Our Work


A thriving Great Lakes and healthy water that all life can rely on, today and far into the future. We aspire to be a voice for the lakes and to support the voices of the communities that depend on the lakes and their waters.


To protect, conserve, and restore the Great Lakes, ensuring healthy water in the lakes and in our communities for all generations of people and wildlife. We advance our mission as advocates for policies that support the lakes and communities, by building the research, analysis, and partnerships that motivate action, and by educating and uniting people as a voice for the Great Lakes.


We value community, relationships, courage, integrity, optimism, and the principles of justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion in all our work.

Our Strategy

We envision two broad positive outcomes for people and the lakes:   

  • People and communities can safely enjoy and rely on all the benefits the lakes have to offer, from safe, affordable drinking water to recreation opportunities such as swimming, boating, and fishing.  
  • Every community that depends on the lakes is heard and included in the decisions that affect the lakes and their community.   

Our approach includes four core strategies. They are:

Water Advocacy   

  • Ensuring safe, clean, and affordable drinking water, and protecting the lakes and communities from polluted wastewater and stormwater   
  • Reducing agricultural pollution 
  • Stopping invasive species 
  • Restoring the health and resilience of the Great Lakes 
  • Safeguarding hard-fought Great Lakes protections 

Local Partnerships   

  • Building more capacity for Great Lakes protection in communities, using our skills, resources, and expertise in support of local leaders and networks   


  • Growing a credible and lasting voice for the Great Lakes by motivating tens of thousands of people each year to take action to protect the lakes    

Operations & Fundraising   

  • Supporting a strong staff and board of directors and ensuring fiscal health, which enables the Alliance to advance our mission and vision   

Read more about our recent successes and impact. Read our strategic plan fact sheet.

Our People 

Our staff are headquartered in Chicago, with additional offices in Michigan, Ohio, and Washington, DC.  

Our Board of Directors represents a wide range of interests and expertise from around the Great Lakes region.  

Our work is made possible by our generous supporters

Learn more 

Learn more about our impact, our current campaigns, how to get involved, and our staff, board, and finances