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Ambassador Award gets makeover

Today at 8 a.m. is the Numismatic News Numismatic Ambassador breakfast in Baltimore. A group of approximately 100 Numismatic Ambassadors and spouses or guests, have a chance to break bread together and catch up with each other.

Part of the catching up will be information that I will provide about changes that are afoot.

Since the first award was given to Charlie Colver in 1974 in California, the award has been given to recipients at various conventions and club meetings by members of the Numismatic News staff.

I myself happened to give two awards in March at the Mansfield Numismatic Society annual show in Willimantic, Conn. One of the recipients, C. John Ferreri, is the founder of the show and it was thought appropriate that he should be recognized among his peers there. Tom Rockwell, an active hobbyist with Boston area clubs, was also attending. He got the other award I had that day.

This morning this method changes. Because of the escalating costs of travel, winners from this point forward will be announced annually at the Ambassador breakfast.

Five new names were added to the roster this morning, bringing the 2008 total to eight.

Honored this morning were M. Remy Bourne, former American Numismatic Association governor; Jeff C. Garrett, immediate past president of the Professional Numismatists Guild; Lawrence Gaye, a tireless worker for the ANA, whose duties included chairing the 2004 Portland, Ore., convention; James W. Hunt, a hobby stalwart in California, and Bob Hurst, the current president of Florida United Numismatists.

Holders of Ambassador Awards vote on each annual slate of award recipients. A ballot is prepared and the top vote getters receive the award.

In case you are counting, the eighth recipient this year was Myrna Lighterman, whom I had the pleasure of surprising with the award back in January at the FUN convention, where she has left her mark as a tireless volunteer.

Congratulations to all.