Military Bios

Chaplain (Maj. Gen.) William J. Dendinger:

Military Branch:United States Airforce
Retired May 1, 2001.  
Chaplain (Maj. Gen.) William J. Dendinger is chief of the Air Force Chaplain Service, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C. As a member of the special staff of the chief of staff, he advises on all matters that pertain to the religious and moral welfare of Air Force personnel. Also, he is responsible for establishing an effective total chaplain program to meet the religious needs of all members of the Air Force. As chief of the chaplain service, he is the senior pastor of a combined active-duty, Guard, Reserve and civilian force of more than 850,000 people serving at approximately 1,300 locations in the United States and overseas. He leads an Air Force Chaplain Service of approximately 2,200 chaplains and enlisted support personnel from the active and Air Reserve components. As a member of the Armed Forces Chaplains Board, he and other members function as advisers to the secretary of defense and the Joint Chiefs of Staff on religion, ethical and quality-of-life concerns.
The chaplain entered the Air Force in 1970 after serving five years in civilian parishes and teaching in Catholic high schools in the archdiocese of Omaha, Neb. He has served at every level of responsibility in the chaplain service: wing, major command and Air Staff.
1961 Bachelor of arts degree in philosophy and English, Immaculate Conception Seminary, Conception, Mo.
1964 Master of arts degree in theology, Aquinas Institute, Dubuque, Iowa
1969 Master of science degree in counseling, Creighton University, Omaha, Neb.
1973 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
1978 Graduate studies, School of Applied Theology, Berkeley, Calif.
1987 Air War College, by seminar
1. July 1970 - July 1972, base chaplain, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
2. July 1972 - December 1974, base chaplain, Yokota Air Base, Japan
3. December 1974 - August 1978, cadet wing chaplain, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo.
4. August 1978 - September 1979, student, School of Applied Theology, Berkeley, Calif.
5. September 1979 - September 1980, base chaplain, Osan Air Base, South Korea
6. September 1980 - January 1982, base chaplain, Mather Air Force Base, Calif.
7. January 1982 - February 1985, member, chaplain resource board, USAF Chaplain Service Institute, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
8. February 1985 - May 1988, base chaplain, Hahn Air Base, West Germany
9. June 1988 - June 1993, plans and programs officer, and later chief of plans and programs division, Office of the Air Force Chief of Chaplains, Bolling Air Force Base, D.C.
10. June 1993 - September 1995, command chaplain, Headquarters Air Combat Command, Langley Air Force Base, Va.
11. September 1995 - June 1997, deputy chief of the Air Force Chaplain Service, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
12. June 1997 - present, chief of the Air Force Chaplain Service, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Washington, D.C.
Distinguished Service Medal
Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster
Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters
Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with three oak leaf clusters
National Defense Service Medal with service star
1994 Named a prelate of honor with the title of Reverend Monsignor by His Holiness Pope John Paul II
Captain Jun 17, 1970
Major May 1, 1979
Lieutenant Colonel Jan 1, 1984
Colonel May 1, 1989
Brigadier General Sep 29, 1995
Major General Aug 1, 1997


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