800.474.5494 x 104
Rick has 30 years of law enforcement experience in local government. He retired as Police Captain for the City of Fairfield in 2011, where he was second in command in the Police Department. Throughout his career he has served in various leadership positions in patrol, personnel and training, investigations, and police support services. He was a Commander of the SWAT Team, Manager of the Field Training Officer program, Internal Affairs Investigations Commander, Firearms Instructor and ultimately the Firearms Program Coordinator. He served as a Detective and has extensive investigations experience.
He served as the construction liaison/program manager for the construction of the department’s 39,000 square foot training facility and indoor range. The facility is a regional range and training center housing a twenty position twenty-five yard pistol range, six position 100 yard rifle range, conference room, classroom, mat room/classroom, three driving simulators, use of force simulator, and armory.
After retirement, he obtained his Private Investigator’s License and Private Patrol Operators License and co-founded Blackrock Investigations and Consulting, which is now becoming The Blackrock Group with the addition of three new partners. He is also co-founder of Rwanda for Justice, a non-profit child advocacy organization working with police, prosecutors and medical staff in Rwanda, Africa to combat child sexual violence.
Rick has a Bachelors Degree in Human Resources Management. He is a member of the International Association of Computer Investigative Specialists (IACIS), Association of Workplace Investigators (AWI), High Technology Crime Investigation Association (HTCIA), California Association of Licensed Investigators (CALI), and ASIS International.
Richard L. Word
Vice President, Corporate Development
Rich Word began his law enforcement career in 1984 when he joined the Oakland Police Department. After rising through the ranks of Sergeant, Lieutenant, and Captain, Word was sworn in as Oakland’s Chief of Police in 1999. At 37, Chief Word was the youngest Chief in the Oakland Police Department’s history.
During Word’s tenure in Oakland, the Department graduated its first Youth Citizens Police Academy, which was comprised of youth from all of Oakland’s high schools. Additionally, Word reorganized department operations, giving lieutenants greater responsibility for geographic areas or police districts. These lieutenants essentially became “mini-chiefs.” This reorganization, coupled with a progressive Violence Reduction Plan, contributed to the City of Oakland lowering its overall violent crime rate in 2004 to its lowest level since 1970.
Beginning in November 2004, Word served as Chief of Police for the City of Vacaville. During Word’s tenure as Vacaville’s chief, the Department added to an existing array of impressive programs designed to reduce juvenile recidivism and calls for service. Despite significant funding and staff reductions, the Department adopted an entirely new policy manual, launched a Crime Free Multi-Housing program, a peer support program, and strengthened its outreach to the local community. Chief Word retired from the City of Vacaville in 2013.
In 2011, Word served as a Police Procedures Consultant for the City of Antioch. A team of Antioch police officers was sued for targeting Section 8 voucher holders; Word’s role was to evaluate the actions of the Antioch Police Department’s Community Action Team.
Also in 2011, Word began a new role as a member of the adjunct faculty for the University of Phoenix. In this capacity, Word teaches a number of courses in the University’s College of Criminal Justice and Security.
From May to August 2014, Word served as interim Police Chief for the City of Pinole, California.
Word was valedictorian of his class at the Oakland Police Academy. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from John F. Kennedy University, graduating cum laude, and he holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Golden Gate University. Word has also successfully completed the FBI National Academy and the FBI National Executive Institute.
Word served as President of the California Police Chiefs Association in 2007 and remains a member. Word continues to serve on the boards of directors of the Vacaville Social Services Corporation and Pace Solano. He has been married to his wife, Stacey, for the past 27 years. They have two children, Noah, age 25, who serves in the U.S. Army, and Taylor, age 22, a nursing student.
Vice President, Strategic Alliances
Al’s background includes operational, investigative, administrative and specialized experience. He retired from the City of Fairfield as a Police Lieutenant in April 2014 after 30 years of service. He has gained vast knowledge in specialized uniformed and non-uniformed assignments that include Patrol, SWAT, Special Operations, Crime Suppression, Investigations, Narcotics, Traffic (Motorcycle Sergeant), Training, Undercover Operations, K9, and Bicycle Patrol. He also has extensive experience with preparation of threat assessments, event security and administration, managing complex investigations and tactical operations.
Al has testified as an expert witness and/or been consulted as an expert in numerous criminal trials involving narcotic enforcement, search warrants, and use of force. He has also been consulted and retained as an expert witness by private attorney firms as well as municipalities involved in civil litigations.
He is a student of martial arts that melds perfectly in the area of use-of-force in police work. He has been an adjunct instructor for over 25 years at the Napa Valley College Police Academy and has expertise in the disciplines of weaponless defense, impact weapons, and firearms. Additionally, Al instructs semester classes for the Napa Valley College Administration of Justice Program, which includes: Introduction to Evidence, Criminal Procedures, Introduction to Police Investigations, and Introduction to Criminal Justice.
Al’s education includes a Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership and a Bachelor of Science in Management.
Director, Workers’ Compensation Unit
Rick’s military, law enforcement, and private investigations experience spans nearly 40 years, covers several executive positions, and is now being put to use leading The Blackrock Group’s Workers’ Compensation Investigations Unit. Rick served as the City of Dixon Police Chief from 1985 until 2001, then as Undersheriff for the Solano County Sheriff’s Office until his retirement in 2007. He was then hired as a full time Private Investigator and has since racked up thousands of hours investigating workers’ compensation injury claims and general liability claims for Status Investigations, Pegasus Risk Management, and Freese & Gianelli Claim Service.
Rick began his career by enlisting in the US Navy in 1967 where he served active duty as a Navy Hospital Corpsman and as a Field Medic in Vietnam with the 3rd Marines. After being Honorably Discharged, he became a correctional officer with the Fresno County Sheriff’s Department in 1973 and then hired on as a Police Officer with the City of Clovis in 1974. There he held the ranks of Specialist/Corporal, Detective, and Patrol Sergeant before promoting to Lieutenant/Operations Commander and Investigations Commander. He left the Clovis Police Department in 1985 to serve the City of Dixon as Police Chief for 16 years, then served as Solano County Undersheriff for 6 more, until 2007. He was elected to the Dixon City Council in 2008 and held the position until 2012. He was the city’s vice-mayor from 2008 to 2010.
Rick also had a brief career as a Professional Baseball player, signed out of high school as a Catcher with the Philadelphia Phillies Organization. He played on several minor league club teams before leaving the organization due to an injury.
He has a Bachelors Degree in Criminology from CSU Fresno and is a graduate of Class IX Command College with a POST Certificate in Leadership, which is acknowledged as the equivalent to a Masters Degree.