Three Canadians named fellows of world’s oldest philatelic society

Three leading Canadian philatelists have been named fellows of the oldest philatelic society in the world.

The 2023 fellows of the United Kingdom’s Royal Philatelic Society London (RPSL) were approved by its council on Dec. 7. The 36 new fellows include British Colombia’s Ed Kroft and Jan Hofmeyr and Ontario’s David McLaughlin.

“My personal opinion is there are certain kudos to being a fellow of the oldest philatelic society in the world, and personal satisfaction of being able to use the letters FRPSL after one’s name,” says Steven Harrison, the honorary secretary of the RPSL.

According to its website, the criteria considered by the fellowship committee include:

·       service to the society through volunteering or presentation of a display or paper

·       noteworthy contributions to philately in general

·       publication of an article in the London Philatelist or other philatelic journal, or publication of philatelic books

Harrison explains the closing date for nominations each year is the end of September.

Jan Hofmeyr won the 2022 Chicagopex Single-Frame Champion of Champions award for his exhibit, ‘The Process That Led to the ‘Grill’ Stamps of the United States.

“The nominations then go to the fellowship committee, which is comprised of past presidents, the current president, and the current vice-presidents. The proposed list of the new fellows then goes to council for ratification.”

Harrison says there is no signing ceremony. The new fellows will each receive a certificate signed by the president and honorary president. Plus, the new fellows can now use the letters FRPSL after their name.

An active exhibitor, author, accredited international-level FIP philatelic judge (postal history) and juror, and a national-level judge, Kroft is a past president of the Royal Philatelic Society of Canada (RPSC) and serves as its honorary legal counsel. He served two terms as president of the Society of Israel Philatelists (SIP) and now serves the SIP as a board member and as a member of its research committee.  He has been actively involved on the executive of SIP for more than 20 years. In 2012, Kroft was the winner of the SIP’s Reggel award for outstanding contributions to Holy Land philately.  In 2013, he was awarded the RPSC’s Geldert Medal and was named the 2017 recipient of the Jennings Award from the American Association of Philatelic Exhibitors.  In 2020, SIP awarded Kroft the Dickstein award for outstanding philatelic writing and research.

South African philatelist Hofmeyr, who now resides in British Columbia, won the 2022 Chicagopex Single-Frame Champion of Champions award for his exhibit, “The Process That Led to the ‘Grill’ Stamps of the United States.” Hofmeyr qualified by winning the grand single-frame award at the RPSC’s national virtual exhibition presented Oct. 14-17, 2021.

David McLaughlin, an international-level judge, chaired CAPEX 22 and was recently appointed president of the Vincent Graves Greene Philatelic Research Foundation..

McLaughlin is also an active Canadian exhibitor, national and international level judge, a past RPSC director, chair of the RPSC’s international liaison committee, a director with the Federacion InterAmericana de Filatelia, and serves on the executive of the Philatelic Specialist Society of Canada. McLaughlin is also the current president of the British North America Philatelic Society and, in November, was appointed president of the Vincent Graves Greene Philatelic Research Foundation. McLaughlin was also the “concept originator” and chair of CAPEX 22, the world’s first international One Frame Stamp Championship Exhibition, held in Toronto in June 2022.

John McEntyre of Quebec was named a Fellow in 2022. Ottawa philatelic dealer Chris Green, an active member of several specialist societies, received the honour in 2020. Sam Chiu, who serves as the current past president of the RPSC and is an accredited national and international level judge involved with several philatelic societies, was named to the fellowship in 2019.

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