Ute Wartenberg Kagan

Ute Wartenberg Kagan, President of the ANS & Research Curator

IMG_8356Ute Wartenberg Kagan, whose research interest focus on ancient Greek coinage, has spent most of her academic career in the museum world. Since 1999 she has been the Executive Director of the American Numismatic Society and from 1991 to 1998 she worked as Curator of Greek Coins in the British Museum in London. She has organized many exhibitions in the British Museum and the ANS, including Drachmas, Doubloons and Dollars, The History of Money, which was opened at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in January 2002 by Alan Greenspan and attracted around 30,000 visitors. Dr. Wartenberg Kagan also co-organized with the Athens Numismatic Museum one of the earliest on-line numismatic exhibitions (Presveis: One currency for Europe), which was sponsored by funding from the European Union.

Dr. Wartenberg Kagan takes an active interest in current US coinage. In 2000 she testified in a hearing on coin design organized by the US Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs. In 2002, she was appointed by the Secretary of the Treasury to the Citizens Commemorative Coin Advisory Committee and subsequently to the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee, of which she was Chairman from 2003-2004. Since 2008 she has served as a Trustee of the Saint-Gaudens Memorial, which promotes the work of the sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens.

Her research interests focus on the early archaic coins and economy of Greece and the Achaemenid Empire, and in particular on the role of the earliest coins in electrum and silver in the 6th century BCE. She is also preparing a book on the coinage of the Thessalian city of Pherae, which examines the role of coinage in a region of Greece, which was primarily known for its agricultural richness. Since 1991, she has been working on Coin Hoards, a series dedicated to collecting all information on ancient Greek hoards, which she now edits with Andrew Meadows.

Educated in Saarbrücken, Germany, Dr. Wartenberg Kagan was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University, where she got a doctorate in papyrology. Her publications include over 50 books and articles on papyrology and numismatics, including Coins Hoards VIII and Coin Hoards IX (with Andrew Meadows), After Marathon. War, Society and Money in Fifth-Century Greece; The Oxyrhynchus Papyri. Vol. LXIV. Dr. Wartenberg Kagan is frequently interviewed for newspapers, radio and television. In her spare time she works with her husband and daughter at her farm in upstate New York.

On November 1, 2019 Dr. Ute Wartenberg Kagan stepped down from her position as Executive Director to return to full-time research. She remains at the Society as a full-time Research Curator while also serving as Curator of the Amastris Collection, a private collection of Greek coins. In October 2020, she was elected to the ANS Board of Trustees and as President of the American Numismatic Society, the first female president in the organization’s 162-year history. 

For PDFs of selected articles and chapters see this page.

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