Each summer, NLBMDA welcomes a college-aged relative of a member for a learning experience in the heart of our nation's government. The Blair Collings Internship in Government Affairs provides a stipend to help offset the student's living expenses during his or her summer in Washington, D.C. In summer 2004, Brooks Hanner, the nephew of Joe Collings of Ferguson Lumber Corp. in Rockville, Ind., joined NLBMDA through the program and wrote the following about his experiences:

“My summer at NLBMDA was the experience of a lifetime, full of unforgettable memories. Not only did I get to meet a number of U.S. senators, I also had the opportunity to attend President Reagan's casket viewing in the Capitol and a speech by President George W. Bush in the East Room of the White House—during which I sat by Ted Turner! I am grateful to NLBMDA for the chance to work in Washington. I learned firsthand that NLBMDA is an invaluable source for members in bringing relevant issues to the attention of Congress through lobbying efforts and dealer grassroots involvement. One of the most important things that I will take away from this experience is the need to be involved, to always make your voice heard. I was also fortunate to work for Senator Evan Bayh (D-Ind.) over the summer, and in seeing both sides of the process I can say from experience that the people who are heard are the people who take the time and effort to voice their opinions.”

This month, NLBMDA welcomes the 2005 Blair Collings intern, Patricia Fishleigh, daughter of Ohio Lumbermen's Association president Harry Fishleigh, of North Coast Wood Products in Mentor, Ohio.