September 27, 2016

Sierra Club Road Show Brings Line 5 and 2016 Elections Info to U.P.

Sierra Club Michigan staff and volunteers are traveling to the Upper Peninsula on Oct. 24 and 25 for back-to-back presentations in Marquette and Sault Ste. Marie on the Line 5 threat to the Great Lakes and the importance of the 2016 elections to environmental protection.  The events are free and open to the public. Please RSVP to

The “road show” will feature Chapter Chair David Holtz, who will offer an overview of the danger posed by Enbridge’s 64-year-old, leak-prone Line 5 which runs under the Straits of Mackinac and Sierra Club’s efforts to get this oil pipeline shut down.  Chapter Political and Legislative Director Mike Berkowitz will explore the 2016 election landscape and what U.P. residents need to know about the issues and candidates.

Each event begins at 6:30pm with mingling and a light reception followed by the program at 7pm.  Event details are below:

Marquette:  Mon., Oct. 24, 6:30-8:30pm – Community Room , Peter White Library, 217 N Front St

Sault Ste. Marie: Tues, Oct. 25, 6:30-8:30pm – Crawford Hall, Room CRW 205, 650 W Easterday Ave.

September 26, 2016

Sierra Club Endorses Michigan Legislative and Local Candidates

September 26, 2016                                       

Mike Berkowitz

Sierra Club Endorses Michigan Legislative and Local Candidates

The Sierra Club Michigan Chapter, a non-partisan environmental protection organization, today announced its third and final round of candidate endorsements in Michigan’s upcoming state house and local elections. These endorsements come after a thorough review by local and state committees within the Sierra Club’s volunteer leadership.

“These Sierra Club endorsed candidates are champions who demonstrate strong leadership in promoting clean air, clean water, cleaner energy and a healthier Michigan,” said Mike Berkowitz, Political Director of the Sierra Club Michigan Chapter. “Our members are committed to making sure voters are aware of the strong environmental values of these endorsed candidates. We will work hard to ensure they are successful in the upcoming election.”

Michigan Sierra Club endorsed the following candidates for State Representative:
HD 15: Abdullah Hammound
HD 23: Darrin Camilleri
HD 30: Mike Notte
HD 38: Amy McCusker
HD 52: Donna Lasinski
HD 59: Carol Higgins
HD 61: John Fisher
HD 64: Ron Brooks
HD 86: Lynn Mason
HD 92: Terry Sabo
HD 106: Robert Kennedy

Sierra Club also endorsed the following candidates for local races:
Vicki Barnett for Oakland County Executive
Julia Pulver for Oakland County Commission District 1
Pete Ponzetti for Genessee County Commission District 6
Vicki Dobbins for River Rouge School Board

Sierra Club also encourages people in Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, and Washtenaw Counties to vote YES on the regional transit millage.

“Sierra Club volunteers from the organization’s 80,000 Michigan members and supporters will work with endorsed candidates in their own districts, identifying and recruiting other likely voters who are concerned about the state’s environmental and energy policies” said Richard Morley Barron, Political Chair of the Sierra Club Michigan Chapter.

“Sierra Club is a grassroots organization and our political strength is in educating and mobilizing environmental voters,” said Barron.  “Given the unprecedented challenges facing our Great Lakes and our climate, as well as the recent weakening of legal protections for our environment, we are committed to implementing the most robust effort of any election year in our history.  The times demand it and our members expect it.”

The Michigan Chapter’s Political Committee conducts thorough reviews of all candidates based on their environmental history, voting records and policy positions through candidate interviews, voting scorecards, and responses to candidate questionnaires.

A full list of candidates and ballot proposals endorsed by the Michigan Sierra Club, including federal, state and local candidates, is available at the following website:

About the Sierra Club
The Sierra Club is America’s largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization, with more than 2.4 million members and supporters nationwide, and over 80,000 in Michigan. In addition to creating opportunities for people of all ages, levels and locations to have meaningful outdoor experiences, the Sierra Club works to safeguard the health of our communities, protect wildlife, and preserve our remaining wild places through grassroots activism, public education, lobbying, and litigation. For more information, visit

Paid for by Michigan Sierra PAC (109 E. Grand River Ave. Lansing, MI 48906)

September 6, 2016

Sierra Club and GVSU Present "Politics and the Environment" Oct. 4

Politics and the Environment
Tuesday, Oct. 4, 7pm
GVSU’s DeVos Center (Room 136E), 401 W. Fulton, Grand Rapids
The event is free, but seating is limited. RSVP by Oct. 1 to

Sierra Club’s Greater Grand Rapids Committee has teamed up with Grand Valley State University’s School of Communications to offer “Politics and the Environment,” a look at environmental issues in Michigan and their role in this year’s elections.

Following the presentation, the televised 2016 Vice Presidential Debate will be livestreamed at 9pm.

 “Politics and the Environment” will provide information voters need to make the right choices for the environment on Election Day. Presenters Mike Berkowitz, the Sierra Club Michigan Chapter’s Political and Legislative Director, and Richard Barron, the Chapter’s Political Committee Chair, will discuss the stance of local candidates and how the fight for clean air, water, energy and natural resources could be impacted by the 2016 elections. They will also give an overview of which legislators have voted to help or hurt the environment through various measures this past year, and what to expect in the fall state legislative session.

This non-partisan talk is open to the public as part of a GVSU Communications course, “Media and Society: Politics and the Presidency,” taught by Film & Video Professor John Philbin.  Philbin teaches the course every four years as a review of how presidential campaigns have been depicted in Hollywood films since 1960 and to critique media coverage of the current election.