Albanian-American Imam Tahir Kukaj is the newest NYPD Chaplain

Today was a great day for me, my family and my community at large.

Monday, June 24, 2019 was one of my happiest days, it was my swearing ceremony as a NYPD Muslim Chaplain.

I would like to take this moment and thank NYPD Commissioner The Honorable James P. O’Neill for the trust you placed on me for the Chaplain‘s position and for your great leadership in bringing harmony in NYPD family.
I’ve been honored to work very closely with Chief Nilda Hofmann, Chief Edward Delatorre and our great Commanding Officer Chief Kenneth Corey, thank you for your trust and your support, looking forward to working together these great NYPD Leaders and also I want to thank very much Deputy Inspector Isa Abbassi 120 Precinct Commanding Officer for his continued support during these years as well I like to thank Deputy Inspector Paul Valerga whom I had the honor working together in so many occasions. Special thanks and gratitude for Chief of Chaplain’s Unit Chief Rabbi Dr. Alvin Kass, Deputy Chief Monsignor Robert Romano, Lieutenant Steven Jerome for their trust and their support in the process of my path to become a NYPD Muslim Chaplin. I look forward to this wonderful opportunity to help the greatest Police Department in the world.

Special thanks for NYPD Muslim Officers Society’s President Captain Adeel Rana, Lieutenant Rafet Awad, Detective Mohamed Amen and other NYPD-MOS members for their support and trust.
It was my honor and privilege to work closely with Commissioner Marco Carrion Mayor’s Community Affairs Commissioner for so many years, his support and dedication in building Bridges of cooperation between Mayor’s office and different communities was outstanding, I thank him for his support and his leadership.
Great sense of gratitude goes for our amazing Assemblyman Charles Fall, his support and encouragement remarkable.
In this great occasion I need to give thanks to where is due to the Albanian Islamic Cultural Center for their continued support for almost two decades , AICC President Dr. Zurkani Vardar and Imam Ferid Bedrolli the Secretary. I want to say that all the great work of outreach with NYPD and in interfaith activities for these so many years, AICC was the Center that has offered all it’s facilities and means in serving Staten Island and New York City.
I’m honored to have the support of COJO Organization and it’s President Rabbi Mendy Mirocznik, Rabbi Joseph Potasnik, Rabbi Bob Kaplan, Bishop Dr. Victor Brown Mt. Sinai United Christian Church Rabbi Ari Weiss, and Illyrian Society Det. Elton Shametaj, Sergeant Mourad Mourad MiddleEast & Turkic Society, Albanian Roots Marko Kepi and former Senator Marty Golden, Turkish Community Ibrahim Kurtulus and so many New York Leaders and Clergies!
As I begin my new role in the department I also want to thank all the partners of various faiths, community leaders, elected officials for your continued support. I look forward to maintaining those relationships, enhancing them and building new ones.

I would also like to take this moment to introduce myself to the Finest men and women of the best police department in the world. I want the officers to know that I am always available 24/7 if you ever need anything or need someone to talk to. I am here to serve and listen to you. Let’s look out for each other and make the lives of our officers and community a great one.

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