By Michael Baadke
The American Philatelic Society’s board of directors conducted a telephone meeting on Dec. 6, with an agenda that included site selection for two upcoming APS national stamp shows and exhibitions.
The board also discussed a proposal to sponsor an international show in the United States in 2021, five years after this year’s World Stamp Show-NY 2016, and five years before the next scheduled U.S. international show, Boston 2026.
Other agenda items included the executive director’s report, a proposal for the formation of a dealer advisory council, and the creation of a new dealer of the year award.
The APS national shows under consideration at the Tuesday meeting were the 2019 Ameristamp Expo winter show, and APS Stampshow 2020, the summer show.
Both of these major annual shows are held each year in different cities. The next Ameristamp Expo is taking place March 3-5, 2017, in Reno, Nev., followed by Birmingham, Ala., the following year, Feb. 23-25, 2018.
The next three APS Stampshows will be held in Richmond, Va. (Aug. 3-6, 2017); Columbus, Ohio (2018); and Omaha, Neb. (2019).
Megan Orient, the APS director of shows and exhibitions, provided the board with a breakdown of three site prospects for each of the two national shows under consideration. For Ameristamp Expo 2019 those sites were Houston, Texas; Phoenix, Ariz.; and Winston-Salem, N.C.
Considering cost and other factors, the APS staff involved in the selection process recommended Phoenix as the top choice for the Ameristamp Expo 2019; specifically, the Mesa Convention Center, in nearby Mesa, Ariz., where the Aripex stamp show has met regularly for many years. Orient noted that the show would be held as a joint venture with Aripex in association with the Arizona group’s own annual show.
The board voted unanimously to accept the recommendation of Phoenix/Mesa as the site of Ameristamp Expo 2019, which will take place Feb. 15-17, 2019.
The leading candidate sites for APS Stampshow 2020 were Hartford, Conn.; Fredericksburg, Va.; and Fort Worth, Texas.
“These are all pretty strong proposals,” Orient told the board. “The base cost is pretty comparable across the board.”
Eric Jackson, a nonvoting dealer representative to the board, observed that dealers have spoken highly of Hartford as a show location in the past. Hartford has hosted the APS summer show previously in 2008 and again in 2014.
Following Orient’s presentation and board discussion, Hartford was unanimously chosen as the site for APS Stampshow 2020.
The next order of business was a presentation by APS Executive Director Scott English describing preliminary plans to hold “a midterm international show that would bridge the gap between New York 2016 and Boston 2026.” Initial discussions about such a show have involved dealers and collectors in the Chicago area, including APS board member Rich Drews, and Melanie Rogers of the Chicago Philatelic Society, who were both present for the telephonic conference.
English said APS staff would further examine the options for such a show, and he would make a proposal presentation during the next APS board meeting, currently scheduled for Jan. 24, 2017. Although the proposal was not put forward for a vote at the Tuesday meeting, several members of the board voiced strong support for the suggestion that an international show take place in Chicago in 2021.
APS President Mick Zais described the proposal as an APS summer show with an international component.
“We would not try to rival the size or complexity of New York 2016,” he said.
“Or Boston 2026,” English added.
During the public board meeting there was no discussion of possible involvement in the future international shows by the International Federation of Philately, the worldwide philatelic governing body whose own recent board elections stirred up controversy, as Linn’s New York Correspondent Matthew Healey reported on Linns.com.
English also told the APS board that a question has been raised about holding an international show in Omaha in 2019.
“It’s a relatively new idea that’s been put forward to us so we want to explore it a little bit more, and I would also like to report back to the board on that in January, with whether or not we have the capacity, the ability to manage an international in 2019 and in 2021 in both of those venues.”
Zais suggested that English pursue further analysis of the impact that hosting two international shows could have on APS staff, and report back to the board.
Earlier in the meeting, English presented his executive director’s report, and hinted that plans were afoot for a “special event” for attendees at the upcoming Reno winter show, in a partnership with the National Association of Letter Carriers, and Zazzle, an online marketplace that offers personalized postage labels and other products.
The APS “continues to perform ahead of budget by $66,000,” English noted, adding that revenues through October were $82,000 better than budget, and expenses were $28,000 greater than budget.
English also reported that surveys to members and nonmembers were sent by e-mail during the week ending Dec. 3 to 12,200 members and 11,600 nonmembers, with strong initial response rates. Plans call for the data to be gathered and analyzed prior to the March APS board meeting in Reno.
APS membership at the end of November constituted 30,606 members.
The formation of an APS dealer advisory council was approved by the board, again with a unanimous vote.
“For some time, the APS board has had a dealer representative sitting with the board in meetings to serve as the voice of the dealers,” a written report to board members explained.
The proposed council will serve as an advisory group to the APS board and staff “on matters that impact the dealer community, including show locations, membership initiatives, and growth of the hobby.”
The council will include a member of the APS board and the APS dealer representative; both are appointed by the society’s president.
Six additional council members will be elected by the APS dealer members, with four geographic representatives and two at-large representatives.
Nominations from dealer members for the council positions will begin Jan. 9, 2017, and close after Feb. 12. Ballots will be “distributed electronically” beginning Feb. 20, and voting will end March 27.
The terms for the council members will be concurrent with those of the APS board of directors, according to the report.
Finally, English outlined plans for an award to recognize a dealer of the year.
Nominations for the award will be submitted to the APS awards committee in writing, and one award will be given each year. The nominee must be an APS dealer member in good standing.
The first award will be given at APS Stampshow in Richmond, Va., next August, with nominations open until March 15, 2017.
The proposal for the new award was voted on by the board and passed unanimously.
All members of the board were present at the meeting: President Mick Zais; Vice Presidents Trish Kaufmann, Jeff Shapiro, and Robert Zeigler; Secretary Stephen Schumann; Treasurer Bruce Marsden; Directors-at-Large Michael Bloom, Rich Drews, Peter P. McCann, and Mark Schwartz; and Immediate Past President Stephen Reinhard.
This story was updated with new information Dec. 8, 2016.