Zais Tapped to Lead Publications

Mitchell "Mick" Zais, a former U.S. Deputy Secretary of Education, is now the chair of the Publications subcommittee of the American First Day Cover Society. Publications is a part of the Education Department of the AFDCS, which is chaired by Michael Lake.
Zais was also briefly Acting Secretary of Education in 2021 and has served as South Carolina Superintendent of Education and president of Newbury College. Before that, the West Point graduate had reached the rank of Brigadier General in the United States Army.
He has often told the story of how he was able to skip a required geography course at the U.S. Military Academy because of the knowledge he had gained from stamp collecting. Today, he specializes in the first day covers of the Army stamps of the Army-Navy Series of 1936-37 (Sc. 785-789).
Mick was elected to the AFDCS Board of Directors, beginning in January 2023. He served as president of the American Philatelic Society from 2016 to 2018, resigning to avoid a conflict of interest with his federal appointment.
"I look forward to working with our team at AFDCS to bring useful and important publications to our members," said Zais. "Most exciting is the recent permission acquired by the Society to re-print the Mellone first day cover catalogs."
The AFDCS has published books, handbooks, and catalogues on everything from the basics of FDC collecting to making cachets, from FDCs of the 1909 commemorative issues to those of the 1988 Cats issue. A complete list can be found in the AFDCS Marketplace. The Education Department of the AFDCS also has a YouTube Channel and produces videos on various facets of FDC collecting.

Calle to Design GASS 2024 Covers

Popular Artist Will Be at AFDCS Booth To Sign Covers, Meet Collectors

Chris Calle greets a collector at the AFDCS booth at GASS 2023

Professional artist Chris Calle again will design the official show cachets for Great American Stamp Show 2024. He also will be at the American First Day Cover Society booth during the show to autograph covers and stamps with his designs and chat with collectors.

During his 40+ years as an illustrator his artwork focused on historical subjects and the theme of space exploration produced in paint and pencil for publications, advertising, coins and FDCs. Chris has designed more than 35 postage stamps for the United States and hundreds more for countries as diverse as Sweden and the Marshall Islands, as well as designs for the United Nations.

Chris’s US postage stamp design work includes the two stamps celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the first Moon Landing jointly designed with his father Paul Calle who designed the iconic #C76 First Man on the Moon stamp in 1969. Perhaps Chris’s most well-known solo artwork is the $2.40 Priority Mail stamp design of 1989 (Sc. 2419), which depicts Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin planting the American flag on the moon. 

For more than a decade Chris has designed the show cachets for the major U.S. summer stamp collecting shows as well as many regional stamp shows throughout the country. Among other stamp and cover design awards, Chris' first day cover cachets have won the top prize in the annual AFDCS contest several times.
The AFDCS is a co-sponsor of the Great American Stamp Show, which includes the Americover first day cover exhibition and announcement of the results of its annual cachetmaking contest. GASS this year is being held in Hartford, Conn., August 15-18, 2024. Admission is free.

Cachetmaker Directory Update

A new edition of the American First Day Cover Society’s AFDCS Directory of Current Cachetmakers is now available. The January 2024 version can be downloaded for free via this link. Printed versions are available for $5.00 postpaid from AFDCS Sales; order here.

Compiled by John White of North Carolina, the directory seeks to list every individual or company currently producing cacheted first day covers, whether or not they are members of the AFDCS. There is no charge for listings; cachetmakers who wish to be included in a future edition should fill out the online form here.  
New editions of the directory are published when there are a number of additions or changes, so the next version may be next month or next year. The link to the latest edition — whatever it is — is on the home page. The January 2024 edition adds 11 cachetmakers, removes 14 and updates six.

© 2024 AFDCS Contact Us