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"Serving with Pride"


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Cadet News

Palos Park Police Department Police Cadet Scholarship Program Make 2010 Award
Nov. 15, 2010
The Palos Park Police Department believes in promoting the policing profession as a lifelong career. A formal education is necessary to be successful in the future police profession.

Each year the Palos Park Police Department, Palos Park Police Cadet program and the Palos Park Police Department Citizen on Patrol Service COPS join forces to assist members of the cadet program with their college tuition.

The Palos Park Police Department will provide individual cadets with scholarship funding for tuition and expenses while they attend a local a community college.

This year’s recipient is Cadet Sergeant Jeremy Maske of Palos Hills. Jeremy is currently a senior at Stagg High school, but finishing his second semester as a Criminal Justice student at Moraine Valley Community College.

Mayor John Mahoney and Officer John Murray will make the presentation at the September 27, 2010 Palos Park Village Council Meeting.

Palos Park Police Cadets help the Palos Park Library in their Food for Fines program
This holiday season, the Palos Park Police Cadets will be working in partnership with the Palos Park Library in their Food for Fines program "Food for fines" allows you to donate to the library, which will turn the cans over to a local food bank. The Palos Park Police Department agrees with our partners at the Palos Park Library, this is a great opportunity for patrons to give back to the community and get their Library record back in good standing. Palos Park Library patrons are encouraged to bring undamaged and unexpired boxed or canned non-perishable food items to the Palos Park Library or the Palos Park Police Department. Canned items can include canned meat, peanut butter, canned fruit, canned vegetables, and boxed meals.

Area Foundation Donates Vehicle to Cadet Program

Palos Park, IL April 12, 2010- The Cord Vanderpool Foundation has donated a 2003 Crown Victoria to the specific use of the Palos Park Police Cadet Program.
The Cord Vanderpool Foundation is based out of Orland Park, IL and is led by President and CEO Gary Bertacchi. Gary’s son, Mark, is involved in the Palos Park Cadet program and has played an instrumental role in developing the program along with the Cadet Commander Frank Slabenak.

The Cord Vanderpool Foundation was originally established in 2005 and has been helping improve the lives of individuals throughout the greater Chicagoland area and also throughout the world. The Cord Vanderpool Foundation has been involved in numerous charitable functions and projects including their most recent endeavor to bring the games of baseball and softball to the children of Migori, Kenya.

The Cord Vanderpool Foundation hopes that their charitable efforts inspire others to pay it forward and encourage others to leave the world better than they found it.

“The Cord Vanderpool Foundation is proud to support the young men and women cadets that selflessly donate their time to assist the fine officers of the Palos Park Police Department and the residents and motorists of Palos Park. We commend the cadet's community service.” Gary Bertacchi-President & CEO of Cord Vanderpool Foundation

The Palos Park Police Department Cadet Program is very grateful to have been able to work with the Cord Vanderpool Foundation and benefit from their generosity. If you are interested in reading more about the Cord Vanderpool Foundation visit:

Palos Park Police Cadets Receive Cook County Sheriffs Youth Service Medal of Honor
Palos Park Police Commissioner Dan Polk has announced that on November 16th, Palos Park Police Cadet Sergeant Bill Delaney and Palos Park Police Cadet Tony Delaney received the Cook County Sheriff’s Youth Service Medal of Honor. This is an award for High School aged teens that have completed more that 100 hours of volunteer community service.

The Palos Park Police Cadets perform a wide range of duties on a volunteer basis. Some of these duties include traffic control, there annual holiday food driver, etc… This will be the 9th consecutive year that member of the Palos Park Police Cadet program have received this award.

The Palos Park Police cadets would also like to remind everyone that they are currently accepting donations for both their annual Holiday Food Drive and their partnership with the Ronald McDonald House.



Palos Park police commissioner Dan Polk has announced that the Palos Park Police Cadets will again expand their service to the community during summer evenings.   

This summer will be the eighth summer that the Palos Park cadets will assist children and adults alike cross the busy intersection of 123rd St. at 86th Ave.  

As we experience the onset of warmer weather, summer evenings in Palos Park include large numbers of visitors coming into the community for some world famous ice cream from the plush horse located at 123rd and 86th Ave. 

Police Chief Joe Miller said, “We get guests of all ages and from all over coming into Palos Park on summer nights and we felt this would be an opportunity to ensure the safety of pedestrians in the area by having a police presence.  This also gives the cadets a chance to showcase their program to people from all over Chicago land.” 


Veteran Palos Park Police Cadet to Join United States Navy
Palos Park Police Commissioner Dan Polk is proud to announce that Cadet Sergeant Veronica Hojek has joined the United States Navy and will be leaving the cadet program in late February. Veronica joined the Palos Park Police Cadet program in 2006. Since that time, she has risen to the rank of cadet sergeant for her leadership skills. During her time with the Palos Park Police Cadet program she has dedicated more than 2,000 hours of community service to the Palos Park Police Cadet program. These hours include traffic control, special village events, senior well being checks and in addition to this, she has shown superior dedication and ingenuity.

Veronica has participated in a number of emergency call outs. One would include assisting Richmond Park Police Department when severe winds and a tornado damaged an apartment complex and left hundreds of people homeless. She also contributed recently when a tree completely blocked McCarthy Road. In addition to helping to reroute motorist around the area, she also help to make sure that the residents left without power had had no major problems.

Throughout her time with the program, she has shown the ability to lead her fellow cadets. On numerous occasions, she was put in command of a detail and the results were always a success.

On behalf of the men and women of the Palos Park Police Department, we would like to thank Veronica for her years of dedicated service

Veronica will be recognized by Mayor Mahoney and Police Commissioner Dan Polk at the February 23rd Palos Park Village Council Meeting.

dated Feb. 2008

Palos Park Police Commissioner Dan Polk has announced that Palos Park Police Department Cadet Sergeant Mervet Akroush of Orland Park will be the first cadet to receive a cadet scholarship. Mervet has been an active member of the cadet program for about four years. 

About the Cadet Program

The Palos Park Police Cadet Program was created by Chief Joe Miller in 1999 under Police Commissioner Carolyn Baca. The purpose was to involve teenagers in the police department and to let them observe the workings of a law enforcement agency. As time went on, and as the number of members grew, the cadet program’s duties have also grown.

Today, in addition to observing the police department, they now provide traffic control at major village events and participate in a “Ride-a-Long” program. They also assist people crossing the intersection of 123rd Street and 86th Avenue in front of the Plush Horse iced cream parlor during the busy summer months. In addition to this, they perform elderly checks as part of the police departments “You Are Not Alone” program for seniors during inclement weather.   

Anyone 16-21 years of age can apply to be a cadet or inquire about the cadet program by picking up an application at the Palos Park Police Department located at 8999 W. 123rd Street or by calling (708)671-3770.

Scholarship Fund
The cadet scholarship program was started a few years ago by the Palos Park Police Department Citizens on Patrol Service (C.O.P.S.) under Mayor John Mahoney, former police commissioner. Since that time, the C.O.P.S. has accrued over eight hundred dollars toward the scholarship, mostly at the annual “Taste of Palos” where they sell corn. The Scholarship fund is for current Palos Park Police Department Cadets, who are pursuing a degree in criminal justice. Click here to donate.

Police Cadet Program Coordinators
Officers John Murray & Pat Maier
Commander Ross Chibe
Lt. Marvet Akroush
Sgt. Veronica Hojek

What is the Palos Park Police Explorer Cadet Program?
The goal of the Police Explorer Cadet Program is to teach young adults the values needed to succeed in a law enforcement career and in life.
  • Self-Discipline
  • Self-Confidence
  • Self-Respect
  • Teamwork and the desire to help others

The Palos Park Police Department Explorer Cadet Program is designed to introduce young men and women in 14 to 20 years of age interested in pursuing a career in law enforcement.

The program is designed to provide law enforcement training and experience to the Explorer Cadet through mentoring, classroom instruction, and hands-on training.

Some of their training Includes:

Palos Park Police Department Rules and Regulations
Police history
Ethics & Moral Issues
IL Criminal Justice System
IL Crime Code
IL Motor Vehicle Code
Search & Seizure
Use of Force
Firearms safety
Report Writing & Note taking
CPR & First Aid
Patrol Procedures
Crowd & Traffic Control
Crime Scene Search
Field searches
Accident Investigations
Water Rescue Training

11 years and counting
Palos Park Police Department Cadets have gone on to serve:

Police Departments:
Mokena X2
Tinely Park
Palos Heights
Downers Grove
United States Secret Service
Orland Park
Cook County Sheriff
Orland Hills
Chicago Ridge EMA
Evergreen Park
Chicago Ridge
Chicago P.D.
Las Vegas P.D.
Missouri State Patrol
LaGrange Park
NYC Fire Dept

Several are paramedic/ EMT's

Two teachers
Many in private sector security
One lawyer
One pharmacist



8999 West 123rd Street
Palos Park, IL 60464

POLICE BUSINESS (708)448-0639 or (708)671-3770
9:00 AM to 8:00 PM, Monday
9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Tuesday-Friday



"Serving With Pride"

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