Larry has been Executive Director of the Philatelic Foundation since June 2010. He has served on the Board of Directors for eleven years having had roles as Treasurer and Secretary.
Having been a member of the philatelic community for decades, Larry's involvement in organized philately has been widespread. He is widely known for his extensive and award winning collections of Carrier and Local stamps, including forgeries, and Western Express covers. Moreover, he has been a leading researcher in his fields of study, having been a recipient of numerous accolades including the U.S. Philatelic Classics Society Carroll Chase Cup (1998) and the Diane D. Boehret Award twice (2009, 2011) for Excellence in Philatelic Literature. He has published works including “The Identifier for Carriers, Locals, Fakes, Forgeries and Bogus Posts of The United States” and “The 2007 Pricing Guide for Unlisted Carriers, Locals, Fakes, Forgeries and Bogus Posts of the United States” along with over 140 original research articles in various journals and publications.
Larry is a member of numerous organizations including the Carriers and Locals Society (Editor-in-chief from 2000-present), the Collectors Club of New York, U.S. Philatelic Classics Society, American Revenue Association and the Western Cover Society.
Consultant Curator, Kiamesha Lake, NY
Lewis Kaufman, who has headed the team of experts at the Philatelic Foundation since the fall of 2004, first became interested in stamps at the age of seven when his father showed him a collection of 1938 Presidential sheets and plate blocks. His interest never waned and continued throughout high school and college. In 1971, after a short three year stint teaching high school history, economics and political science, he was asked to join the firm of Quality Investors, headed by Bob Markovits. There he continued to broaden his knowledge and skills and, in 1980, became a partner in Quality Auctions, which held ten auctions featuring a wide variety of important essays, proofs, stamps and postal history.
Mr. Kaufman left Quality Investors in 1984 and, for the next twenty years, managed his own stamp and collectibles business. In 1985, he was asked to become editor of the Brookman Retail Guide for US and Canadian Stamps and related collectibles. And further, during their eight year association, he also designed and produced Albums and catalogs for Disney, Baseball and Entertainment stamps.
In 1992, and again in 1997, Mr. Kaufman was asked to be a consultant to the Federal Trade Commission, where his expertise contributed to the successful prosecution of cases brought by its Consumer Fraud Division.
Mr. Kaufman is the author of several articles, most appearing in the “Opinions” series produced by the Philatelic Foundation, and is co-author of the chapter on Postage Due Essays and Proofs in the book Postage Due/The United States/ Large Numeral Postage Due Stamps/ 1879-1894 written by George B. Arfken.
Mr. Kaufman has been a member of most major Philatelic societies for over forty years and has served on the Board of Directors of the American Stamp Dealers Association from 1988-1994.
His collecting interests include Postage Dues, having won a gold medal for his exhibit; US Postal Counterfeits; Philatelic Literature and 1920’s-1970’s Jazz, R & B and R & R music.
A fourth generation stamp collector, he started collecting at age six. A specialist in United States First Issue Revenues, he has exhibited nationally and has received numerous gold medals. His presentation before The Collectors Club of New York received the award for that year’s best U.S. lecture.
Professionally he joined Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries in April of 1976 where he served as an auction describer and Vice President for fifteen years. He then spent two years as an auction describer and Vice President of the New York Office of Ivy, Shreve & Mader. Subsequently he served as a consultant to The Philatelic Foundation and Christie’s New York Stamp department. Upon accepting a full time position with Christie’s, he soon became a Christie’s Assistant Vice President. While at Christie’s he helped secure, describe and market Ryohei Ishikawa’s Collection of “United States Stamps and Covers 1847-1869” which was offered in a full color 365 page hardbound catalogue which remains a valuable reference book on classic United States stamps.
When Christie’s re-branded their Stamp and Coin Departments, he became a full Vice President. He became head of Spink America’s Stamp Division where he secured auction properties, wrote auction descriptions and produced their auction catalogues. When Christie’s sold their Spink Divisions to foreign investors, he rejoined The Philatelic Foundation in June 2002 as Senior Expert. He currently assists in the expertizing process, examining all categories of U.S. stamps and postal history in addition to some foreign categories. He has also written several articles which have appeared in the Philatelic Foundation’s well-respected “Opinion” series of handbooks on the expertizing process.
David Petruzelli entered professional philately as an auction describer in early 1978 and worked for a wide range of houses including Louis K. Robbins and Robert Siegel Auction Galleries. In April 1997 he began his current position at the Foundation. A member of the U.S. Philatelic Classic Society for many years, he has a long interest in postal history and color studies, in particular the shades of the 5c 1847 and 3c 1851 stamps. He lives in New York City.
Michael Rosenberg is a lifelong collector of US revenue stamps with a specialty interest in Match and Medicine. He is a 40 year life member of the American Philatelic Society, and a 40 year member of the American Revenue Association and the NY local chapter. After working for two auction houses and several dealers he joined the Philatelic Foundation in 2002. His work at the Foundation includes opening and entering the incoming submissions into the system and linking each patient to an eventual certificate number. He assists with the scanning and is the first screener as the patients get described prior to review. He prepares the worksheets and at the end of the expertizing process he maintains the patient records. He also assists with the expertizing of revenue submissions.
Dr. Martin F. Stempien, Jr
Secretary to the Expert Committee
Martin is a longtime collector of France and French Postal History, specializing in France-U.S. Transatlantic covers. He also collects stamps and covers of Memel and covers of Poland 1918-1921 including mail from the French troops stationed in Poland during this time period.
Since 1988, Martin has been the Secretary to the Chairman of the Expert Committee at the Philatelic Foundation. He is responsible for checking, correcting and editing of the applications for expertization before entry into the system. He is also involved in the production of certificates and their return with invoices to the clients.
Prior to joining the Foundation, Martin was a lot describer for Metro Stamp Co. in Middle Village, New York. He has also served various executive and officer positions at the Collectors Club New York.
Assistant to the Secretary
A life-long New Yorker, Betsy Diaz has been with the Foundation since 1989. Betsy oversees all computer entries and scanning, and every submission goes through her before being given to the experts. In addition, she is the liaison with the outside philatelic consultants.