This article was originally printed in the latest issue of Numismatic News.
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U.S. Mint Director Ed Moy pledged in 2007 to bring about a neo-Renaissance in coinage design. History will decide if that is his legacy.
Moy resigned as director to join L&L Energy, Inc., a company headquartered in Seattle that has coal mining and distribution businesses in China. His new position is vice president – corporate infrastructure.
His resignation from the Mint is effective Jan. 9.
A manifestation of his commitment to improvement was his revival of the Ultra High Relief Saint-Gaudens $20 gold coin design that never made it into production in 1907.
The UHG coin has a smaller diameter and is much thicker than the standard $20 gold piece. The artistic tribute to ancient Greek coinage made it into collector hands in 2009.
The Citizens Coin Advisory Committee recently authorized a subcommittee to review coin design excellence.
“Director Moy had the power to prevent the committee from conducting the review, but he did not,” said CCAC member Donald Scarinci. “If he had stayed on as director for a couple of months, I believe he would have implemented a lot of recommendations in the report.”
Should something good come out of the committee’s recommendations, Scarinci said, “It think history will give him a shared credit for starting the process that he talked about in 2007.”
Moy was sworn in as Mint director in September 2006.
American Numismatic Association President Clifford Mishler said the past five years with Moy at the helm have been challenging times for the Mint and for the hobby.
“Moy has been reasonably receptive and accomodating to interacting with our hobby community, managing under the restraints of a government bureaucracy,” Mishler said.
But those on the bullion side of the hobby didn’t have much interaction with Moy, said Terry Hanlon, CEO of Dillon Gage, one of 11 “authorized purchasers” that handle Mint bullion products.
“I don’t know who in the coin industry interacted with Director Moy, but none of the APs to my knowledge have ever really interacted with him,” Hanlon said. “We were unaware of what his involvement was with the process and the decisions affecting specifically the bullion side of the business.”
When it came to input from the AP’s regarding Mint bullion policies, there just wasn’t any, Hanlon said.
In announcing his resignation, Moy told Mint employees, “I’m proud of the progress we’ve made over four and a half years. The Mint is a better place and delivering more value to American taxpayers. The foundation has been rebuilt and the work is now in your capable hands.”