Ceremony Recognizes Rosemont Cops, 36 New Auxiliary Members
By DIANE TURNER-HURNS
Journal & Topics Reporter
As Rosemont’s many public venues continue to grow, so, too, does the need for public safety officers.
To fill that need, more than 300 people packed a Donald E. Stephens (DES) Convention Center ballroom Tuesday, Oct. 4, to celebrate not only the graduation of more than 30 new Rosemont Public Safety Auxiliary officers, but to honor long-time officers and the promotion of two.
Rosemont Mayor Brad Stephens, Trustee Ralph DiMatteo, and Chicago Ald. Ed Burke joined Public Safety Chief Donald E. Stephens III and several families for the ceremonies, which began with a presentation of colors by the department’s Honor Guard.
Chief Stephens recognized and swore-in 36 new auxiliary officers who just completed a rigorous two-month training academy.
The academy took place on Saturdays and Sundays and was instructed by various members of the Rosemont Public Safety Department.
Auxiliary officers provide extra safety and security in many areas of the village. They work around the clock managing traffic, crowd control and security at all village venues. Officials note that after a year on the job as an auxiliary officer, one can take firearms training. If they pass the test, they are provided a gun.
Rosemont runs one of the largest auxiliary police forces in the nation, officials say. Public Safety’s support services bureau manages the training, equipping and scheduling of more than 200 auxiliary officers. In addition, the bureau manages over 100 security specialists (off-duty police officers from other cities and towns), who provide security services at Rosemont’s various venues and facilities as needed, such as larger events like Comic Con. These events draw hundreds of thousands of visitors to the village each year.
Rosemont’s officers have a good reputation throughout the area, one village official said, for being trained at all levels. He said they often get calls from communities with smaller police forces to help with their events, such as on July 4.
The ceremony also recognized retired Public Safety Captain John Spizzinoco for his “hard work and commitment to the village”. He worked in many capacities within the auxiliary division for 34 years, officials said.
Three officers were appointed to auxiliary lieutenant, seven appointed to sergeant, and 16 appointed to corporal. Also recognized were members who had served as an auxiliary officer for 20 or more years. In total, three members were recognized for 35 years of service, 11 for 30 years of service, 17 for 25 years of service, and 18 members for 20 years of service.
“We have a very experienced staff of auxiliary officers,” Chief Stephens said.
Friends and family of Acting Deputy Chief Greg Nazuka and Acting Commander John Hansen were asked to join the two at the front of the room by Chief Stephens just before they were officially promoted.
Nazuka was sworn-in as deputy chief of the bureau of support services and Hansen as commander of the bureau of patrol. Prior to taking the oath, both received their new department shields.