Ackley stays in the room next to Holden's at the Ossenburger wing, separated by a common shower room. Ackley is roommates with Herb Gale whom he calls Ely. According to Holden, Ackley barges in on him "about eighty-five times a day" to snoop around and talk. Holden calls him "Ackley kid" to annoy him.
Ackley has a somewhat obnoxious personality which Holden finds repulsive, though he tolerates him and his unsolicited visits. Ackley has a lot of annoying habits such as cutting his fingernails over the floor, popping his pimples in public, and laughing at things that aren't funny. According to Holden, Ackley hates almost everyone and that he had "just about everything", including sinus trouble, pimples, lousy teeth, halitosis, and crumby fingernails that he feels a little sorry for him.
Ackley strongly despises Holden's roommate Ward Stradlater, who according to him is a "conceited sonuvabitch" and tries to avoid him whenever he is around.
Despite his rather inconsiderate behaviour, Ackley is religious and attends the mass. He takes offense when he thought Holden was making fun of his faith.