In Memoriam: Jerome Shaw, BSEE ’49, Honorary Ph.D. ‘91

September 13, 1926 – May 3, 2018
La Jolla, California

Jerome Shaw, a pioneering businessman and co-founder of Volt Information Sciences, died at home in La Jolla on May 3, 2018. He was 91 years old. The son of Eastern European immigrants, he was born in Brooklyn in 1926. Jerry served in the Navy during World War II, and then attended New Mexico State University where he earned a degree in electrical engineering under the GI Bill. In 1950, Jerry, along with his older brother Bill, launched a business at their mother’s kitchen table with a mere $13. Reflective of their circumstances, the name “Volt” was inspired by its dictionary definition, the electrical term for “a unit of potential.” In 1958, Jerry moved to California with a group of technical writers and helped secure a key contract related to the Atlas Missile project. From there, he helped steer the growth of the business into a prominent publishing services and staffing company. Today, Volt employs over 20,000 people worldwide. Jerry believed in the vital role of education in building tomorrow’s workforce. He endowed scholarships at major universities, including his alma mater, New Mexico State University. He also provided grants for local elementary and high schools, inspiring many culturally diverse students to complete their education and pursue business careers. He also started and supported programs responsible for the hiring of military veterans. Along with his wife, Joyce Cutler Shaw, a distinguished artist and educator who passed away in April, they were also active supporters of medical research and the arts. Jerry received an Honorary Doctorate of Laws from New Mexico State University in 2001, the distinguished Ellis Island Medal of Honor in 2008, and as an industry pioneer, Jerry was inducted into the Leadership Hall of Fame of the American Staffing Association. In spite of all his success, Jerry was remarkably humble. To everyone who knew him, including the thousands of Volt employees past and present, he will best be remembered as a mentor, advocate, and friend. Jerry is survived by his children, Michael, Steven and Rachel Shaw, his daughter-in-law, Sara Warshaw, and his two grandchildren, Alexander and Leo Shaw. That family requests that, in lieu of flowers, a donation be made to an educational organization. A memorial will be held for Jerry at The Lodge at Torrey Pines in La Jolla on Saturday, June 9th at 10:30 am.

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