2021 Distinguished Topical Philatelist

Dale E. Smith, immediate past ATA president, has been selected to receive our association’s highest award, Distinguished Topical Philatelist. This award is presented each year to an individual who has provided outstanding service to philately, and especially topical philately.

Dale has served on the ATA board since 2011. He became first vice president in 2012 and president in 2016. In addition to his many ATA projects, he is membership secretary of the Gladstone Stamp Club and is active in the Midwest Philatelic Society. He is a member of six ATA affiliated study units and three ATA affiliated chapters.

“Herbert Hoover said, ‘It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit,’” said ATA president Dawn Hamman. “That sums up Dale’s incredible contribution to ATA, philately and many other worthy causes in a nutshell. He operates under the radar. He does not seek recognition, and, in fact, gives it to others.”

During Dale’s tenure as ATA president, he invigorated fundraising and was able to secure the organization’s future with financial leadership and by adding to our reserves.

Under Dale’s leadership we have added some extremely talented people to our ATA family: webmaster Alyn Lunt, database coordinators Beth Scully and Dom Sgro, Taste of Topicals coordinator Barbara Asher and, of course, executive director Jennifer Miller. In 2019 he was part of the team that organized and implemented the moving of the ATA office from Illinois to South Carolina.

Dale is a consummate topical collector with wide-ranging interests: stamps on stamps, HIV/AIDS on stamps, pharmacy, winter scenes, Christmas seals, Pony Express and George Washington Carver. In 2002, Dale and his wife Andrea started their topical stamp dealership, Stamp Smith. The main focus of the business has always been topicals.

Dale’s leadership goes beyond philately. A graduate of the University of Missouri, Kansas City, Dale has served as president of its alumni association, and is currently on the dean’s advisory council and the LGBTQ Scholarship Foundation. He has served as president of 15 non-profit organizations over 45 years.

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