Michael Reuter is director of the Midwest Region and member of the North America Council for The Nature Conservancy, a global environmental nonprofit working to create a world where people and nature can thrive. The Midwest Team is focused on the Great Lakes and Mississippi River systems, and attendant climate, food, water and energy issues encountered in working landscapes and cities across the region.
For more than 25 years in the U.S. and around the world, Michael has designed and collaborated in systems-based approaches to large-scale societal challenges, generating tangible, lasting impacts for the environment and the people that rely on it. He has extensive experience facilitating sustainable and equitable use of our vital rivers, lakes and aquifers, and has focused on shared solutions that integrate nature with agriculture, navigation, flood control, and other needs of people and communities. This approach underpins many of The Nature Conservancy's goals for water conservation around the world.
Michael led the creation of the Great Rivers Partnership (GRP) in 2004, which expanded TNC'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 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 also led the creation and development of the North America Water Program which engaged and supported 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 board member of America’s Watershed Initiative—an effort that 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 Field to Market Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture, the International Society for River Science, U.S. Water Partnership, and Institute for Principled Leadership in Public Service.
Michael received the Silver Eagle Award from 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.