friends@therouge.org | 734-927-4900 | Fax: 734-927-4920

Matthew Bertrand, MLA

Matthew Bertrand portrait

Matthew Bertrand serves as Restoration Coordinator and Landscape Designer at Friends of the Rouge, which works to restore, protect, and enhance the Rouge River located in southeast Michigan. Previously, Matthew worked for Michigan State University Extension (Leelanau County, MI), the Grand Traverse Conservation District (Traverse City, MI), and Watershed Management Group (Tucson, AZ).

Matthew is a leading green infrastructure educator and practitioner. Through the Master Rain Gardener program, Matthew has mentored over 75 residents to design their own rain gardens and has inspired thousands of community members through Rain Gardens 101 events. Matthew has designed and built 80+ rain gardens, including rain gardens at the Plymouth Municipal Yard, Plymouth Township Park, and planting designs for over 20,000 square feet of rain gardens at the Plymouth Arts and Recreation Complex (PARC), one of the largest rain garden demonstration sites in Michigan and beyond. Matthew currently leads a partnership among southeast Michigan watershed groups to create a regional rain garden marketing and installation collaborative social enterprise.

In his prior work, Matthew envisioned and developed the pioneering Go Beyond Beauty program in Traverse City, which partnered with local nurseries to halt local sales of invasive ornamental plants. He also developed and coordinated Watershed Management Group’s Green Living Coop through its inaugural two years, supporting 50 residents to assist each other in building rain gardens. Matthew holds a Master’s Degree in Landscape Architecture from the University of Michigan and B.A. in English Literature from Arizona State University,