MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ — Borough Council added to Mountainside’s growing roster of law enforcement as police Officer Brendan Carlos was appointed to his new position at the meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 17. Originally from Berkeley Heights, Carlos graduated from Governor Livingston High School and Union County College, and has been a Union County sheriff’s officer for the past four years.
Carlos said his inspiration to become a police officer stemmed from his involvement in the New Jersey National Guard.
“My family moved to Berkeley Heights when I was 6 years old, and I consider that as my hometown,” Carlos said on Friday, Aug. 20. “It was a great place to grow up, and I still have family and friends there. Being a police officer is similar to my service in the New Jersey National Guard, where I serve the citizens of New Jersey in a different capacity. I like the connection with people, the ability to help and contribute and being part of a team.
“As a (National) Guardsman, I helped after Hurricane Sandy, during COVID and was ready to respond to other disasters if needed. I enjoyed giving back to the community and knowing I was a part of something.”
Carlos said becoming a police officer was a process that took many steps to achieve and many obstacles to overcome, especially with so many qualified candidates applying for what might be only one opening.
“I just kept working toward my goal, since I was certain this is what I wanted in life,” he said. “It was tough, but I feel as though my hard work and sticking to my goal in life has paid off.
“We work basically around the clock in patrol, on a 12-hour shift that rotates,” continued Carlos. “I expect to miss a lot of social events and will have to sleep during the day, but my wife and I expected that hardship all along. Being deployed in the military twice for a year, my wife learned how to adapt and make the best of it. This will be easier in some ways, but I still expect to miss a lot.”
Carlos said he was ready to face whatever challenges his new position threw his way, adding that he believes he has what he feels are the most important qualities for the job.
“I think being honest at all times and always trying to do the right thing helps create trust,” he said, adding he was looking forward to being able to help others and know that, at the end of his career, it would be time well spent.
“(Carlos) comes to us after serving four years as a Union County sheriff’s officer and nearly 10 years of service to the New Jersey National Guard, where he holds the third-highest enlisted rank,” said police Chief Joseph Giannuzzi at the council meeting on Tuesday, August. 17. “We’re certain, of all the background that he brings with him and the leadership training, his experience in life is going to do good things here for us, and we’re happy to have him.”