2045.55
2.40
22.74
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898.83
3.63
998.42
0.52

What is the CCAC?

Posted on September 17, 2021

Coin collectors are acutely aware of every detail and design choice on newly minted coins. This impacts the demand for a given coin, as well as its potential future value. As such, members of the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC) who have a say in the design of new coinage in the United States wield great power and responsibility of which all coin collectors should be aware.

What is the CCAC?

The Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC) is a panel of public numismatic and financial experts who assist the U.S. Treasury (the U.S. Mint is a subsidiary of the Treasury) with designing and producing a variety of coinage. Types of coinage the CCAC advises on include:

  • Circulating coins
  • Bullion coins
  • Congressional gold medals
  • Other national medals

The CCAC is a body currently consisting of 11 members who have either been appointed by public officials or who are specially qualified for their role in the CCAC. All CCAC members act as an impartial resource to assist the Secretary of the Treasury in minting new United States coinage. The members of the CCAC hold a four-year term and are chosen based on their qualifications or appointment by other public officials. The makeup of the committee is as follows:

  • One member coin collection curator
  • One member sculptor or artistic creator
  • One member with an American history background
  • One member with vast knowledge in numismatics
  • Three members to represent the public
  • Four members chosen by high-ranking government officials 

The current chair of the CCAC is Mary N. Lannin, a lifelong member of the American Numismatic Association and American Numismatic Society, where she is also a board member.  

History

In 2003, Congress enacted Public Law 108-15 which established the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee through the following language:

“There is hereby established the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (in this section referred to as the ‘Advisory Committee’) to advise the Secretary of the Treasury on the selection of themes and designs for coins.”

Still, the CCAC doesn’t have complete control over the design of coins. Instead, the committee meets regularly and comes to a set of recommendations submitted in a letter to the Secretary of the Treasury, who can then change or alter the committee’s recommendations before production as they see fit. As a public body, the CCAC hosts its meetings open to the press and public, and the minutes, along with audio recordings of all meetings, are maintained for public record.

Over the years, the CCAC has been instrumental in the creation of some recent coins valued by collectors. These include updated mintings of the 2021 commemorative Morgan Dollar and Peace Dollar coins as well as the American the Beautiful coin series. 

In recent meetings, the committee discussed the design for 2022 quarters honoring the following women:

  • Wilma Mankiller - the first female principal chief of the Cherokee Nation
  • Adelina “Nina” Otero-Warren - the first Hispanic woman to run for U.S. Congress
  • Anna May Wong - the first Chinese-American Hollywood star

Why is the CCAC important?

The CCAC acts as a voice for coin collectors and numismatic enthusiasts around the United States. Its members are firmly entrenched in the numismatic community and serve to represent all coin collectors who seek the most elegant and high-quality designs for new coinage.

While the CCAC has no bearing on coins already produced and minted by the U.S. Mint, it does have an important role for collectors of modern coins. CCAC members are not paid for their work and have a clear appreciation and love of coins and U.S. currency. Coin collectors would do well to appreciate the role the CCAC has in what coins could be coming in the future and its members’ ability to advocate for numismatic enthusiasts around the country.