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FUN carries on Ambassador tradition

 (Image courtesy

(Image courtesy

How long does it take to make something fully your own? Does it ever happen? Whether it does or not, it should.

I would like to write my congratulations to the Florida United Numismatists in general and Tony Swicer in particular for what has been done with the Numismatic Ambassador Award.

Individuals with long memories will know that this award was created by Clifford Mishler at Numismatic News in 1974. It was intended to honor the many volunteers who make organized numismatics tick. Mishler felt that many of these individuals did not get the recognition their efforts deserve.

Thus began a program of honors that ran under Numismatic News auspices for 40 years.

In 2014, the last Numismatic News Numismatic Ambassador Breakfast was held in Rosemont, Ill., a Chicago suburb, during the American Numismatic Association World’s Fair of Money.

I was joined by Mishler at that event to ring the curtain down on this ongoing four-decade effort. F+W had decided that this program was no longer worth the cost.

The last breakfast was poignant for me, and for Mishler, who helped me emcee the event, and for the approximately 80 Ambassadors who attended.

But it was also the beginning of a new chapter. The hobby stalwarts at the FUN organization believed this award was something that should not be allowed to die.

They stepped forward and volunteered to continue giving out Numismatic Ambassador Awards.

Now FUN is a first-class organization. It has first-class volunteers. That is probably why there are so many Ambassadors in their ranks.

Because of this, it was a pleasure to pass the baton to FUN. The Ambassador program lives on, true to its roots. Tony Swicer is running the award program in a manner that is similar to the way it had been run. He didn’t have to do this, but in his own way, in FUN’s way, they have put their distinctive stamp on the award.

On Jan., 11, 2019, the fourth FUN Numismatic Ambassador breakfast will be held during the FUN convention in Orlando.

I look forward to being there. This is the fourth time FUN has held the breakfast. I have been invited to emcee the event and present awards to the next annual class of award recipients.

Those who will receive the award in 2019 exemplify the kind of individual Mishler envisioned. They are truly examples to us all.

Fortunately for all of us, there are many people in numismatics who fit this description. That is why I expect FUN will be able to carry on this award tradition for many, many years to come.

Ambassadors, I salute you all.

This article was originally printed in Numismatic News. >> Subscribe today.

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