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Former treasurer speaks at North

December 17, 2002|by PEPPER BALLARD

pepperb@herald-mail.com

HAGERSTOWN - Lead a good life and save money while doing it was former U.S. Treasurer Mary Ellen Withrow's message to North Hagerstown High School government and business students Monday.

Withrow, who served as treasurer of the United States under former President Clinton from 1994-2001, discussed her eight-year term.

"Yesterday is a canceled check, tomorrow is a promissory note and today is cash," she said.

As treasurer, Withrow was responsible for the operations of the United States Mint, which makes U.S. coins, and the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, which prints paper money.

She said the first treasurer of the United States was responsible for raising money to pay for the Revolutionary War and the current treasurer, Rosario Marin, is not responsible for either the mint or the bureau. She said she wonders what the treasurer's job will entail 50 years from now.

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Under Withrow's term, paper money was redesigned, the state quarter program was started and the Sacagawea $1 coin was introduced.

More money was produced than ever before in U.S. history, mostly due to a good economy, which resulted in higher production, she said.

Withrow's signature appears in the left hand corner of every bill produced during her time in office.

"Yeah, I like that," she said with a laugh. "In fact I was wild about it."

Withrow said being treasurer was a wonderful job because she got up in the morning and actually made money.

She said she was the first person to have held the post of treasurer at all three levels of government - local, state and national. She worked in Ohio county and state governments before taking the federal position.

Withrow, a Bethesda, Md., resident, now works for a private firm, Capital Enterprise Consulting, that works on state and local financial issues.

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