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Meet Our Water Leaders

Michael A. Reuter


Michael A. Reuter

Director of Water, North America

Follow Michael on Twitter @michaelareuter

Michael Reuter, director of The Nature Conservancy’s Water Program in North America, has worked throughout the U.S. and globally for more than two decades to establish and improve water management in support of conservation and the sustainable and equitable use of our vital rivers, lakes and aquifers.

Read Michael A. Reuter's Full Biography

Michael in the News

Articles by Michael

Publications

Follow Michael on Twitter @michaelareuter

Michael Reuter, director of The Nature Conservancy’s Water Program in North America, has worked throughout the U.S. and globally for more than two decades to establish and improve water management in support of conservation and the sustainable and equitable use of our vital rivers, lakes and aquifers.

Since the early 1990s Michael has focused on finding shared solutions that integrate environmental goals with the needs of agriculture, navigation, flood control, and other business and community interests – a systems perspective that has ultimately helped the Conservancy define its goals for water in the U.S. and around the world. Michael led the creation of the Great Rivers Partnership (GRP) in 2004, which expanded the Conservancy’s water programs globally to more than a dozen countries in South America, Asia and Africa. Through the GRP, the Conservancy focused on building strong partnerships with governments and business to design and achieve a broad set of sustainable and equitable solutions to recurring water management challenges. Michael and his colleagues designed and advanced comprehensive, collaborative approaches to management of the Yangtze and Mekong rivers in Asia, the Niger, Zambezi, and Ogooué rivers in Africa, the Colorado and Mississippi rivers in North America, and the Magdalena, Paraguay-Parana and Tapajós rivers in South America.

Michael refocused on North America in 2014 to build a Water Program that engages and supports more than 50 state chapters and 400 water staff as well as a wide variety of external partners working on some of the nation’s most significant water challenges, including protecting water supplies, reducing flood risk, building multi-purpose infrastructure, and conserving vital ecosystems.

Michael is a founding member of the steering committee for America’s Watershed Initiative—an effort that has engaged more than 400 organizations in establishing a vision and integrated management approach for the entire Mississippi River Basin as a national and global model. Michael has also filled leadership roles in national and multi-national initiatives such as the Keystone Field to Market Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture, the International Society for River Science, U.S. Water Partnership, and the Institute for Principled Leadership in Public Service. He has received the Silver Eagle Award from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and One Conservancy Award from The Nature Conservancy. He holds a B.S. degree in Agricultural Economics from Iowa State University and a Master of Liberal Studies from Bradley University.

Michael lives in the St. Louis area with his wife and three children.

Follow Michael on Twitter

@michaelareuter

“Maybe the duck hunter, farmer, construction worker, gas station attendant, boater and hotel and restaurant owners are not so disconnected, after all.”

— Michael A. Reuter 

Michael was interviewed by the Wall Street Journal concerning the release of the first-ever Report Card for America's Watershed. ​

Listen to Michael talk about the need for collaboration to solve freshwater issues on the Freshwater Talk podcast.

Watch a video to see Michael explain the North America Water Program during the World Water Summit in Chicago in November 2014.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch published one of Michael's opinion pieces — Water's Fiscal Cliff is no 'Pretty Waterfall'.

Read a blog Michael wrote that focuses on advancements in river management in China. 

Michael weighs in on the need to invest in the nation's water resources infrastructure in ways that produce environmental benefits.

Areas of Expertise

  • Large river systems
  • Floodplain restoration
  • Flooding
  • Sustainable agriculture
  • Green infrastructure
  • Integrated river management

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