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Matt Grossmann, Max Olivero, and award winnersThey are some of the hardest working people—not elected—on the floor of the Michigan Legislature. They are also some of Michigan’s future leaders, legislators and policy advocates.

They are the interns in the Michigan House of Representatives and the Michigan Senate. Michigan State University has long sponsored a legislative internship program, nurturing students whose future plans including work in public policy, public service or public office.

Daniel Rosenthal was one of MSU's first Legislative Student Intern Program participants in 1977. His family recalls his warm relationship with former Sen. Jack Welborn and his excitement about an assignment helping to create an environmental program. Rosenthal’s life was cut unexpectedly short in June 1977, and to remember him, his family established the Daniel Rosenthal Legislative Intern Award.

They never forgot his experiences and the value he placed on them.

Rosenthal award winnersThe annual Daniel Rosenthal award is administered by the Institute for Public Policy and Social Research in partnership with MSU’s James Madison College. With resources added by former U.S. Rep. Vernon Ehlers, a runners-up award was established. Both awards carry a cash stipend. A committee composed of representatives from the state House, state Senate and MSU makes award selections. House or Senate members nominate interns for the awards. Interns must also complete an application. Applications are typically due in early April. Both application and nomination must be completed for interns to be considered for the awards.

For more information, please contact: Maxwell Olivero, James Madison College, (517) 353-6757, or Katherine Cusick, IPPSR, (517) 353-1357,

Download nomination form (.pdf)

Download application form (.pdf)

Past Award Recipient ---- Nominator

  • Travis Colwell ---- Sen. Mike Green
  • Thom Jordan ---- Rep. Thomas Scott
  • Bruce Foster ---- Rep. Bela Kennedy
  • Johanna Durand ---- Rep. Mary Brown
  • Paul Welday ---- Rep. Wilbur Brotherton
  • Susan Zimmerman ---- Sen. William Sederburg
  • Ann Parker ---- Sen. William Faust
  • Kathy Lewis ---- Rep. Curtis Hertel
  • Robinn Churchill ---- Rep. Pat Gagliardi
  • Shandra Shapiro ---- Rep. David Gubow
  • Adrienne Bass ---- Sen. Rudy Nicols
  • Michael Bailey ---- Rep. Michael Bennane
  • Christopher Weiss ---- Rep. Perry Bullard
  • Bryan Roosa ---- Sen. John Engler
  • B. Scott Durham ---- Rep. Bill Martin
  • Jay M. Smith ---- Rep. David B. Robertson
  • Lee Zacka ---- Sen. Dick Posthumus
  • Marcela Kress ---- Rep. John Freeman
  • Cyntia Essenmacher ---- Sen. Bill Bullard
  • Elizabeth Thompson ---- Sen. Mat Dunaskiss
  • Megan Biganeiss ---- Sen. David Jaye
  • Stephanie Ellis ---- Rep. Artina Tinsley Hardman
  • Irene Kepler ---- Rep. Michael Switalski
  • Andrew Kramer ---- Rep. Alexander Lipsey
  • Emily Dievendorf ---- Rep. Alexander Lipsey
  • Adam ElBenni ---- Rep. Larry Julian
  • Amanda Fopma ---- Sen. Michael Switalski
  • Michael Arbanas ---- Rep. Lee Gonzales
  • Nathaniel Knapper ---- Rep. Fulton Sheen & Sen. Ken Sikkema
  • Samantha Mills ---- Rep. Robert B. Jones
  • Gopi Patel ---- Rep. Kevin Green
  • Ashley Morris ---- Rep. Michael Switalski
  • Luke Wagner ---- Sen. Alan Cropsey