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Philip Merrill Edit Profile

private sector banker

Philip Merrill, American publisher. Recipient Distinguished Service medal United States Department Defense, 1988.


Merrill, Philip was born on April 28, 1934 in Baltimore.


Bachelor, Cornell University, 1955. Program for Management Development, Harvard Business School, 1963.


Born Philip Merrill Levine, he was a graduate of Cornell University and Harvard Business School. He was president and CEO of Capital-Gazette Communications, Inc., which publishes Washingtonian magazine, the Annapolis Capital, and five other Maryland newspapers. He was appointed to chairman of the Export-Import Bank of the United States by George W. Bush, serving from 2002 to 2005.

He represented the United States in negotiations on the Law of the Sea Conference, the International Telecommunications Union and various disarmament and exchange agreements with the former Soviet Union. For many years he chaired the White House Fellow Commissions regional panels. Merrill also served on President George H.W. Bush's Gulf War Air Power Survey and President Reagan's Commission on Cost Control in the Federal Government.

He served as a long time trustee of the Aspen Institute (and long time executive board member), the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, the Johns Hopkins University, and Cornell University. He was Chairman of the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) and a U.S. Director of the International Institute of Strategic Studies (IISS). He also served on the Department of Defense Business Board, the University of Maryland Board of Visitors, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) board, the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History board, the Foundation for the National Archives, and the Advanced Physics Laboratories board.

Merrill donated $7 million to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. The building, the Phillip Merrill Center, was awarded the first LEED platinum certificate in the country. In 2001, Merrill donated $10 million to the Philip Merrill College of Journalism at the University of Maryland, College Park.

Merrill donated $4 million in 2003 to create the Philip Merrill Center for Strategic Studies at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). Eliot A. Cohen is the director of the Merrill Center. Merrill donated the funds to build the Cornell Sailing Center at Cornell University which is named for the Merrill Family and was dedicated in 2009.

Merrill disappeared while sailing alone on the Chesapeake Bay on June 10, 2006. He was initially believed to have been lost at sea, and his body was found on June 19. The medical examiner ruled Merill's death a suicide.


  • In 1988, he received the Department of Defense Distinguished Civilian Service Award from the then Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger, the highest civilian honor given by the United States Department of Defense. The American Council of Trustees and Alumni annually awards The Philip Merrill Award for Outstanding Contributions to Liberal Arts Education.


Delaware United States of America Short Wave Treaty, United States of America Law of the Sea Treaty. Trustee Cornell University, University Maryland Foundation, Aspen Institute. Board directors Center Strategic and Internt.

Studies, Johns Hopkins School Advanced International Studies. Board directors Johnson School Management Cornell University, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Federal City Council, University Maryland School Public Policy. Member Gulf War Air Power Survey, 1991-1992.

Member Council Foreign Relations, Institute International Strategic Studies, Chief Executives Organization, World President Organization.


Married Eleanor Merrill. Children: Douglas, Catherine, Nancy.

Eleanor Merrill

Nancy Merrill

Douglas Merrill

Catherine Merrill