Better Business Bureau Report for
Alliance For The Great Lakes

Better Business Bureau Report issued November 2012
Better Business Bureau Report expires November 2014

Does not meet one or more standards
This charity does not meet one or more of the 20 standards for Charity Accountability. Find out more...

Find out more about this charity:

Back To Top

Charity Contact Information

Name: Alliance For The Great Lakes
Address: 17 N. State St., Suite 1390
  Chicago, IL 60602
Phone: 312-939-0838
Web Address:
Back To Top

Better Business Bureau Comments

Formerly known as:Lake Michigan Federation

Year, State Incorporated: 1971, Illinois
Affiliates: None
Stated Purpose: Our mission at the Alliance for the Great Lakes is to conserve and restore the world's largest freshwater resource using policy, education and local efforts, ensuring a healthy Great Lakes and clean water for generations of people and wildlife.

Back To Top

Evaluation Conclusions


Alliance For The Great Lakes does not meet the following Standard for Charity Accountability.

Standard 16: Annual Report - Have an annual report available to all, on request, that includes: (a) the organization's mission statement, (b) a summary of the past year's program service accomplishments, (c) a roster of the officers and members of the board of directors, (d) financial information that includes (i) total income in the past fiscal year, (ii) expenses in the same program, fund raising and administrative categories as in the financial statements, and (iii) ending net assets.

Alliance For The Great Lakes does not meet this standard because the most recent annual report did not include:

  • The organization’s mission statement
In addition, the BBB of Chicago & Northern Illinois requested but did not receive complete information on the organization’s governance and oversight, effectiveness measures, finances, solicitation materials, donor privacy, and fundraising disclosures and is unable to verify the organization's compliance with the following 17Standards for Charity Accountability: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 18, and 19.
Alliance For The Great Lakes meets the remaining 2 Standards for Charity Accountability.
Back To Top



The Alliance for the Great Lakes is the oldest independent citizens' organization devoted 100 percent to the Great Lakes.

For the fiscal year ended August 31, 2011, Alliance For The Great Lakes's program expenses were:

Salaries 637,859
Consultants 474,572
Employee benefits 84,012
Occupancy costs 73,913
Supplies 46,451
Payroll Taxes 46,379
Conferences and events 41,847
Travel, lodging and meals 39,781
Printing and reproduction 35,533
Professional Services 30,400
Postage and shipping 26,052
Depreciation 25,327
Telephone and Internet 15,408
Commucations 10,415
Equipment and software rental 7,122
Other 4,061
Total Program Expenses: $1,599,132
Back To Top



Chief Executive :

Chair of the Board: Jack Bails
Chair's Profession / Business Affiliation:

Board Size:

Paid Staff Size: 17

*Compensation includes annual salary and, if applicable, benefit plans, expense accounts, and other allowances.
Back To Top

Fund Raising


Method(s) Used:

Fund raising costs were 14% of related contributions. (Related contributions, which totaled $1,311,623, are donations received as a result of fund raising activities.)
Back To Top

Tax Status


This organization is tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. It is eligible to receive contributions deductible as charitable donations for federal income tax purposes.
Back To Top



The following information is based on Alliance For The Great Lakes's audited financial statements for the fiscal year ended August 31, 2011.

Source of Funds  
Net assets released from restrictions 916,180
Contributions 621,279
Grants and contracts 512,108
Fundraising Events 115,958
Contributed Services 62,278
Investment Return 50,525
Other 22,340
Total Income $2,300,668


Uses of Funds as a % of Total Expenses

Programs: 78%  Fund Raising: 9%  Administrative: 13% 

Total income $2,300,668
Program expenses $1,599,132
Fund raising expenses 182,710
Administrative expenses 263,952
Total expenses $2,045,794
Income in Excess of Expenses 254,874
Beginning net assets 743,897
Other Changes in Net Assets 361,002
Ending net assets 1,359,773
Total liabilities 129,798
Total assets $1,489,571

Back To Top

An organization may change its practices at any time without notice. A copy of this report has been shared with the organization prior to publication. It is not intended to recommend or deprecate, and is furnished solely to assist you in exercising your own judgment. If the report is about a charity and states the charity meets or does not meet the BBB Standards for Charity Accountability, it reflects the results of an evaluation of information and materials provided voluntarily by the charity. The name Better Business Bureau is a registered service mark of the Council of Better Business Bureaus, Inc.

This report is not to be used for fund raising or promotional purposes.

Send to:

What is an Accredited Charity