Highlands Resident Russell Karshmer, a cadet in the jNROTC program at MAST, the Marine Academy of Science and Technology, was honored at last week’s meeting of the Monmouth County Commissioners for his winning design of the commemorative coin for the Commissioning of the nation’s next fast attack submarine  – the USS NEW JERSEY (SSN 796).

In presenting a certificate of appreciation to the cadet, Commissioner Director Thomas Arnone praised his talent and ingenuity in creating a design that not only featured the submarine, but also numerous historic highlights of Monmouth County and the state.

Each of the four other Commissioners joined the Director in their praise of the cadet and his work. 

Karshmer, who is a junior at MAST, explained the design which will appear on the back of the commissioning coin – commemorating this significant and historic event.  The ship is currently scheduled to be commissioned at NWS Earle in Leonardo, NJ on September 14, 2024.  He also spoke about why he included all the different aspects of the artwork. His design, selected by the Commissioning Committee, was selected from more than 300 submitted by high school students from throughout New Jersey.

Peter Engleman, a member of the USS New Jersey commissioning committee was also present for the ceremony.  Peter was given a few minutes to explain the significance of the commissioning, and to highlight the role that submarines play in protecting our freedoms.