So last week I was at the Hardwood Federation Fly-In. It was very successful, with approximately 100 meetings with representatives of Congress. The key talking point was asking for reform of the federal forest management system—did you know that right now we spend approximately half the Forest Service’s funds on firefighting? We’re neglecting the forest management that would not just lead to healthier, more productive, more diverse forests, but also forests less prone to fires! Senator Wyden, (pictured at left below with me, Jeff Wirkkala of Hardwood Industries and Pat Lynch of Roseberg Forest Products) said, “These days, it’s a Fire Service more than a Forest Service.”

Think this is too difficult for you? Don’t worry, you get plenty of training. This is the Hardwood Federation team below: Cary Moon, Pat Rita and Dana Cole. They take care of everything—set up the meetings, give you maps, give you talking points and teach you how to walk the Hill.

Here’s a pic of Dana going over talking points and methods of approach with the group:

You’ll network with other industries too. Here’s a quick selfie with Mark Bartford, executive director of the National Hardwood Lumber Association:

And if nothing else, come hang out with lots of the NWFA family:

Michael and John will capture your beauty for generations!

And just look at this view taken from inside the Capitol Building looking down the Mall….


Elizabeth Baldwin has over 20 years of international wood sourcing experience. Very widely traveled, her résumé's "Special Skills" section includes "the ability to eat anything from raw horse to deep-fried scorpion." She serves as Metropolitan Hardwood Flooring's ( ECO (Environmental Compliance Officer) and deals daily with the "green alphabet soup" of today's industry: FSC, CARB, LEED, and much more. She blogs for Hardwood Floors on all things green (and, as she says, " 'grey' and 'blue' and almost every color except 'black and white.' Nothing in this world is black and white, particularly not 'green issues.'")