Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy

Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy news and reports.

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Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy
The Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy conserves natural land and open space -- including forests, wetlands, meadows, agricultural lands, and places of scenic beauty -- to provide habitat for wildlife and to enrich the lives of people.

Giving Options

 Donate To SMLC

How Can I Protect My Land?
SMLC Nature Preserves
SMLC Community Organic Garden
Join our Email List

SMLC Local Chapters:
Monroe County Chapter
Superior Township Chapter

We're Hiring!
Position Available: Part-Time Office Specialist

Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy is looking to hire an Office Specialist. The position requires an Associate’s degree in Business or related field and experience in database management and office management.  Bookkeeping experience is desirable. This is a part-time, non-exempt position. For the full job posting click here. 

If interested, please send a cover letter, resume, and three (3) references to:  
Jill A. Lewis, Executive Director, Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy, Position will be open until filled, however all applications received by March 2, 2020 will be reviewed.  No unsolicited phone calls please. SMLC is an equal opportunity employer.


Welcome sign at SMLC's Conservancy Farm headquarters. Photo by Wendy Pellerito.


Many Thanks!

A special thanks to all of our donors, funders, partners and supporters for all of the gifts you gave to Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy of your time, talents and contributions last year (2019).

We are especially grateful to the following SMLC funders and partners for their continued support and recognition that Conservation is in our Nature:

  • Advanced Disposal
  • Amazon Smile
  • Boisvenu & Company
  • Busch’s Fresh Food Market
  • Capstone Tax & Financial
  • Country Garden Club of Northville
  • Domino’s Pizza
  • Ducks Unlimited 
  • EarthShare (SMLC is a member of this workplace giving federation)
  • ITC Holdings
  • Jackson Lenawee Washtenaw Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area
  • James A. and Faith Knight Foundation
  • King & MacGregor Environmental
  • Kroger Community Rewards
  • Michigan Environmental Land Conservancy*
  • Michigan Nature Association
  • Oakland County Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area
  • PGE
  • Pfizer Foundation
  • Plymouth Orchards
  • Pittsfield Township Government
  • Reynolds Water Conditioning Co.
  • Six Rivers Land Conservancy
  • Speckhard-Knight Charitable Foundation*
  • State of Michigan DNR
  • Superior Land Preservation Society*
  • Superior Township Government*
  • The City of Ann Arbor’s Greenbelt Program*
  • The Green Ribbon Initiative
  • The Nature Conservancy
  • US Fish and Wildlife Service – Partners for Fish and Wildlife
  • Washtenaw Audubon Society*
  • Washtenaw County Natural Areas Preservation Program*
  • William and Lisa Ford Foundation*
  • Yardeners of St. Clair Shores

* Superior Greenway Expansion Project-Phase II (SGEP-II) funder

We would also like to express appreciation to all of the renewed and new members of SMLC’s Eco-Logical Leadership Club (ELLC).  Thank you for your initiative, generosity, and friendship.  Through your leadership, you are demonstrating that sustaining SMLC’s capacity to do the work of our mission is Elevating Local Land Conservation.  Thank You!

Finally, to everyone who helped make our dream come true, by funding SMLC’s purchase of the new Secrest Nature Preserve through the SGEP-II, we are deeply appreciative of your support.  SMLC acquired the property on December 30, 2019 and we couldn’t have done it without you - thank you, thank you, thank you! 

Grayhead coneflower by Wendy Pellerito


SMLC Acquires 80 acres in the
Northern Superior Greenway at end of 2019

We are excited to announce that SMLC completed the purchase of 80 acres of woods, wetlands, and open space at the end of 2019.  Through our partnership with the City of Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation Commission, we have added this significant piece to the Superior Greenway, a 2,800-acre wildlife and public recreation corridor.  

From the Press Release:
SMLC acquired the property from the Marissa A. Stepien Living Trust and Washtenaw County acquired a conservation easement on the property.  The City was a major funder of both acquisitions.  SMLC intends to name the new preserve, the Secrest Nature Preserve, in honor of a local family who have been instrumental in supporting land protection efforts in Superior Township and across the region for many years.

Click here to read the full Press Release.

Oak-hickory forest at the Secrest Nature Preserve. Photo by Mark Even.


Preserve Closure Update:
Sibley Prairie Nature Preserve - West Prairie Closed for the Season

December 9, 2019

We have closed the West Prairie preserve for winter 2019-2020. This preserve is prone to flooding, which is the nature of the unique wet prairie community that we are protecting and restoring. In the meantime, you can learn about what makes Lakeplain Wet Prairie special through the Michigan Natural Features Inventory. Check back here for a re-opening announcement in summer 2020.

A view of lakeplain prairie in Brownstown Township. Photo by Charles Scott.

2019 Picnic at the Farm - Recap

Many thanks goes to SMLC’s Picnic Sponsors and Leadership Donor!!


SMLC's 2019 Award Recipients (click here to read the press release):

Jack R. Smiley Award:  Richard (Rick) Simek, past SMLC Board President

Executive Director Legacy Award:  Jill A. Lewis, Executive Director

Directors' Award:  Jonathan (Jon) Trevathan, past SMLC Board President

Legacy Volunteer Award:  Charles Scott

2019 Volunteer of the Year Award:  Martha (Marty) Davis-Merritts

2018 Volunteer of the Year Award:  Mark Even


Give to SMLC

"Southeast Michigan: a beautiful place where people and nature
coexist in healthy, sustainable balance."

SMLC's vision statement expresses how we feel about this special place we call home. Preserving natural areas and farmlands is good for all of us. SMLC is doing our part: more than 3,400 acres have been protected in this region through our efforts. You too can do your part by giving to the SMLC "We Care" Campaign.

To make a safe and secure online donation to SMLC, click here

To download a printable form you can mail to our office along with your personal check made payable to "Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy" click here 

You can continue the momentum and help SMLC become even stronger:

Click here to read SMLC's latest appeal letter (PDF)

Click here to read our Spring 2019 Landmarks newsletter (PDF)


Springhill Nature Preserve, Superior Greenway, Washtenaw County.
Photo by Charles Scott

Kroger Community Rewards

You can support SMLC every time you use
your Kroger Plus Card.

It's easy to sign up!

Click here to link or re-link
your Kroger Plus Card to SMLC

Volunteers Needed!

Interested in volunteering?  Opportunities include: stewardship workdays at nature preserves, mailing parties at the office, and helping maintain our historic farmhouse. Here are some other ways you can get involved:

Stewardship Assistant – Assist SMLC Stewardship staff with management of our Superior Greenway nature preserves. Includes trail upkeep, invasive species management, grounds maintenance, and more.

Conservancy Farmhouse Beautifying and Upkeep – Responsibilities include monthly and annual cleaning and upkeep of our historic Conservancy Farmhouse. SMLC will provide cleaning supplies and direction regarding historic house elements.

Preserve Watcher – Monitor SMLC nature preserve property conditions, assist with minor trail maintenance, and report findings bi-monthly. Needed at: Heritage Oaks, Pittsfield Stream Corridor, and Springhill nature preserves.

Contact Julie McLaughlin, Stewardship and Outreach Specialist, to discuss volunteer interest at or 734-484-6565


Local Chapter News:

Superior Township Chapter

The Superior Township Chapter is dedicated to supporting SMLC's conservation efforts in Superior Township.

Click here to read the 2019 Superior Township Chapter Update Newsletter (color PDF).

See the Calendar of Events below for Superior Township Chapter and SMLC events, posted as they are scheduled.

For more information about the Superior Township Chapter, click here or contact Brenda Baker at or Bill Secrest at (734) 482-5957

Downy Woodpecker

Lots of Downy Woodpeckers make Superior Township their home. Photo by Charles Scott

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Sign up for SMLC Events, keep up with the latest SMLC news, and hear stories about the benefit of SMLC's work at our new Facebook page. If you are new to Facebook, signup is free. If you are already on Facebook, you know what to do - "like" us and see what's new at SMLC.

Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy  |  8383 Vreeland Road, Superior Township, MI 48198  |  (734) 484-6565
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