Joel P. Moskowitz was the co-founder and long-time chairman and CEO of Ceradyne, a company based in Costa Mesa that develops, manufactures and markets advanced technical ceramic products. Over the course of his tenure at Ceradyne, the company grew dramatically to become the 35th largest public company in Orange County. Ceradyne’s performance in 2004 earned Mr. Moskowitz honorable mention as “Businessperson of the Year” in Orange County Business Journal.
Mr. Moskowitz served on the Board of Trustees of Alfred University. Mr. Moskowitz obtained a B.S. in Ceramic Engineering from Alfred University in 1961 and an M.B.A. from the University of Southern California in 1967. He was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Science degree by Alfred University in 2005. At the Effective Time on November 28, 2012, in accordance with the Merger Agreement, Joel P. Moskowitz ceased serving as member of Ceradyne's board of directors. On November 28, 2012, Joel P. Moskowitz ceased to be President and Chief Executive Officer of Ceradyne and became Vice President Strategic Planning.
Joel Moskowitz passed away in March 2015. It was an honor for Chapman50 to have the involvement and friendship of this extraordinary business leader. President Jim Doti announced the passing of Joel Moskowitz, a friend and trustee of Chapman University, with the following letter to the campus community.
I’m sorry to report the passing of our friend and Chapman trustee Joel Moskowitz, after battling cancer this past year.
"Joel was the co-founder and long-time chairman and CEO of Ceradyne, a company based in Costa Mesa that develops, manufactures and markets advanced technical ceramic products. Over the course of his tenure at Ceradyne, the company grew dramatically to become the 35th largest public company in Orange County. Ceradyne’s performance in 2004 earned Joel honorable mention as “Businessperson of the Year” in Orange County Business Journal.
"Philanthropic interests of Joel and his wife, Ann, include Chapman University’s Rodgers Center for Holocaust Education. They have also given generously to his alma mater, Alfred University in New York. Other areas of the Moskowitz’ philanthropy include Accelerated Cure (for Multiple Sclerosis) project, Brooklyn College Foundation, National Jewish Health and Hoag Hospital Foundation.
"About six months ago, I visited with Joel at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, where he was receiving cancer treatments. It was a visit I will never forget. Joel was upbeat and animated but resigned to whatever his fate might be. He told me that he had been spending more time reading the Bible, particularly the stories of David, Saul and Samuel and the theological lessons to be learned from them. Joel’s eyes twinkled when he explained the Biblical roots of why Tuesday is a lucky day in Jewish culture. As Joel shared his recent theological discoveries with me, it was readily apparent that what gave him the most joy was intellectual inquiry and the search for truth.
"Most revealing about his character, though, was when one of his nurses came into his hospital room. Not only did he introduce me to Amita, he regaled me with stories about her life and the wonderful care she was giving him. It always struck me that Joel was a people person, but the fact that he found so much of genuine interest to share about his caregiver brought that people-loving attribute of his home for me.
"I wish also to acknowledge Joel’s loving wife, Ann, who was his principal caregiver during these particularly difficult last few months. She always greeted me with a warm smile and an encouraging word, even as Joel’s health deteriorated. She is a brave and remarkable woman. Joel emphasized the strength of his partnership with Ann when he told me that she fully supported him when they’d once had to mortgage their home to meet payroll and keep his struggling business alive. I can well understand why Joel often told me that the luckiest day of his life was the day he met Ann.
"It was a lucky day for me, too, when I had the privilege of meeting Joel and becoming his friend."