The Internet has changed many things in the past 10 years, but one thing it has not changed is the importance of the hobby’s volunteers.
Without volunteers, shows wouldn’t be held, educational research wouldn’t be done, talks wouldn’t be given, Young Numismatist programs wouldn’t be conducted and clubs themselves wouldn’t exist. We would have a pretty sterile hobby.
Volunteers are so important that they receive tribute in an indirect manner. Even commercial shows have volunteers giving talks and staging YN programs. Owners and managers realize the drawing power of the positive hobby environment created by the nation’s volunteers.
How do the rest of us say “thank you” to those volunteers for what they have done? One way was created by Cliff Mishler of this newspaper in 1974. The Numismatic Ambassador Award was launched to honor the hobby’s hard workers.
Each year at this time we ask current holders of the award and all Numismatic News readers to nominate individuals to receive the award in the following year. We publish on Page 7 a form that might help you compose your thoughts about potential worthy recipients for 2006.
Who is a worthy recipient? In the May 7, 1974, issue of this paper, it was written, “Fundamentally, the award is intended to reward deserving collectors for their faithful devotion to the hobby. All of this year’s award-winners share this common quality, and much more. They are club members who never fail to ask, ‘What can I do?’ when something needs to be done. More often they find something that needs to be done – and they do it without being asked or told.”
Chances are, you know somebody like this. You might work with him or her as a club volunteer, a tireless giver of talks, or just an all-around hard worker. Nominate this person for a Numismatic Ambassador Award and return this written nomination to us by Dec. 1. We need the biographical sketch to aid in bringing the worthy qualities of the nominee to the attention of current award holders. It is these award holders who comprise the selection panel. Once we receive your nomination and all those from all other sources, we create an Ambassador Award ballot. The biographies of 30-40 of these nominees are sent out to all living Ambassadors and they make their choices by voting on who they believe should be given the award in 2006. We here in the office tabulate their votes and the top recipients get to join this illustrious group.
Official presentation of the award plaque occurs at various hobby venues around the country. That is why we ask you for suggestions as to what would be the most appropriate place to give the Ambassador Award to your candidate. The magnitude of the honor is amplified when it can be given before the recipient’s peers and friends in the hobby and not simply a collection of strangers.
The form at right asks some important questions, but don’t be limited by those questions. Anything that you deem important to your candidate’s hobby resume should be included in your written submission to us.
Is your candidate a speaker, an exhibitor, a club officer, or perhaps all three? Please help by providing us with the information. Perhaps your candidate is known for a particular trait like always being at the club meeting early, turning on lights, setting up chairs and generally getting things going before the rest of the group arrives.
Naturally, you may e-mail your nomination information to the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org. Simply try to answer the questions that the form asks and add additional information as you believe is warranted.
Some nomination biographies that we get are way too detailed. Some are too sketchy to make a judgment from. However, most tend to get it about right. Use your judgment. It is amazing how the details of the lives of the most appropriate candidates just seem to write themselves.
Say thanks to a worthy hobby volunteer. Nominate him or her for a Numismatic Ambassador Award.