Dave Dempsey
Dave Dempsey has 22 years’ experience in environmental policy. He has published two well-received books on the conservation and environmental history of Michigan and the Great Lakes ecosystem. Dave is also the author of the forthcoming biography of former Michigan Governor William Milliken.

Dave's experience in the not-for-profit sector includes service as Program Director and Great Lakes Policy Consultant for Clean Water Action, and as Executive Director and policy consultant at the Michigan Environmental Council - a coalition of over 65 environmental organizations with a combined total of more than 200,000 members.

Dave has been active in environmental matters since 1982 and has extensive governmental experience as well. He served as environmental advisor to Michigan Governor James J. Blanchard from 1983-89. President Clinton appointed him to serve on the Great Lakes Fishery Commission in 1994, where he served until 2001. In 2003 Governor Jennifer Granholm appointed him to the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund Board.

Now a resident of St. Paul, Minnesota, Dave was born and spent most of his life in Michigan. He is the author of two acclaimed books on the environment, including "Ruin and Recovery: Michigan’s Rise as a Conservation Leader." Published by University of Michigan Press, this environmental history of Michigan was described by George Weeks of the Detroit News as “a remarkable book.” The Detroit Free Press selected it as one of the best books on Michigan topics of 2001. In spring 2004, Michigan State University Press published Dempsey’s second book, "On the Brink: The Great Lakes in the 21st Century." The Traverse City Record Eagle said it “provides a resilient and expansive framework on which to hang a growing environmental consciousness – and conscience – about these five spectacular inland seas.”

Dave has a bachelor of arts degree from Western Michigan University and a master’s degree in resource development from Michigan State University, and has served as an adjunct instructor at MSU in environmental policy. He enjoys the outdoors as a hiker, birdwatcher, summertime swimmer and in-Great Lakes Basin tourist. Dave has special affection for the Great Lakes shoreline, including sand dunes, and the great forests of the upper Great Lakes region.