James Pickett

Deputy Chief/Support Services, Evanston Police Department

James Pickett, Deputy Chief of the Evanston Police Department, loved his first job.

Originally from the south side of Chicago, Pickett held his first job when he was 16. He worked as a computer program tutor for a summer program at Malcolm X College.

"Instructors would teach us computer programs," explains Pickett, "and, in turn, we would teach grade school kids involved in the summer program what we had learned."

Pickett loved getting paid every week, but says that the new responsibility also made him feel good about himself.

Although his first job was in a different field than his current career, Pickett says his tutoring job taught him valuable skills that helped make his career possible.

"I had to learn to take instruction from supervisors," says Pickett. "I learned accountability. I learned how to report to someone. I learned responsibility."

While Pickett didn't end up pursuing a career related to his first job, he's a perfect example of the valuable skills that can be gained from any work experience.

"My first job taught me to deal with people from all walks of life," says Pickett of a skill that has served him well as a police officer.