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News | Oct. 19, 2018

Judge Advocate Receives Grateful Nation Award

By Navy JAG Corps Public Affairs

On Oct. 10, the Jewish Institute of National Security of America (JINSA) hosted a dinner in Washington, D.C. where JAG community member Lt. Cmdr. Jacob Romelhardt was presented with a Grateful Nation Award. Catherine Herridge, FOX News Chief Intelligence Correspondent, emceed the event.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was given the Henry M. "Scoop" Jackson Distinguished Service Award, and then took part in a question-and-answer session with JINSA President and CEO Dr. Michael Makovsky. Then, six service members – from each of the five branches of the U.S. military and U.S. Special Operations Command – received Grateful Nation Awards.

“The JINSA dinner was a fantastic event,” said Romelhardt. “Meeting the honorees from the other services humbled me.”

Romelhardt was recognized for his many career accomplishments, particularly his deployments to Iraq, Afghanistan, and multiple other locations worldwide, over the course of 10 years, to provide advice on cutting-edge national security policy issues. Based in part on his performance during his 2007-2008 deployment to Fallujah, Iraq, Romelhardt also was entrusted with the honor of teaching a senior-level law course for future leaders of the Navy and Marine Corps.

“It's meaningful how an advisory panel of senior-ranking non-lawyers selected a judge advocate for this award,” he added. “Beyond honoring my specific actions, it shows the warfighters' appreciation for the value and capabilities all uniformed national security attorneys have brought to the complicated, nuanced, and varied legal and political landscapes the military has navigated during the War on Terrorism.”

Romelhardt currently serves as the Department Head for the Legal Assistance Office at Region Legal Service Office Southwest. As the Department Head, Romelhardt is a gifted manager and mentor to nearly 50 brand-new attorneys assigned to the command immediately after law school, once they are commissioned as naval officers.

The Grateful Nation Award was established in 2003, and is presented annually to service members who have distinguished themselves through superior conduct in the War on Terrorism. Honorees are chosen by their respective service and come from the enlisted, noncommissioned officer and junior officer ranks. A video of the event is available on the JINSA website.

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