Consumers Energy provides Keep it Cool grant donation

consumers-energyThe Consumers Energy Foundation has awarded the Muskegon River Watershed Assembly (MRWA) a $30,000 grant to support the MRWA’s Muskegon River KEEP IT COOL fundraising campaign. Campaign funds will be used to increase the MRWA’s conservation impact and organizational capacity.

Proceeds from the KEEP IT COOL campaign will enable the MRWA to: 1) Expand existing and implement new programs that will benefit the long-term health of the Muskegon River; 2) Strengthen immediate watershed improvement project capabilities; 3) Increase staff capacity to address priority watershed needs in a more timely manner; 4) Provide improved support for MRWA operations, education/outreach, and research; and 5) Ensure increased presence and effectiveness in the watershed working with stakeholders.

“We are committed to protecting our state’s natural resources for generations to come, and we’re pleased to work with the Watershed Assembly to help the Muskegon River,” said David Mengebier, president of the Consumers Energy Foundation. “A national survey recently named Consumers Energy as an ‘environmental champion,’ and our involvement in the Muskegon River watershed demonstrates our commitment to sustainability will continue.”

The goal of the Muskegon River KEEP IT COOL campaign is to raise $900,000 to help cover MRWA 5-year funding needs. To date, including the Consumers Energy Foundation $30,000 grant, the MRWA has raised nearly $390,000 toward its campaign goal. MRWA Executive Director, Gary Noble said, “The MRWA is extremely pleased to have the Consumers Energy Foundation as a supporting partner of our campaign. The campaign is in its early stages, and with this recent grant, we’re now at 43% of our fundraising goal.”

Noble also stated, “The MRWA is very grateful to all of our other campaign contributors thus far, which include the Wege Foundation ($100,000), U.S. EPA/Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Program ($85,000), Fremont Area Community Foundation ($50,000), Community Foundation for Muskegon County ($45,000), Dogwood Foundation ($30,000), Osceola County Community Foundation ($21,000), Meijer ($10,000), Haworth ($7,500), Michigan Dept. of Natural Resources-Habitat Improvement Account ($7,986), U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service ($2,000), and individuals/organizations ($1,000).”

The Consumers Energy Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Consumers Energy. In 2013, Consumers Energy, its foundation, employees and retirees donated more than $8 million to Michigan’s nonprofit organizations. The MRWA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization located in Big Rapids, MI in partnership with Ferris State University.

The MRWA is dedicated to the preservation, protection, restoration, and sustainable use of the Muskegon River, the land it drains, and the life it supports, through educational, scientific, and conservation initiatives. More information about the MRWA is available from their website at or by calling 231-591-2324.