group representatives for fact-based conversations. These cross-functional teams can speak openly and affect change in an agile, efficient and transparent way.

Our Mission

To restore and revitalize rivers and habitats in Northern Michigan through active community partnerships, focusing on sustained, boots-on-the- ground solutions for a healthy, resilient Great Lakes Region.

Our Vision

To lead communities toward healthy waters and wildlife for the future of Michigan and the Great Lakes.

Our Values

Firmly Based in Science  –  Results Oriented  –  Agile  –  Collaborative  –  Trustworthy

A Unique Network

Staffed with wildlife biologists, fisheries biologists, engineers and field technicians, CRA works with landowners to plan, locate funding options, cut through red tape, and implement programs to enhance the habitat value and beauty of the region.

Locally Driven Solutions

CRA is known for its collaborative land-use solutions among private landowners, government agencies and commercial businesses. The intent of CRA is not to litigate to prevent development, but to foster locally-driven solutions that will preserve or develop land in a positive manner for all parties involved. Instead of promoting further regulations or lawsuits, our aim is to foster partnerships in order to understand consequences, alter behavior, and create win-win cooperative efforts.

Understanding The Legal Landscape

Our understanding of regulations and funding control help many groups take advantage of opportunities, mobilize resources, minimize red tape, cut through bureaucratic layers, touch all bases, avoid surprises, and see that change proceeds fairly for all parties involved.