Betty Higby, who served as superintendent of the Denver Mint 1969-1978, and went on to work part time for the American Numismatic Association as director of grants and endowments, died Aug. 13 at age 94, a resident of Colorado Springs, Colo.
Appointed by President Richard Nixon, she served for three days shy of nine years, March 21, 1969, to March 18, 1978. Her work ethic was legendary.
Celebrating her own first year, her boss Mary T. Brooks called a press conference to announce that the “Denver Mint has topped all previous production records.”
Credit was given to Higby. “She has demonstrated highly capable leadership that has inspired this outstanding achievement. We are proud of all Mint employees who have made 1969 a truly memorable year for the Denver Mint,” said Brooks.
In 1974, Higby received an invitation from CBS television to come to their New York studios to appear on one of television’s most popular shows, “What’s My Line,” during its final season.
Higby took an interest in coin collecting, and coin collectors. In 1977, she arranged for an extraordinary collection of Oriental coins to be placed on public display in Denver.
In retirement, she worked initially as a volunteer for the ANA, then as paid grants director. When the anticipated influx of grants did not materialize, she went back to her volunteer status and did things like help arrange for a visit to her old stomping grounds at the Denver Mint for an ANA convention in the Mile High City.
Her husband Don W. Higby died in 1965, but she is survived by a son, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.