Red Cliff becomes first Tribal Nation to serve as a signatory to the Joint Strategic Plan for Management of Great Lakes Fisheries

The Red Cliff Tribe has officially become a signatory to the Joint Strategic Plan for Management of Great Lakes Fisheries after Gaa-Miskwaabikaang Vice-Chairman Rick Peterson signed the Plan on October 18 at the Council of Lakes Committees meeting in Detroit, Michigan.

This marks the first time that an individual Tribe has been invited to sign the plan and take their rightful place at the table with the eight US States, Province of Ontario, Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission, Chippewa Ottawa Resource Authority, and 1854 Treaty Authority as agencies that share management authority across the Great Lakes. Historically, US-based Tribes were only afforded representation indirectly through inter-tribal agencies. However, since 2015 Red Cliff has been pursuing recognition of its independent management authority and a seat on the various committees charged with implementing the Joint Strategic Plan. The Tribe officially submitted for membership in 2018.

“In 2018 we began this process of seeking official representation on this commission and our acceptance is historic,” said Vice Chairman Peterson. “With the Red Cliff Band becoming the first Tribal Nation to become a signatory to the Joint Strategic Plan for the Management of Great Lakes Fisheries, we now have a critical seat at the table in the management of Great Lakes fisheries. This will not only allow for our voice to be heard in matters regarding our tribal fisheries set forth in treaties, but also those of other tribal nations throughout the Great Lakes. I’d like to say a huge Chi Miigwech to all of our staff at the Red Cliff Treaty Natural Resources division. Their hard work and perseverance also helped make this possible.”

The Joint Strategic Plan outlines a consensus-based approach whereby representatives from these management authorities:
1) participate in discussions about fish community, stocking, and harvest objectives
2) develop lake management plans, and
3) set priorities for research, management, and law enforcement for the Great Lakes.

Red Cliff now sits on the Council of Great Lakes Fishery Agencies, the Lake Superior Committee, the Council of Lake Committees, the Law Enforcement Committee, and the Fish Health Committee.

Learn more about the Council of Great Lakes Fishery Agencies online at