May is Jewish American Heritage Month

by | May 4, 2023 | Other News

An annual recognition and celebration of the more than 350-year history of Jewish achievements and contributions to the fabric of American life and culture in the United States, Jewish American Heritage Month (JAHM) is held during the month of May.

JAHM was first recognized in April 2006 following the passage of resolutions in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. Since then, annual proclamations have been issued by presidents, governors, state legislatures, school boards, and other governing bodies.

With the rise of antisemitism, Jewish American Heritage Month provides an opportunity to counter hatred with education and historical awareness.


Excerpts from a Proclamation on Jewish American Heritage Month, 2023

This month, we celebrate the enduring heritage of Jewish Americans, whose values, culture, and contributions have shaped our character as a Nation.  For generations, the story of the Jewish people — one of resilience, faith, and hope in the face of adversity, prejudice and persecution — has been woven into the fabric of our Nation’s story.  It has driven us forward in our ongoing march for justice, equality, and freedom as we recommit to upholding the principles of our Nation’s founding and realizing the promise of America for all Americans.

Jewish Americans continue to enrich every part of American life as educators and entrepreneurs, athletes and artists, scientists and entertainers, public officials and activists, labor and community leaders, diplomats and military service members, public health heroes, and more.  Last year, I was proud to host the White House’s first-ever Jewish New Year reception.  During our Hanukkah celebration, I was also proud to unveil the first-ever permanent menorah at the White House — reinforcing the permanency of Jewish culture in America.

I have made clear that I will not remain silent in the face of this antisemitic venom, vitriol, and violence.  During my first year in office, I signed the bipartisan COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act to help State and local law enforcement better identify and respond to hate crimes.  I appointed Deborah Lipstadt, a historian of the Holocaust, as the first Ambassador-level Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism.  And my Administration also secured the largest increase in funding ever for the physical security of nonprofits, including synagogues, Jewish Community Centers, and Jewish day schools.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim May 2023 as Jewish American Heritage Month.  I call upon all Americans to learn more about the heritage and contributions of Jewish Americans and to observe this month with appropriate programs, activities, and ceremonies.