Julius Nodel was Rabbi Emeritus of Honolulu's Temple Emanu-El. He had previously served as Rabbi in Cleveland, Ohio, Portland, Oregon, and St. Louis, Missouri. During World War II, he served as a Navy Chaplain aboard an aircraft carrier in the Pacific Theater. He was a graduate of Washington University and the University of Cincinnati's Hebrew Union College, from which he later received an honorary doctorate.
A man of many and varied talents, Rabbi Nodel played concert-level cello, hosted both radio and television programs, and was a much sought after speaker. He was greatly respected for his ecumenical work everywhere he served, and was one of the founders of the Interfaith Clergy Council in St. Louis. Also a successful academician, he served as professor of Jewish Studies at Fontbonne College, and during his time in Honolulu, he was an adjunct professor of religion at Chaminade University, creating a two-year Jewish Studies area in 1986 and 1987.
In 1986 he and his wife Else donated their extensive collection of Judaica, numbering circa 1,300 items, to Chaminade University, where it is available to scholars, researchers, and students. He continued his ties with Chaminade until 1991, when he returned to the St. Louis area. Rabbi Nodel died in January, 1992 at his home in Chesterfield, Missouri.