Oct 28, 2015
Rabbi David Lapp is a graduate of Yeshiva University, where he obtained a B.A. degree in Political Science in 1954. He receive his semicha at the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminar in New York in 1957, and in 1972 received an M.A. in religious education from Yeshiva' Ferkauf Graduate School.
He was commissioned in the Army Chaplain Corps in 1958 soon after his ordination. Since he was born in Vienna, in 1931, one of his early assignments from 1960-63, was as an assistant chaplain in Munich, where along with providing programs for Jewish personnel in Munich, Augsburg and Northern Italy, he served as stockade chaplain at Dachau. Ten years later, he returned to Germany as 1st Armored Division Chaplain at Nurnberg. There he supervised 33 chaplains, managed religious programs of all faiths for eight communities and served as budget administrator for religious activities of the 1st Armed Division. He served in Vietnam in 1966-67 as Deputy Field Force Chaplain, ministering to troops assigned to two divisions in II Corps Highlands Area.
Rabbi Lapp's stateside assignments included Fort Bliss, TX; Fort Knox, KY; Fort Hamilton, NY; Fort Monroe, VA; and Deputy Commandant of the Army Chaplain School, Fort Monmouth, NJ.
He is a graduate of the chaplains' basic and advanced courses, Command and General Staff College and the Army War College. He has been affiliated with Department of the Army - Association of Jewish Chaplains Academic Board and the Jewish War Veterans of America. He has been Director of the JWB-Jewish Chaplains Council since November 1982. The JWB which was founded in 1917, serves as the endorsing body for Jewish military chaplains and VA Chaplaincy services. The JWB-JCC Association is the conduit for Lay Leaders and Rabbis who serve in the United States Armed Forces. Also, the Council has the responsibility for providing for the spiritual needs for Jewish military personnel. The director regularly acts as the advisor to the Armed Forces Chaplains Board, the three Chiefs of Chaplains and the US Department of Defense.
Rabbi Lapp retired from the US Army in November 1982 with the rank of Colonel and was awarded the Legion of Merit.