Local land preservation activist Barry Lonik recently passed two personal conservation milestones: 100 projects completed and 7,000 acres protected from his direct involvement.
Lonik was the first executive director of Legacy Land Conservancy, based in Ann Arbor. He built the organization into a viable entity during his six and a half years in the position, following three and a half years volunteering on its board of trustees. The Conservancy’s first 14 land preservation projects were completed during his tenure.
Since 2002 Lonik has been president of Treemore Ecology and Land Services, Inc. The business’ primary focus has been staffing locally-funded land preservation programs in Webster, Scio and Ann Arbor Townships as a consultant. He has attracted nearly $13 million in federal grants and over $4 million from the State of Michigan to support farmland preservation projects across Washtenaw County.
Most of Lonik’s projects have been conservation easements—deed restrictions where landowners convey development rights but retain ownership and use. Lonik was the leading advocate for public funding to purchase development rights on farmland in Washtenaw County, and has been intimately involved with many successful local ballot proposals that will generated over $140 million of public funds to conserve land resources. Over 12,000 acres of farmland have been protected in Washtenaw County, one of the highest totals in Michigan.
Barry lives on a farm west of Dexter where he grows much of his own food and maintains a prairie on half of his two acre property. He hosts musical events in his 130 year old barn in Summer and house concerts in cooler months. He loves to hike, swim, sail, ski, run and bike the woods, waters and backroads near his home.