Pete Kalenik is a Patrolman and Field Training Officer in the Chicago Police Department. Throughout his career, he has protected families in one of Chicago's toughest neighborhoods. As a result, he has served at the forefront of Chicago's fight against gun violence and worked tirelessly to combat America's opioid epidemic.
Before embarking on a career in law enforcement, Pete volunteered as an AmeriCorps educator, teaching on Chicago’s Southside, at Visitation Catholic School. Additionally, Pete worked as a nonprofit professional, raising millions of dollars for community development programs, including support for advanced teacher training, after school activities, and Chicago's Safe Passage initiative.
Chicago Police Department
As a Patrolman, Pete was responsible for safeguarding the city's Little Village and North Lawndale communities. As a Field Training Officer, he taught and mentored less-experienced officers in Chicago's "most violent" police beat. He was named the Most Outstanding Recruit at the Chicago Police Academy. His work has been recognized for addressing crime surrounding vacant housing. At the same time, Pete served as a liaison to Chicago's largest community-policing program involving youth and sports.
Currently, Pete is the senior member of a district-level Mission Team. He also contributes to the city's Crisis Intervention Team, which helps citizens who experience mental health emergencies.
Illinois Army National Guard
After being named the Best Soldier at Basic Combat Training, Pete was assigned as a paratrooper at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. While working in the Army's Chaplain Corps, he was awarded the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal. After transitioning to the Army Reserve, Pete served as a Non-Commissioned Officer in the 308th Civil Affairs Brigade. Today, Pete is a Captain and Battalion Staff Officer in the 178th Infantry Regiment.
As a graduate of Chicago Public Schools, Pete understands the importance of educating our young people. This understanding motivated him to become an AmeriCorps educator with the Inner-City Teaching Corps. As a middle school instructor, Pete dedicated himself to creating an inquiry-based science curriculum at Visitation Catholic School. He also served as a youth football coach at the Chicago Park District's O'Hallaren Park and volunteered as an assistant basketball coach at The Faith Community of St. Sabina.
He would later work on behalf of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation. In this capacity, he was an Education Organizer for the North River Commission and raised millions of dollars to support teacher training and after school activities. He also coordinated the campaigns for dozens of neighbors to serve as Local School Council representatives.
University of Illinois at Chicago
Master in Urban Planning and Policy