Jump to content
CoinPeople.com

ANA Letter in CoinWorld


Recommended Posts

I found the "editorial" letter in CoinWorld this past weekend rather disturbing. David Sklow wrote the letter and I have to say that I've known David for some time and have always trusted him and his judgement on things. David was the President of the Ocala Coin Club immediately preceeding my term in office there.

 

I'm not going to comment on the specific content of the letter. David has painted a picture of an organization that has been taken from the control of the membership and is now being run in a dictatorial manner without regard for the membership of the organization or its employees. This is a sad situation. I'm not sure what can be done to bring about a change in this situation, as the rules for running for office preclude almost anyone that the "organization" does not want to have elected. Perhaps since the ANA is chartered by the Federal Government, a Congressional Oversight is needed.

 

Please take the time to read the article and make your own decisions.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I contacted the ANA several weeks ago via their web site (just before they released thye ppt outlining the proposed changes). I did get a response from the president. His take was that they would be increasing the number of members who could serve on the board via this method. The nominating committe is not run or controlled by the board, at least in theory.

 

I think this process could work, it all depends on who is part of the nominating process and how the board and especially the ED interact with this body. I can easily see why people would be suspicious, and the current system has given us all our current board so they can't think it's all bad can they?

 

Are they supposed to have an open meeting on this at the summer convention?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Because of time constraints and lack of a full picture, I haven't bothered to read most of the ANA articles/complaints in CW. No, I'm not a member of the ANA. Maybe one day, but while I still have to focus time and money on schoolwork, I need to pass up a membership.

 

After reading the article Art pointed out, I have a few comments/questions:

 

Having only read that article, it sounds as if these secret committees and whatnot in the ANA heirarchy are their version of the HUAC (McCarthy as mentioned).

 

I haven't heard one good thing about the ANA in recent months. Assuming the organization isn't run by idiots, why the hell would they want to make all these cuts and changes? There has got to be a good reason that I am not seeing in these articles, editorials, and letters. Do any of you mind explaining what are the intents and purposes to these layoffs and whatnot refferred to so widely?

 

I have been a member of a severely corrupt and skewed organization (impressively so for a small, collegiate engineering project). What Sklow is describing is hilariously similar to how this unnamed organization acts. They did, afterall, boot the most accomplished and level-headed member off of the exec board (yours truly :ninja: ).

 

Anywho, I'd like to hear all sides of this issue.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, I finally see someone other than myself reading that article and being very much concerned.

I am not sure why there is not much comment on this guest commentary, unless it reflects just how

truly and completely the ANA does not represent the majority of the numismatic community as a whole

and therefore by nature is a moot point to the vast majority of numismatists.

Yet, as I read this article, I become concerned. And I believe it is in the best interests for all in the

community to be concerned. This is a federally charted organization, not-for-profit, in a very real sense

an organization that should be for all American's regardless of their interest. And the way it is being

managed, or even perceived as being managed, reflects on the attitude of our society as a whole.

My mother always told me that where there is smoke, there is fire. And there has been tons of smoke

coming from Colorado Springs for months now! Something really really rotten stinks in this organization,

and all indicators point to the top position and moves down from there several layers.

If you have not read this article, I encourage you to do so. Borrow a copy of the edition. Go to a library

that subscribes to Coin World and read it. Just read it. The article will sure make you think about what is

going on in the ANA.

 

Maybe this is status quo for this organization, as I have not been active in it for many years and just got back

into collecting about six years ago. Maybe our hobby has always had these kinds of problems with the national

organization that is suppose to represent the hobby. Maybe the ANA is so far disconnected from the average

collector these days that it no longer matters at all what they do in their little world. I would like to think

"Not" on all the above.

 

Maybe it is time for a huge and total shake up at the ANA? Maybe it is time for the grass roots to get

involved and bring this situation back into hand?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...
Maybe the ANA is so far disconnected from the average

collector these days that it no longer matters at all what they do in their little world.

As I watched this thread fall farther and farther down the list with no replies, I believe my statement above is correct. The "average" collector, the hobbyist, does not feel the ANA is relevant in their hobby and therefore has no interest. This is understandable. Just yesterday I asked my local coin dealer for reasons why someone should join the ANA. He could not give me any. I asked him about his life membership and he told me it was a business decision. ANA members get preference at the ANA shows, so if he wanted to set up a table, he needed the membership. Past that, he too had no comments or interest in what the ANA was doing. Do you think the ANA has a PR problem?

 

Well, enough of this negative talk.

 

Everyone have a safe and happy holiday in whatever manner it is that you choose to celebrate it in.

 

And here is to a great 2007 and may your collection continue to grow and gain in value!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Some rebuttals have been printed in the latest CoinWorld, singing the praises of the ANA management team and how great it is to work there. I seriously hope that that is true in all cases.

 

The situation where the average collector or dealer has little or no interest in the ANA and its workings is, IMHO, a symptom of the movement of the hobby from one with serious social involvement to one which is increasingly "solitary" in nature. The demise of local clubs is just one more example of this. Of course the fact that many people are seriously time-stressed also plays a major role.

 

Merry Christmas to everyone and I hope that at least at an individual level we can all continue to enjoy our hobby.

Link to post
Share on other sites

In the last day, both Art and Rabone have made mention of how the ANA is almost invisible in its duties for many "new" collectors. I've been in this hobby for almost half my life (I turn 21 soon) and have never seriously considered what it is the ANA does. One of the only things I can think of is that they set standards for dealers and other issues/terms. I do not see what benefit I would have from having a membership of any term. I see much more benefit from being a member of the Barber Coin Collector's Society or some like organization.

 

I've been at CP since July and have never thought to ask these question: What is it that the ANA does (both official and unofficial duties)? What are the benefits to a young(er) or newer collector of an ANA membership?

 

Hopefully this will create some light debate so I can see the full colors of this organization and these issues.

 

Thanks,

 

George

 

ANA Life Member non-existant

Link to post
Share on other sites
...

The situation where the average collector or dealer has little or no interest in the ANA and its workings is, IMHO, a symptom of the movement of the hobby from one with serious social involvement to one which is increasingly "solitary" in nature. The demise of local clubs is just one more example of this.

...

 

I certainly agree with rabone concerning the lack of relevance. I am not a member and am not inclined to join. One issue, for example, that the ANA does not, in my opinion, lead the pack on, is the matter of grading services. If I could see, from the ANA, definitive and professional studies concerning the grading companies, aimed at establishing validity and reliability, I would be more inclined to join. This is a high-impact issue affecting the hobby and I would expect the premier organization to be addressing it as a top priority.

 

Art, I do not agree, however, with the portion of your post quoted above. I think the hobby has changed such that the social involvement is no longer limited to local clubs, for example. Here too, the ANA does not appear to be a leader - instead, the notable Internet clubs include functions provided by two grading services. Thank goodness for clubs like CP - that's the future.

 

...just my 2 cents.

Link to post
Share on other sites
...

 

Art, I do not agree, however, with the portion of your post quoted above. I think the hobby has changed such that the social involvement is no longer limited to local clubs, for example. Here too, the ANA does not appear to be a leader - instead, the notable Internet clubs include functions provided by two grading services. Thank goodness for clubs like CP - that's the future.

 

...just my 2 cents.

 

I have to agree with your disagreement of my statement. I was merely talking about the overall people together types of socialization vs. folks being at their pc online. Online clubs have the potential to become the only forum of interchange for many collectors. There are vast geographic areas without clubs of any kind. Places like CP make it possible for numismatists of all levels to share and learn, as well as to socialize. I apologize if my post gave the wrong impression. To me there is a difference between being at my keyboard and hanging around with a bunch of folks over coffee with lots of neat coins to look at and discuss. But I firmly believe this - CP - is the way of the future.

Link to post
Share on other sites
In the last day, both Art and Rabone have made mention of how the ANA is almost invisible in its duties for many "new" collectors. I've been in this hobby for almost half my life (I turn 21 soon) and have never seriously considered what it is the ANA does. One of the only things I can think of is that they set standards for dealers and other issues/terms. I do not see what benefit I would have from having a membership of any term. I see much more benefit from being a member of the Barber Coin Collector's Society or some like organization.

 

I've been at CP since July and have never thought to ask these question: What is it that the ANA does (both official and unofficial duties)? What are the benefits to a young(er) or newer collector of an ANA membership?

 

Hopefully this will create some light debate so I can see the full colors of this organization and these issues.

 

Thanks,

 

George

 

ANA Life Member non-existant

This sounds like a good topic for the debates forum. Maybe even a thread where CP members could get together and define what they believe an organization like the ANA should be doing on behalf of the average collector.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I joined the ANA in 1968 at the encouragement of a CPA who had an office next to my dad's service station. I was 18, collecting pennies in a Whitman folder and trying to find a focus for my emerging hobby. Art (imagine the coincidence) had no kids, but a great interest in stamps and coins and took the local kids under his wing. If you collected stamps, he had 20 years of US issues in his office sorted into drawers. You could buy one of what you didn't have at face value. Those of us interested in coins got invited to the local coin club, coffee (or cokes for us teens) at the coffee shop on the way home, and an invitation to join ANA. The ANA helped focus my interests and while an exchange student in Germany, I wrote some articles for the Numismatist. I won some awards, attended the second annual summer seminar, met people like Ed Rochette, Adna Wilde, Maury Gould, and young dealers I still do business with today. I met my co-author for the Hitler book and numerous TAMS Journal articles and awards through my first publications in the Numismatist.

 

The ANA started the first grading service in an attempt to bring stability to the market. I don't personally agree with the direction slabbing has taken, but once the movement became commercial, it was time for the ANA to pass it on to the market. I believe they need to provide stability, a place for commentary, some oversight, and leadership, but they can't be a market player themselves.

 

The library is fantastic and available for your use. The museum is fantastic and a great resource for research (maybe not equal to the ANS in classical areas, but great nonetheless). The Numismatist continues to be an interesting monthly magazine. I'm disappointed that it doesn't meet the full research potential of the past version of the journal, but the new research journal does hold that promise once again.

 

I can't think of any other annual show that carries the weight of an ANA convention. When a dealer says they join to secure their place at the annual convention, that should give you a clue as to its importance.

 

Does the ANA have more to do? Of course. Every organization must grow, change, evolve, or be left behind. I believe its been slow to embrace the potential of the internet. I believe it does tend to be top heavy at times and lose touch with its grassroots. It is the responsibility of the membership to pull it back into line at election time.

 

I encourage everyone to consider ANA membership and would be happy to sponsor you. The old say, if you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem. I believe the ANA has a role as a long term stabilizing force in a hobby that is open to fraud, promotional silliness, etc. The ANA can be and has been an effective voice in representing the hobby, more so than smaller, more specilized organizations. I believe they have a place as well, because a national organization cannot go into any one area in great depth and hold the interests of the general membership. A national organization with smaller, specialized organizations in partnership can be a powerful force.

 

My two cents.

Link to post
Share on other sites
My two cents.

 

:ninja:;)

 

I think every new or non-ANA collector at CP should read that post. Thank you for putting in a few minutes and explaining all of that. For the first time, I feel compelled to become a member, not just feeling like an outsider.

 

Thank you kindly, Bill. I hope to hear from others, too.

Link to post
Share on other sites
The ANA can be and has been an effective voice in representing the hobby, more so than smaller, more specilized organizations. I believe they have a place as well, because a national organization cannot go into any one area in great depth and hold the interests of the general membership. A national organization with smaller, specialized organizations in partnership can be a powerful force.

 

My two cents.

 

In all my years involved with numismatics, I have never joined the ANA for one reason. As I watch the ANA, I see them to be much like our own Federal government. There is a lot of talk of how they have the intent and ability to make the hobby "safe", how they can educate individuals into the hobby, how they can help to combat against fraud and misrepresentation, and how they are organized for the good of the membership.

 

Yet, how often had the ANA's "partnership" on eBay been a solution to the rampant fraud and misrepresentation we find in the coin auctions, as opposed to our more "local" efforts to battle this issue? Where is it that hobbyists get most of their information and education in numismatics? From the ANA lending library or the internet and local club gatherings? An organization that has a true intent of serving its members will "evolve" at a proper rate, not almost ten years behind the technological norm. Is there anything the ANA can do against a dealer that the PNG cannot? Which will actually hurt the dealer more? Since there is already more than one professional organizations created to deal with dealers, shouldn't the focus of the ANA therefore be more geared toward the actual hobbyists? And being as such a Federally chartered not for profit organization with a vast membership of individual hobbyists, why is there so much politicking with so many other commercial service vendors, especially when attacking the bed buddies' competition in the name of misrepresentation?

 

They are a bloated beast, and in my opinion, one trying to gain power and influence with the same organiziations that can also gain power and influence in the government. Too many people have to ask the question "what good is membership for me with the ANA?" If the ANA were truly beneficial as they should be for the individual hobbyist, that question would not be so hard to ask.

 

One thing that I have not seen even touched upon in this discussion is the fact that there has been a push amongst the "professional" numismatists (not necessarily such a large campaign amongst individual hobbyists) to create government regulation in numismatics. Regulation as such that would leave only the elite dealers in business, drowning the smaller local shop. Regulation that some have alluded should leave the ANA as the obvious choice for the regulating body (much as the reserve regulates banking and is a privately owned non-government third party).

 

Taking that into consideration, review the current situation at the ANA again, and maybe the picture will become a bit more clear.

 

No two cents here, I'm throwing a whole dollar out on this one.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I see value in the resources and library the ANA offers. This would be my prime reason for ever joining.

 

When I first read Bill's post, I saw value in the national convention that brings many thousand collectors together. If I am not mistaken, many of the national or large regional coin shows are not ANA events. If the ANA did not exist, would these shows not exist too? I think they probably would exist.

 

On a slightly different topic, I often hear about ANS but mostly for their collection and other publications. Does anyone have some brief things to say about that society?

Link to post
Share on other sites
They are a bloated beast, and in my opinion, one trying to gain power and influence with the same organiziations that can also gain power and influence in the government. Too many people have to ask the question "what good is membership for me with the ANA?" If the ANA were truly beneficial as they should be for the individual hobbyist, that question would not be so hard to ask.

 

Obviously we disagree. I used the ANA's Young Numismatist correspondence course to help teach kids about coins, along with the adult members of the Santa Barbara Coin Club in the 1980s. In addition, we had at least one visit a year from an ANA rep including Adna Wilde and Herb Bergen speaking on their personal collecting specialties. The summer seminar began as a response to the plague of counterfeits and altered coins. True, the ANA may not be able to stop the criminals, but education can help each of us defend ourselves in the market place. I'm not sure what one expects ANA to do to police Ebay. They have no authority over a private busness, but I would suspect that ANA members are less likely to get ripped off if they follow the association's consumer alterts and advice.

 

I'm not saying the association is without its flaws. It is, after all, run by people with the same human strengths and weakness we all share. Some times it leads the hobby, sometimes it gets caught in its routine, afraid the embrace change. The same is true for all organizations. The current grading companies offer clubs that have attracted many. They promote their grading and slabbing, thereby their profits. Does that make them better or worse than the ANA? No, just a commercial versus non-profit enterprise. And don't forget, they exist because of a bright idea someone convinced the ANA to launch.

 

Organizations are only as good as the commitment of their membership and leaders. For those who choose not to participate, that is their freedom of choice and a reflection of their interests. For those who do choose to participate, they share a voice in what the ANA is and can be. Obviously I choose to be a member and I have derived a great deal of benefit from my membership, enough that I continued to pay my dues even in my inactive years as a hobbyist.

 

I found Coin People through Mike Marrota's column in the Numismatist. I believe the membership here surged following his article. I have enjoyed my stay and even found a few fellow collectors who share my interests. I even enjoy this debate. We can't improve the hobby if we are afraid to question and challenge its underlying assumptions from time to time and be willing to contribute to its growth and well being.

Link to post
Share on other sites
I found Coin People through Mike Marrota's column in the Numismatist. I believe the membership here surged following his article. I have enjoyed my stay and even found a few fellow collectors who share my interests. I even enjoy this debate. We can't improve the hobby if we are afraid to question and challenge its underlying assumptions from time to time and be willing to contribute to its growth and well being.

:ninja: Hear! Hear!

Link to post
Share on other sites
Organizations are only as good as the commitment of their membership and leaders. For those who choose not to participate, that is their freedom of choice and a reflection of their interests. For those who do choose to participate, they share a voice in what the ANA is and can be. Obviously I choose to be a member and I have derived a great deal of benefit from my membership, enough that I continued to pay my dues even in my inactive years as a hobbyist.

 

In my opinion, the quote above is really what it comes down to. There are a lot of people who like to complain about the ANA. Through the years reasons have been easy enough to come by. Yet, when I have gone to the open meetings the ANA has held there has been virtually no other collecters present. Obviously many people cannot make it to the convetions but do people talk to their regional reps, do they email, write, fax, or call? I think, often enough no. This cuts both ways, I have found some board members to be very unfriendly or uninterested and would never vote them. Others, especially someone like John Wilson, really do want to make a difference. Patti Finner has been at many of the regional shows, so one can at least ask her what she thinks. Too many people just like to complain. Of course, I've also been burshed off quite deliberatley by the current E.D. a few times and so my opinion of him is not particularly high.

The ANA has too many members to please everyone, yet no one is forced to join or stay. One can talk to any board members and see if they seem like people you would like to run the organization. One can also ignore all the politics and just focus on the tangible benefits. I think they've been mentioned in this thread, but on my list there are:

 

#1. The Conventions and Exhibbits. These set a standard for the entire collecting community, are free to attend, and offer the widest breadth of dealers of any show in the US.

 

#2. The Library. What better way to examine rare or expensive books than to ave them delivered to your home?

 

#3. Insurance

 

#4. The Numismatists

 

#5. The headquarters and summer seminars

 

If you don't like any of those things and you don't like the politics then you probably shouldn't be a member of the ANA :ninja:

Link to post
Share on other sites

Being an ANA member ( and a life member at that ) has afforded me access to some very prominent people in this field who live in my IM directory. If you're into coins, joining the 'common thread' is a 'given'. The ANA affords passage to reputable dealers and a rather ubiquitous trust by them. No other coin show that I've ever been to can rival theirs. The NUMISMATIST is one classy magazine, well constructed and fantastically printed. Who cares about their politics? I managed amateur baseball teams for twenty years and see no organizational differences -- a struggle for power, one-up-manship, etc. Most organizations suffer the same ills. I don't care if Fred Flintstone is their president -- I enjoy the prestige, preferential treatment and knowledge availability that ANA membership affords.

Link to post
Share on other sites

For various reasons I am running for ANA governor, one is the proposed change in the bylaws that changes the nominating process. If/when itgoes into effect I would probably be excluded so this may be my only chance. I fail to see how the board would be able to find more qualified members from a pool of those not interested enough to seek nomination than the present method. Further there is no reason why the board cannot nominate members under the present method.

 

See you at the open ANA board meeting at FUN.

 

Donald H. Dool

Link to post
Share on other sites

Don,

 

So you are talking specifically about this:

 

Streamline election process for Board of Governors assuring election choices of qualified candidates

Board Development/Nominating Committee that opens opportunities to the membership to be considered for a Board position by actively soliciting candidates for election

Benefits include:

Access to name on the ballot by those who might not have the resources to develop name recognition but have skills to contribute to the ANA

Solicitation of people to run for the board to bring particular skills the Association needs at any given time

Greater involvement by clubs and local organizations who can put forward names of their members for consideration

More inclusion in the nominating process by the entire membership

Creates opportunities for self nomination

Nominating committee:

Not made up of board members

Actively solicits candidates

Seeks candidates with diverse backgrounds

 

 

For those unaware the current process requires an office seeker to get nominations from five people and five member clubs which isn't that difficult for anyone actively engaged and desiring to be a governor. The response to my feedback on this issue was a reiteration of the position that the new process wouold make it easier for people to get on the ballot and that this would provide a better choice.

 

 

Anyway, I'd love to hear from anyone who is able to go to the FUN show and hear the feedback and discussion.

Link to post
Share on other sites

It seems to me that the proposed changes would make it easier to express an interest to run, not more difficult. Maybe I am missing something and I too would be interested in hearing a report on the meeting.

 

Don, perhaps you can expand more on your response to the proposed changes.

Link to post
Share on other sites
The response to my feedback on this issue was a reiteration of the position that the new process would make it easier for people to get on the ballot and that this would provide a better choice.

Yeah, right. If someone doesn't have enough gumption to get five people and five clubs (most of which will agree to nominate anyone who asks them to) to sponsor his nomination, how likely is he to make a good governor? "I will work hard for you on the Board of Governors. . . . as long as I don't have to do anything."

Link to post
Share on other sites
Yeah, right. If someone doesn't have enough gumption to get five people and five clubs (most of which will agree to nominate anyone who asks them to) to sponsor his nomination, how likely is he to make a good governor? "I will work hard for you on the Board of Governors. . . . as long as I don't have to do anything."

 

 

Maybe the Ocala Club is different than the other ANA Member clubs but at the last go round we had more than enough candidates asking for our support and nomination. We tried to be as dilligent as possible in reviewing the different folks and deciding who the club should nominate. Fortunately we have folks like John and Nancy Wilson and David Sklow as members and therefore get a lot of feedback throughout the year on what is happening at the ANA and FUN, as well. I think there's a lot more to getting nominated than just throwing your hat in the ring.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
×
×
  • Create New...