Harold “Hal” Bernsen, is a retired US Navy Rear Admiral.
As a Captain, based in Bahrain in 1980, he commanded USS Lasalle the flagship of Commander Middle East Force. Selected for flag rank in 1984 his first assignment was Director of Plans and Policy at US Central Command. From 1986 to 1988, during the tanker war with Iran, he served as Commander Middle East Force, forerunner of today’s Fifth Fleet, home ported in Bahrain. He retired from the Navy in 1991.
As a civilian Bernsen engaged in various business ventures primarily in the Middle East. To further his personal interest in improving American’s understanding and appreciation of the Arab world he has served on non-profit boards devoted to that end, in particular as Director (20 yrs) and Chairman (6 yrs) of the National Council on Arab Relations. He is a Director Emeritus of the National US Arab Chamber of Commerce.