March 27, 2024


Mazel Tov to Friends of the Jewish Chapel (FOJC) Board Member, Jerry Miller (USNA ’77), who was honored as a United States Naval Academy Distinguished Graduate in a ceremony 22 March in Annapolis.

This award recognizes living USNA graduates who have made a distinctive contribution to their field and community and demonstrated sustained, active support for our school and its mission. Only 110 alumni have been so honored since the award was created 26 years ago. Previous winners include a President, Senator, Medal of Honor recipients, Secretaries, titans of industry, trailblazing persons of courage and character, astronauts and world class athletes.

Jerry spoke eloquently about how his Jewish faith is a cornerstone of his life and ethical businesses. He left active duty in 1985 and has continuously served the Navy as an entrepreneur in the maritime industries focusing on shipyards in the greater Norfolk area, and the Naval Academy as a philanthropist.

There would not be a Commodore Uriah P. Levy Center and Jewish Chapel at USNA without Jerry’s extraordinary generosity. The beautiful chapel itself, where Jewish Midshipmen pray every week, is named in honor of his parents.

Jerry and his wife Laura were not only instrumental in the establishment, funding, and construction of the Levy Center and Jewish Chapel, but continue to serve as Board Members and they personally sponsor a six-week summer STEM study program for USNA Midshipmen (“Miller Scholars”) which includes a month at the University of Haifa and the opportunity to experience life in the Holy Land and forge ties with Israelis.

Jerry joins two other Jewish USNA Distinguished Graduates with this honor: RADM Maurice Rindskopf ’38 (WWII submarine Commanding Officer and former Director of Naval Intelligence) and RADM Bob Wertheim ’46 (Cold War era leader and technical director of game changing USN submarine and shipboard missile systems).

Included in the photo montage are several of the many Jewish Midshipmen who were there to cheer on and thank Jerry, with Laura and fellow FOJC Board Members Ret. VADM Dave Architzel (USNA ’73) and Holocaust Survivor Benno Gerson (USNA ’61). Also present but had to leave before sundown at Shabbat and photos, Jerry’s longtime friend, Rabbi (Ret. USN CAPT) Arnie Resnicoff.

Again, Jerry, MAZEL TOV! We’re kvelling!