Captain, Chaplain Corps, USN (Ret)
Former National Director of Interreligious Affairs, American Jewish Committee
Former Special Assistant for Values and Vision, Secretary and Chief-of-Staff, USAF
Scholar in Residence

Highlights / Shortcuts:

Vietnam and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall

Beirut Terrorist Attack, Camouflage Kippah, and Ronald Reagan

Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust (DRVH)

Reagan-Gorbachev Summit in Reykjavik, Iceland

Repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT)


Scholar in Residence Weekends


Rabbi Arnold E. Resnicoff is a consultant on interfaith values and interreligious affairs; a former line officer who served in Vietnam’s Mekong Delta, followed by assignments with Naval Intelligence Naval Security Group before attending rabbinical school; a retired Navy Chaplain who earned the Defense Superior Service Medal for his work with military and civilian leaders throughout Europe, Africa, and the Mid-East while serving as the Command Chaplain for the U.S. European Command; and a former National Director of Interreligious Affairs for the American Jewish Committee.

From June 2005 to June 2006, he served as Special Assistant (for Values and Vision) to the Secretary and Chief-of-Staff of the U.S. Air Force, with the equivalent military rank of Brigadier General. Headquartered in the Pentagon, this appointment took him to Air Force bases in more than ten countries around the world, including those in Iraq, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates. On June 16, 2006, Secretary of the Air Force Michael Wynne presented him with the USAF Decoration for Exceptional Civilian Service — the highest award that the Air Force can present to a civilian.

Chaplain Resnicoff was part of the small group of Vietnam Veterans who helped create the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, delivering the closing prayer at its 1982 dedication, and its 20th, 25th, and 40th anniversaries.

He was present in Beirut, Lebanon, on Oct 23, 1983, when a suicide truck bomb killed 241 Americans, and wounded 60 others. The report the White House asked him to write about that tragedy was read in full by President Ronald Reagan as his keynote address to the Rev. Jerry Falwell’s “Baptist Fundamentalism 1984” convention in Washington, DC.

His article, Prayers that Hurt: Public Prayer in Interfaith Settings, has been used in many civilian and military chaplain training programs, and two of his own prayers are included in “The Treasury of American Prayer.”

He was the first chaplain to teach a course at a military war college (“Faith and Force: Religion, War, and Peace,” at the Naval War College), was the recipient of the President’s Honor Graduate Award for his time there as a student, and helped establish the annual conference on Leadership and Ethics.

During an official Command Sixth Fleet visit to Israel, he led the first official interfaith (and mixed gender) service at the Western Wall, and the first ceremony in honor of Martin Luther King Day, held at the Israeli President’s residence.

He was the first chaplain to conduct a special conference on ethics for the Camp David staff.

In 1986 he was sent to Iceland to lead Yom Kippur services during the Reagan-Gorbachev summit.

He was the driving force behind the military’s decision to participate in the Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust, and involved in many issues of religion, ethics, and morals in the military, including expanded policies of military accommodation of the free exercise of religion, such as the right of Jewish personnel to wear kippot/skullcaps while in uniform.

In addition to many other honors, Resnicoff has the distinction of offering more Senate and House session prayers than any rabbi in history.

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