Two weeks ago Martin LeBlanc - C&NN Vice President, NLN mentor and incredible, inspirational advocate for connecting youth with the outdoors - visited Alaska for a whirlwind 3-day speaking tour in Fairbanks, Anchorage and Homer. In all three communities he eloquently presented on the issue of nature-deficit disorder to students (some younger than he'd imagined) and members of the general public. In Homer, where I live, Martin expertly shared this issue and its health-related costs - plus the numerous health benefits of outdoor play - with some of our hospital's staff and physicians; he proved to be a fantastic catalyst for our high school students to assess their relationship with the outdoors; and he motivated more than 20 community members to join our Connecting Children with Nature in Homer coalition. Some of our new coalition members have already offered funds for future projects; others have offered animals for outdoor experiences with local kids (sled dogs and an old horse to haul kids on sleds); and others just want to be involved with and help our active and motivated group of citizens. Following up on Martin's 3-city visit, we envision a regional (Alaska) summit for Natural Leaders in 2010, with one or more youth from Alaska then joining the C&NN Natural Leaders Network. I can't speak highly enough about Martin's tremendous presentations and the personal (and outdoor) connections he forged in each community. We look forward to seeing him in our corner of the planet again soon! Thank you, Martin!!!