Arnold R. Pinkney was born in Youngstown, Ohio to Catherine and David Ellsworth Pinkney. He grew up the youngest of five children in a religious home. While a student at Youngstown public schools, Mr. Pinkney became an outstanding athlete and scholar. He graduated with honors from South Side High and was the first student to earn twelve sport letters. His commitment to service began in high school as he served as Treasurer of his graduating class and President of the Hi-Y Club.