ANA announces Bill Fivaz 2001 Numismatist of the Year

August 10, 2001 By ekr

ANA announces Bill Fivaz 2001 Numismatist of the Year

The American Numismatic Association (ANA) confers its 2001 “Numismatist of the Year” award in recognition of overall devotion and dedication to the ANA and the numismatic hobby.

This year’s recipient is collector, educator, author and hobby promoter Bill Fivaz of Dunwoody, Georgia. A man who has shared his expertise and generosity with hobbyists and speculators alike, Fivaz many contributions, hard work and years to the numismatic hobby are unsurpassed in their generosity.

A collector for more than 50 years and enthusiastic numismatist for more than 40, Fivaz likes to give “110 percent” to the hobby that, for him, began with a few Liberty Head nickels and Indian Head cents from his father and uncle. He now specializes in Buffalo nickels, Mercury dimes, Morgan and Peace dollars, Mint errors and varieties, Hobo nickels and love tokens. 

As co-author (along with close friend J.T. Stanton) of The Cherrypickers’ Guide to Rare Die Varieties, he has charmed many into collecting simply for the fun of it. Fivaz’ passion for sharing his numismatic knowledge has led others to regard him as one of the most popular and respected educators in the field. For more than 20 years, his wit and easy-going nature have made his course on United States coin grading a sold-out event at the annual ANA Summer Seminar.

“You’ve heard of the term ‘Super Mom,’ someone who works full-time, takes care of the house, aging parents, two and a half kids and volunteers at the local food bank three days a week? Well, Bill is a ‘Super-Duper Numismatist,'” lauds ANA Education Director Gail Baker. “He does it all – he sets up dynamite exhibits, is the student’s favorite teacher at Summer Seminar, volunteers his time and expertise to a number of local, regional and national numismatic clubs, and mentors new collectors. He writes articles and publishes books. This year, he is General Chairman of the ANA World’s Fair of Money® in Atlanta. Bill does it all efficiently, graciously, and always with a great sense of humor and warm smile,” Baker adds.Numismatics is “a finer hobby thanks to Bill’s contributions,” notes Brenda Bishop, ANA convention services Manager. “Bill is extraordinarily knowledgeable and is quick to share his knowledge and collecting interests with everyone. We are very proud to have him as general chairman of the Atlanta convention.”

Fivaz, a former ANA governor (1985-89), is the recipient of many prestigious awards. For his contributions and achievements, he was awarded the ANA’s highest honor, the Farran Zerbe Memorial Award, in 1995. He won his first ANA Medal of Merit in 1984 and second in 1989; he has twice been honored with the ANA’s M. Vernon Sheldon Memorial Audio/Visual Award; and in 1981 was named ANA Outstanding Adult Advisor.

Fivaz won the ANA People’s Choice Exhibit Award at the Association’s 96th Anniversary Convention in Atlanta in 1987, and was a recipient of the ANA’s Glenn Smedley Memorial Award in 1991. The following year, ANA President Edward C. Rochette recognized him with a Presidential Award, and at the Association’s 1995 Early Spring Convention in Atlanta, he once again garnered the People’s Choice Award.

Though his list of accolades is long, Fivaz remains modest and appreciative. “I thank the ANA Board of Governors for naming me Numismatist of the Year. To be in the company of such numismatic icons as Dave Bowers, Eric Newman, Harvey Stack, Bob Hendershott, Chet Krause and Harry Forman is very humbling and challenging, I can assure you,” says Fivaz. Fellowship, he adds, is among the most rewarding aspects of the hobby. “An adjunct of collecting I particularly enjoy is the folks I would never have had the pleasure of meeting and associating with had it not been for coins. I think the friend-ships developed in this hobby are particularly close and long-lasting because we see each other at conventions, seminars and meetings through-out the year, a big plus that is lacking in many other associations.”

Fivaz never fails to share the spotlight with his wife, Marilyn. “I also thank my wonderful wife of 45 years, who has endured my time away from home in pursuit of my hobby, and who has continued to be both understanding and supportive of my ‘numismania.'” In bestowing this award, the American Numismatic Association expresses the sincere appreciation of its members to Bill Fivaz, Numismatist of the Year.

Originally Release Date: August 10, 2001
ANA Contacts: Phone: 719-482-9872
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