USCIB members and staff were saddened by the deaths of John Merow, 89, a longtime champion of our work, and his wife Mary Alyce, 85. The couple died on January 12 in a fire at their home in New York City.
Merow, the former chairman of law firm member Sullivan & Cromwell, served as a USCIB board member and corporate secretary for many years. He also served on the board of The USCIB Foundation.
“We are shocked and saddened by the sudden and tragic deaths of John and his beloved Mary Alyce, and we will greatly miss them,” said USCIB President and CEO Peter M. Robinson.
“John was a mentor to me and a guiding spirit to USCIB. In whatever position, he never hesitated to roll up his sleeves and provide solid legal guidance. He was a supporter, champion and friend of the organization and its staff, and was at a meeting in our office the day before he died – showing up, as usual, 15 minutes early.”
Merow led Sullivan & Cromwell through a challenging time of international expansion that included the opening of offices in Australia and Japan. In a statement on his passing, the firm called him “an exemplar of diversity and inclusion, always focused on what truly mattered – an individual’s merits and character. We continue to be inspired by his vision of excellence and inclusiveness.”
Sullivan & Cromwell Senior Chairman Rodgin Cohen, a USCIB trustee, described John as among the “extraordinarily skillful lawyers who thought about the law as a noble calling, and not just as a business or a profession.”
In addition to his volunteer service with USCIB, Merow was a trustee and vice chairman of the New York-Presbyterian Healthcare system. He was a longtime member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a member of the board of the Municipal Art Society of New York. Merow also served for years as senior warden of Saint Thomas Church Fifth Avenue, chairman of the American Australian Association, a director of the Metropolitan Opera Club, the Foreign Policy Association and the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Anglican Communion Fund.
“We will remain forever inspired by John’s positive spirit, generosity, kindness, loyalty, business judgment and sense of humor,” Robinson continued. “He made a mark on our organization and on our lives. Our deep condolences to his family.”
Services for John and Mary Alyce Merow will be held on January 23 at Saint Thomas Episcopal Church, 1 West 53rd Street in New York City. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Council on Foreign Relations and Learning Ally (formerly known as Recording for the Blind).