*Successful completion of all the steps outlined below under "POLICE HIRING PROCESS" is required for employment as a Police Officer with the Forest Preserve District of Cook County.
- Conducts high visibility pro-active police patrol on foot, bicycle, boat, snowmobile or vehicle to prevent crime, protect life, property and the district's natural resources, and maintains order through enforcement of local, state and federal laws.
- Acquires thorough knowledge of and familiarity with geographic area and boundaries owned or controlled by the district.
- Responds to emergency calls for service and provide direction and assistance during emergencies such as serious illness or injury, severe weather, fires, wildland fires, bomb threats, utility emergencies, disturbances, demonstrations, hazardous material incidents and natural resources related incidents.
- Conducts preliminary and follow-up criminal and crash scene investigations by, among other things, assuring the preservation, examination and collection of evidence at crime scenes; interviewing victims; questioning witnesses and apprehending and interrogating suspects.
- Ensures the safety and welfare of citizens by recognizing potential problems and hazardous conditions and taking appropriate action to prevent and resolve them.
- Utilizes available resources to ensure that information is provided to citizens, employees and staff concerning crime and safety issues. Ensures the enforcement of natural resources related ordinances including, but not limited to, checking fishermen for licenses, fish size and possession limits, poaching of reptiles, amphibians, deer and other animals and animal parts, insects and plants.
- Collaborates with Illinois Department of Natural Resources and local conservation police officers to protect the district's natural resources.
- Provides procedural recommendations and options to follow in the event of a crime.
- Prepares a variety of police reports, records, and other documents on an assigned shift in an accurate, required, and timely manner.
- Consistently performs at an acceptable level of productivity and produce work that is neat, well-organized, clear, concise, thorough, and departmentally sufficient. Reliably adheres to established work schedules as demonstrated through a positive employee attendance record.
- Relates to, and effectively works with, people of diverse cultural, economic and ethnic backgrounds.
- Serves as ambassador of the district by providing information, assistance and direction to citizens and users of District property and facilities.
- Represents the District at events including, but not limited to, special events hosted by the district or a partner organization, Law Enforcement Career Days and outdoor show expositions.
- Performs other duties as assigned.
- Must be at least 21 years of age at time of application and possess 60 credit hours from an accredited college or university OR possess a high school diploma or GED and three 3 or more years of work experience.
- Must possess a valid driver's license and a valid State of Illinois driver's license by date of hire.
- Must possess background free of convictions for any misdemeanor and/or felony referenced in 50 ILCS 705/6.1(a) as set forth in the District's Employment Plan.
- Possess an associates' degree or higher in Natural Resources, Law Enforcement or substantially similar areas from an accredited college or university; OR
- Prior work experience as a enforcement officer at a local, county, state or federal police agency, including military police; OR
- Active-duty status in the U.S. Armed Forces or Army National Guards and eligible for or awarded honorable discharge—you must attach proof to your application in order to be considered; OR
- At least 1 year of work experience in the areas of forestry, conservation, restoration, ecology or other related natural sciences; OR
- At least 1 season of work experience with the Forest Preserves of Cook County (FPCC) and left in good standing; OR
- At least 1 season of work experience as a Conservation Corp Crew member; OR
- At least 1 season of work experience on property of the FPCC with partners such as the Chicago Zoological Society, Chicago Botanic Garden, Greencorps Chicago; OR
- At least 1 season of work experience with other partners such as, Friends of the Forest Preserves or the Student Conservation Association
Knowledge, Skills, Abilities and Other Characteristics:
- Strong communication and organizational skills.
- Ability to prepare clear, concise and comprehensive written reports.
- Ability to understand and follow oral and written instructions.
- Ability to think clearly and decisively in stressful and challenging situations.
- Ability to promote the mission, programs, policies, and procedures of the Department through lawful operation and established standards.
- Ability to analyze situations and adopt quick, effective and reasonable courses of action.
- Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with and between employees, staff, the general public and other law enforcement organizations.
- Ability to adapt to changing field conditions including, but not limited to, exposure to extreme weather conditions, intense physical activity and safety hazards.
- Ability and skill to operate and maintain a variety of law enforcement and technical equipment including, but not limited to, police vehicles during normal and emergency conditions, and in a safe and cautious manner.
- Enthusiasm and passion for nature, conservation and outdoor activities.
- Ability to work with individuals both within the district and in the community from various backgrounds, cultures, areas of interest, etc.
- Ability to operate all required vehicles and equipment assigned and/or issued.
- Ability to run, jump, walk, squat, climb and crawl in all conditions, both indoor and outdoor.
- Ability to engage in physical combat to apprehend suspects and/or defend oneself and/or others in a physical altercation.
- Ability to remain alert for long periods of time and at all times while on duty.
- Sufficient manual dexterity and personal mobility which allows the employee to operate equipment in order to respond to and perform in emergency situations.
- Ability to safely handle and use a department approved firearm.
The duties listed are not set forth for purposes of limiting the assignment of work. They are not to be construed as a complete list of the many duties normally to be performed under a job title or those to be performed temporarily outside an employee's normal line of work.
Police Hiring Process:
Please be advised that the following additional steps in the hiring process are required:
*Depending on the number of qualified applicants, applicants may be randomly selected to proceed with the hiring process during any part of the hiring process.
- Eligible applicants will be required to attend an informational session where a written examination tutorial will be provided.
- Applicants will be required to email the Human Resources Department documentation confirming minimum qualifications, preferred qualifications (if applicable), and/or honorable Veteran's status prior to informational session.
- The National Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) study guide for the written examination will be made available to eligible applicants at the informational tutorial sessions. All candidates will be offered the same study guide.
- Applicants may be required to pay a $25.00 administrative fee in cash at the time of the informational session.
- The written examination will be administered by an independent testing agency.
- A cumulative minimum score of 70% on the written examination is required for a candidate to continue to be considered eligible.
- After passing the written exam, applicant shall provide a valid POWER Card to the District no later than four (4) weeks after being notified that they have passed the written examination. POWER Card must be issued by an agency or institution approved by the Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board.
- Applicants must successfully complete an oral interview.
- Applicants who are deemed eligible after the oral interview must successfully complete a background check, polygraph test, psychological examination, drug and medical test, POWER test.
- Applicants need an FOID card issued by the State of Illinois at the time of hire. While it is not necessary at the application phase, the district recommends that applicants apply for an FOID card as soon as possible.
- Recruits must successfully pass all examinations mandated by State Law to receive certification as a Peace Officer.
- Recruits must successfully complete academy training program, where applicable.
When applying for employment with the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, preference is given in the application process to honorably discharged Veterans who have served in the Armed Forces of the United States for more than 180 consecutive days or during War Time.
To take advantage of this preference, a Veteran must:
- Meet the minimum qualifications for the position.
- Identify themselves as a Veteran on their employment application by answering Yes to the question "Are you a military veteran?"
- Attach a copy of their DD 214, DD 215, or NGB 22 (Notice of Separation) at the time of application by uploading it as part of your application. If there are multiple DD 214s, DD 215s, or NGB 22s, please submit the one with the latest date. Coast Guard must submit a certified copy of the military separation from either the Department of Transportation (before 911) or the Department of Homeland Security (after 911).
- Veteran must provide original applicable discharge papers at time of interview.
General District Employment Requirements:
- PROOF OF EDUCATION, CERTIFICATIONS AND LICENSES WILL BE REQUIRED.
- MUST BE A RESIDENT OF COOK COUNTY OR ESTABLISH RESIDENCY IN COOK COUNTY WITHIN 6 MONTHS OF EMPLOYMENT AND REMAIN A RESIDENT AT ALL TIMES DURING EMPLOYMENT WITH THE DISTRICT.
- MUST BE FULLY VACCINATED AT THE TIME OF HIRE OR SUBMIT A REQUEST FOR A REASONABLE ACCOMMODATION WITHIN 1 WEEK OF START DATE.
The Forest Preserve District of Cook County is an equal opportunity employer and ensures against discrimination in employment on the basis of a person's race, color, sex, age, religion, disability, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, military discharge status, source of income, housing status, or gender identity. We value our employees and the different talents, expertise, and viewpoints that each brings to the table. We believe a robust exchange of ideas results in better decision-making and we commit to providing a constructive, safe, and positive work atmosphere that promotes mutual respect and empowers individuals to thrive in their jobs.