Rabbi Lowell Kronick
US Department of Veteran Affairs
Mar 8, 2014
In the four decades since his ordination in 1970 by the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary of Yeshiva University, Rabbi Lowell S. Kronick has provided clinical pastoral care and support to thousands of patients, families, and staff, as well as many dying patients. His special interests are long-term-care, palliative-care and hospice ministry, bereavement counseling, clinical bioethics consultation, and chaplaincy education; he is a popular lecturer and presenter on these topics.
During his first three decades of service, he served as an assistant shul rabbi, a chaplain and director of public relations for the Bialystoker Home and Infirmary for the Aged, a synagogue administrator, and Director of Pastoral Services at Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care and Rehabilitation, a 527-bed major rehabilitation and long-term-care facility in New Hyde Park, NY. He chaired Parker’s Bioethics Committee (1992-2001), its Human Subjects Review Committee (IRB; 1998-2001), and its Pain Management and Palliative Care Process Improvement Team (1999-2001).
In October 2001, Rabbi Kronick joined the National Veterans Affairs Chaplain Center in Hampton, Virginia, as an Associate Director for Jewish Affairs. In 2005, he became its Associate Director for Education. He plays a significant role in devising major policy initiatives and responses important to the VA's Central Office and the chaplain field. In addition to teaching, he devises curricula, he serves on ethics committees, including the National VA Ethics Committee. In 2008, he was awarded the William A. Nelson Award for Excellence in Health Care Ethics.
Continually refining his pastoral and clinical skills throughout his long career, he completed specialty training and education in advanced pastoral studies; family, marital, and bereavement counseling, and earned four units of Clinical Pastoral Education. In addition, he received certification as a clinical bioethics consultant from the Certificate Program in Bioethics and Medical Humanities under the joint auspices of Montefiore Medical Center Department of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons Center for the Study of Society and Medicine. He is a board-certified chaplain by the Association of Professional Chaplains (APC), the National Association of Veterans Affairs Chaplains (NAVAC), and the National Association of Jewish Chaplains (NAJC). He served as NAJC’s Certification Commission Chair, as well as NAJC President from 2008-2010.
Rabbi Kronick was the first president of the Association of Orthodox Rabbis in Long Term Care, the forerunner of today's RCA Healthcare Chaplaincy Committee. At the RCA's 51st Annual Convention in April, 2010, he became the first recipient of the RCA's Healthcare Chaplain of the Year award. He was recognized for his lifetime achievements as a leader in the field of professional health care chaplaincy and for his dedicated and distinguished service as a geriatric and subacute rehabilitation hospice chaplain..