Michigan Sea Grant welcomes new Extension educator to Saginaw Bay region

Kip Cronk brings wide range of experience and is excited to start 'dream job.'

Kip Cronk will focus on working with coastal communities to address Great Lakes, Lake Huron and Saginaw Bay issues. Photo: Michigan Sea Grant
Kip Cronk will focus on working with coastal communities to address Great Lakes, Lake Huron and Saginaw Bay issues. Photo: Michigan Sea Grant

Kip Cronk, a long-time Bay City resident, has been hired as a Michigan Sea Grant Extension educator in the Saginaw Bay region. He began his new position on Jan. 30, 2017, and works out of the Bay County Michigan State University Extension office.

Cronk fills the position held previously by Katy Hintzen, who left recently to join Hawaii Sea Grant. Cronk will continue to focus on working with coastal communities, students, teachers and the public, as well as businesses in the Saginaw Bay region to apply science-based knowledge to address Great Lakes, Lake Huron and Saginaw Bay issues.

 “We are excited to have Kip joining Michigan Sea Grant and MSU Extension,” said Dr. Heather Triezenberg, program leader. “Kip has a track record of working collaboratively with many partners and will bring that skill to the Saginaw Bay region. His experience as an environmental quality analyst will also allow him to offer his technical expertise to develop education programs to benefit the community and environment.”

Michigan Sea Grant helps to foster economic growth and protect Michigan’s coastal, Great Lakes resources through education, research and outreach. A collaborative effort of the University of Michigan and Michigan State University and its MSU Extension, Michigan Sea Grant is part of the NOAA-National Sea Grant network of 33 university-based programs.

“Kip will be an excellent addition to our team,” said Dr. Bill Taylor, Associate Director of Michigan Sea Grant. “His training in environmental studies, Earth science and secondary education, and his practical work experience with the state and nonprofit organizations in the Bay City area will help him deliver impactful Sea Grant Extension programming.”

Cronk, originally from Ann Arbor, spent a year in Alaska as an aquatic ecologist and education coordinator for the Yukon River Inter-Tribal Watershed Council before returning to Michigan. He joined the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality in Bay City as a field biologist, and also served as an environmental quality analyst.

Most recently Cronk has been the coordinator for the Saginaw Bay Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area, a group that promotes invasive species education and outreach, invasive species inventory and prevention, and invasive species management activities.

“I am super happy and excited to be joining this team,” Cronk said. “Michigan Sea Grant has a wonderful reputation as a partner who helps get things done. I’m looking forward to developing new programs and opportunities in the Saginaw Bay region. Having the Michigan State University and the University of Michigan and as resources in my tool chest is a dream opportunity for me as an educator.”

Cronk received his bachelor degree from Eastern Michigan University in Earth Science and Secondary Education. He was lead Earth science teacher at Langley High School in McLean, Va. Cronk received his master’s degree in Environmental Studies and Resource Management and Administration from Antioch New England Graduate School.

“Kip brings a wide range of experience that will benefit the communities in the Saginaw Bay area,” said Dr. Dave Ivan, director of the MSU Extension Greening Michigan Institute. “We look forward the new ideas and opportunities he will bring.”

In addition to his love of fishing, boating, swimming and just generally being outdoors, Kip also enjoys gardening. He took a Master Gardener class through MSU Extension and loves using native plants in his garden. “Also, taking that class got me to try different varieties of vegetables as I was growing them,” he said.

“Conserving water for future generations is one of my personal goals,” Cronk said. “In ninth grade I had a science teacher who inspired me to want to be a teacher. I love to do the educational part. And that’s why this job is a dream job, dealing with education and outreach.”

Contact information for Kip Cronk:
Michigan State University Extension
Michigan Sea Grant
Bay County Building
515 Center Ave., Suite G102
Bay City, 48708
(989) 895-4026 ext. 6
Email: cronkkip@msu.edu

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