Director of the United States Mint: Who Is David J. Ryder?

Thursday, October 26, 2017
David J. Ryder

If nothing else, David J. Ryder does have the proper experience for the job to which he was appointed October 3, 2017. If he’s confirmed, this will be the second time he has run the United States Mint, which is responsible for making, selling and protecting the coinage of the United States.


David Jerome Ryder was born October 14, 1955, in Billings, Montana, and grew up in Boise, Idaho. His father, John, was a pilot for the Bureau of Reclamation in the Interior Department.


Ryder attended Boise State University. He worked in business in Washington before joining the Reagan administration in the early 1980s. He was a special assistant to Secretary of Agriculture John Block, and in 1983 was named deputy commissioner of section in the Commerce Department and director of the U.S. pavilion at the 1984 Louisiana World Exposition. The following year, he was made commissioner of section.


In 1985, Ryder was named director of advance arrangements for out-of-town trips and deputy assistant to Vice President George H.W. Bush. He left the administration in 1986 to become director of operations for TCOM Systems, which developed computer-enhanced products that electronically distributed mass mailings for the US Postal Service. Ryder returned to politics in 1988 as director of operations for the Republican National Convention, and after the election was director of management and operations for Bush’s transition team. When the new administration took office, Ryder was named deputy chief of staff to Vice President Dan Quayle.


Ryder was named deputy treasurer of the United States in 1990. On July 26, 1991, Bush nominated Ryder to be director of the Mint. However, Sen. Alan Cranston (D-California) blocked his nomination for reasons unrelated to Ryder himself. Finally, almost a year later, he was named acting director of the Mint. On September 3, 1992, Bush gave him a recess appointment to the end of the first session of the 103rd Congress, so he continued to serve through the first ten months of the Bill Clinton administration. Despite his relatively brief tenure in office, he continued to be active in Mint-related affairs. In 1995, as a spokesman for Save the Greenback, he actively opposed a Republican plan to replace one-dollar bills with coins and even testified before the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee on the subject.


In 1994, Ryder took over as the founding president of Secure Products, which manufactured anti-counterfeiting systems. The company was sold in 2007 to Honeywell, but Ryder remained as global business development manager for what was now the company’s authentication technology group until May 2017.


Ryder met his wife, the former Margaret Mary (Monie) Murphy, when she worked at the White House during the Reagan era. During the administration of President George H.W. Bush, she was associate director of the Office of Presidential Personnel. They were married in 1983 and have two children, Nick and Caroline.

-Steve Straehley, David Wallechinsky


To Learn More:

Nomination of David J. Ryder to Be Director of the Mint

November 22, 1991 Confirmation Hearing

Prepared Statement of David J. Ryder, October 24, 2017 Confirmation Hearing (pdf)

Ryder says Measures to Combat Counterfeiting of U.S. Bullion Coins Top Priority (by Paul Gilkes, Coin World)


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