Michigan Advisory Council
ELPC’s Michigan Advisory Council members bring strategic wisdom, stature and connections to the state’s policymakers, business leaders, educational leaders and other influentials.
Gary R. Rentrop (Chair)
is the founding Partner of the Rentrop & Morrison law firm in Bloomfield Hills, focusing on municipal, land use and zoning, historic preservation and estate planning law. Gary has extensive litigation and transactional law expertise on land use planning and real estate preservation/conservation issues. He serves on the Board of Trustees of the Americana Foundation and on the Litigation Approval Committee of the Environmental Law & Policy Center. He also served as the President of the Emmet County Lakeshore Association, among other civic engagements, and lives near Harbor Springs.
is CEO of the Growth Capital Network, based in Ann Arbor, which creates innovative technology programs for foundations and economic development agencies. Lauren was the North American Commercial Director for New Energy Finance, a leading provider of clean energy data and research, and Managing Director of the Cleantech Group where she oversaw investment and entrepreneur pipelines. She serves on NWF’s Great Lakes Leaders Council, Erb Institute Advisory Board, Zell Lurie Fund and Belle Capital Michigan, and is board chair of the Energy Innovation Business Council and Institute for Energy Innovation.
is an experienced land use and transactional attorney, and the founder and an officer of the Les Cheneaux Foundation, which conducts conservation, restoration and community development activities in the Upper Peninsula. George has extensive legal expertise on land use issues, including conservation easements. He serves on the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission and on the boards of the Lake Forest Open Lands Association and The Wetlands Initiative. He has served on the boards of The Nature Conservancy (Illinois Chapter), Corlands, Chicago Academy of Science, Little Traverse Conservancy and Openlands.
is Professor and Chair of the Department of Communication at Michigan State University. Jim specializes in the diffusion of innovations, and the use of diffusion principles to disseminate and effectively implement and sustain worthy innovations. He was Senior Scientist at Kaiser Permanente, and Principal Investigator for a National Cancer Institute Center of Excellence in Cancer Communication Research. He has directed research projects sponsored by the EPA, NSF, NCI and foundations. He directs the community engagement core for MSU’s Superfund Research Center, funded by the National Institute for Environmental Health Research.
is a Policy and Advocacy Manager at After School Matters which offers 1,200 out of school time programs to over 15,000 Chicago teens. He previously practiced real estate law with the Miller, Canfield, Paddock, and Stone firm in Ann Arbor. Kiff graduated from the University of Michigan Law School and the Gerald Ford School of Public Policy in 2014 and has a background in policy work and politics. He is strong supporter of the Great Lakes region and preservation of its natural resources. Kiff serves on the Board of Trustees of The Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, and Greenhills School in Ann Arbor.
is the former Mayor of Grand Rapids who focused on making the city much more sustainable. He currently works part-time as community sustainability director at Grand Valley State University. Before serving as Mayor, George was a City Commissioner and served as President and CEO of Pilgrim Manor Retirement Community. He was previously a Director of the Community Leadership Institute at Aquinas College and a minister at Heartside Ministry in Grand Rapids.
is an attorney and real estate developer who lives in Bloomfield Hills and Leland. Add is a committed philanthropist supporting habitat and wildlife preservation and restoration, as well as arts organizations throughout Michigan. He and his wife Debby are engaged with historic preservation activities and have recently put a historic preservation easement on their beautiful 1848 farm house and outbuildings, as well as the land, in Bloomfield Hills.
is a trustee and former President of the Michigan Nature Association. She is a retired librarian and is a member of the Oakland (County) Audubon Society, the Leelanau Conservancy and several other environmental groups. Debby and her husband Addison have recently put a historic preservation easement on their beautiful 1848 farm house and outbuildings, as well as the land, in Bloomfield Hills.
Thomas S. Porter
is an entrepreneur and investor experienced in founding and funding early stage companies. Tom divides his time between Great Lakes environmental issues through his family’s foundation and entrepreneurial ventures through his advisory firm Trillium Ventures. As a venture philanthropist, Tom applies his business experience to support big ideas that can make a difference for the environment in the short term. He co-founded the Michigan Climate Action Network and the Council of Michigan Foundation’s Green & Blue Network, and serves on the University of Michigan’s National Advisory Board for Tech Transfer. Tom founded EDF Ventures and was Executive-in-Residence at the Zell Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies.
Lorna Puttkammer Straus
is a Professor Emerita in organismal biology and anatomy at the University of Chicago. Lorna served as Assistant Dean and Dean for Students (1967—1982), as Dean of Admissions and as a University Marshal. Lorna's family has come to Mackinac Island since 1891, and she now lives there full time. She is a strong supporter of natural spaces and historic preservation. Lorna serves on the Board of Trustees and is Chair of the Health and Medical Board of Advisors of the Mackinac Island Community Foundation.
lives and works in Douglas, MI and Evanston, IL as a philanthropic advisor to family foundations. Her current philanthropy work focuses on food waste, food systems, climate change and criminal justice reform. She serves as a strategic advisor to the Vital Lands program at the Grand Victoria Foundation, a fellow in the Field Museum’s Science Action Center and a volunteer for Freshwater Futures. Tracey has served for a decade as a board member and advisor to the Saugatuck Dunes Coastal Alliance, working to preserve and protect the lower Kalamazoo River and Saugatuck Dunes coastal region.
served as General Manager of Governmental & Public Affairs and in other senior regulatory, legislative and public affairs positions for BP America before moving home to Harbor Springs. Gary worked closely with BP's solar, wind and biofuels businesses and has extensive energy and communications experience. He was previously director of state government affairs for Detroit Edison in the 1980s and worked on the Michigan Senate staff and for the Michigan Manufacturers Association. Gary is currently instructing and coaching communication knowledge and skills.
is the Founder and CEO of Enovation Partners, which consults with energy and infrastructure firms on strategy, operational improvement, renewable energy, sustainability, smart grid and technology commercialization. Bob has over 25 years of experience working with utilities, suppliers, private equity and government. He lives in Harbor Springs and in Winnetka, Illinois. Prior to Enovation, he founded and led the energy practice of Bridge Strategy Group, and was a consultant with Booz & Co, Renaissance Worldwide and CSC Planmetrics.
Ex-Officio: Knute Nadelhoffer (ELPC Board of Directors and ELPC Science Advisory Council)
is a Professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Michigan and is Director of the University of Michigan Biological Station in Pellston where he coordinates programs of research, training and outreach in environmental sciences. Knute has published more than 100 journal articles and book chapters on ecosystem ecology, global climate change and terrestrial biogeochemistry, and he is a leader bringing together Midwest scientists to advocate strong policy actions for climate change solutions. He was previously a Senior Scientist at the Ecosystems Center of the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, MA and a Program Director for the National Science Foundation’s Ecosystem Studies Program.