AJC honored Ambassador Philip Murphy with its prestigious “Ernst Cramer Award for Outstanding Contributions to German-American Jewish Understanding.”
The award was presented to Murphy for his service as U.S. ambassador to Germany (2009-2013), at an AJC event at the Jewish Museum in New York. More than 150 guests attended. Previously, Murphy served as head of the Goldman Sachs office in Frankfurt.
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The inscription on the award states: “Presented to Ambassador Philip Murphy in recognition of his steadfast commitment and spirited dedication to Jewish affairs, Jewish-German relations and to the State of Israel.”
“I am proud to be a recipient of an award named after an extraordinary individual, bestowed on me by a pathbreaking American Jewish organization, ” said Murphy. “I have always experienced AJC to be at the forefront of the critical transatlantic issues of our day.”
Ernst Cramer was a distinguished journalist and publisher with the Axel Springer publishing company in Germany. He was a German Jew who fled to the U.S., returning as an American soldier. He ended up staying to work with this unique publishing house that remains a bastion of pro-American, pro-Israeli sentiment in Germany.
When Murphy arrived in Berlin as U.S. Ambassador in 2009, he soon encountered and benefitted from Cramer’s transatlantic experience and wisdom. A conference room at the U.S. Embassy in Berlin was named for Ernst Cramer shortly before his death, at the age of 96, in 2010.
“Phil Murphy is a bridge builder across continents, laying the foundation for a new and more diverse generation of transatlanticists, ” said Steven Wisch, co-chair of AJC Berlin, who presented the award to Murphy, and who has been a close friend of Murphy for nearly three decades. “He harbors a deep and abiding commitment to Jewish life and security for Jewish communities. He is a staunch advocate of U.S.-Israeli and German-Israeli relations.”
Anthony Meyer, a member of the AJC National Board of Governors, and who serves as the other co-chair for AJC Berlin, also attended the event.
The Ernst Cramer Award is given bi-annually to an individual or institution for outstanding contributions in the field of American Jewish – German understanding. The three past recipients were Michael Blumenthal, founding director of the Jewish Museum Berlin and former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury; the Konrad Adenauer Foundation; and Lawrence and Lee Ramer for their work launching the Ramer Institute for German-Jewish Relations that is an integral part of AJC Berlin.