WHERE I COME FROM
Nick Ficarello was born and raised in Will County, where he has lived his entire life. Nick’s father, Nofrio Ficarello, emigrated from Italy in 1920 and proudly became a U.S. citizen. He served his new country in World War II and was part of the now famous 101st Airborne. Nick’s mother, Edith, was born in the United Sates as a first-generation American citizen. Edith was a Republican and Nofrio was a “Roosevelt Democrat”.
As a young man Nick listened to very interesting viewpoints discussed at the dinner table and became politically aware at a very young age.
Nick graduated from Joliet East High School and went on to study at Joliet Junior College where he earned an Associate Degree in Law Enforcement. During his studies at Joliet Junior College he worked at Johns Manville Manufacturing Company and Caterpillar Manufacturing.
A THRIVING CAREER
Nick was hired by the Will County Sheriff in 1978 as a law enforcement officer and worked his way through the ranks and retired after almost 32 years of public service, retiring as a Deputy Chief in Special Operations and Investigations. During that time, he received a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice and began his pursuit of a Master’s Degree in Political and Social Science. Nick was chosen to attend the prestigious Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Academy in Quantico, Virginia where he graduated with honors. The course focused on Administration and Leadership.
In 1980 Nick was shot and taken hostage responding to a call while on duty at the Will County Sheriff’s Department. Nick made a full recovery from that life-threatening situation and vowed to do everything possible to see that his fellow police officers wouldn’t have the same or similar experience due to lack of personnel or communication issues.
After retiring from the Sheriff’s Department, Nick continued his career working in various police and security positions.
In 2015 Nick was offered the position of Police Chief in Braidwood, Illinois where he served in that capacity for four years.
Nick has a multitude of accomplishments while Chief of Police at Braidwood, which include:
Reduced Burglaries by 54%.
Reduced Thefts by 39%.
Reduced Armed Robbery 100%.
Increased Braidwood’s standing as one of “35 Safest Community in Illinois” according to website safewise.com.
Addressed the opioid epidemic in Braidwood with 122 Hard Drug Felony Arrests.
Initiated a drug addiction rehab program at the Braidwood Police Department specializing in placement and deflection for those seeking help. A total of 37 individuals were placed from 2015 thru 2019.
Nick and his wife, Barb, reside in unincorporated Manhattan with their two rescue dogs. Nick is the proud father of two successful children, their spouses, and three beautiful grandchildren.