The story behind this website begins in 2007 when, on an ordinary September morning, my world was unexpectedly smashed to pieces. A drugged-up gang banger with multiple arrests and outstanding warrants crossed my husband’s path, and as my husband and his partner attempted to arrest him, he pulled a gun and shot my husband twice in the back of the head.

The murder of a Phoenix police officer is big news. Bigger still is the fact that this happened at the hands of a previously deported illegal immigrant in a border state rife with contentious immigration battles.

As I listened to the politicians and pundits spin my husband’s death to further their interests, my journalism background came into focus and I found myself doing my own research into the causes and possible solutions to our nation’s immigration problems. I also gained an awareness of what it was like to be on the opposite side of the lens. I had been a member of the media, and now my family was the subject of the story.

When I went public with my views on immigration, I was drawn even further into the political web of Arizona politics, and though I shied away for a time, I felt I could no longer be silent.

And so I created this blog, my editorial on the challenges facing our state and our nation. My expectation is that it will be used as a source of reasoned debate to elevate our discussions in a thoughtful and informed manner while seeking solutions to complex problems. I hope the differing opinions expressed by myself and others will both challenge and motivate individuals to work for the greater good.



  1. Jameson Johnson

    Nick would be proud of the manner in which you have articulated sane policies in Arizona and national politics.

  2. Bryan Jeffries

    Thank you so much for articulating the truth about the history of how we arrived here and the true intentions of those who are villifying us. It was so incredibly offensive to hear Speaker Adams refer to himself as the “adult” in the pension conversation (House hearing on SB1609). We all want the system to be healthy and it will be. Kirk Adams is simply trying to further his political career on the backs of public safety officers. Again……Thanks for your voice.

  3. Glenn Haynes, M.S.Ed., LRM, HRM

    RE: Public pensions
    Your comments about public pensions completely misses a critical fact: Public pensions are completely unregulated! I possess over 20 years experience managing and negotiating employee benefit plans.
    Politicians and public sector union leaders are free to promise anything with no regard for responsible fiduciary behavior.
    ALL private pensions and all private sector benefit plans of any type are strictly regulated by the federal law known as ERISA. ERISA, enacted in the mid 1970’s by Congress specifically exempted all public sector benefit plans of any type!
    Had Congress regulated ALL plans, the problems in the public sector would not exist. Once politicians realized they could benefit by working with unions rather than representing the best interests of the taxpayers fiscal responsibility became non-existent!

    The only way to control rampant disregard for taxpayers is to regulate public benefit plans similar to ERISA.

  4. Jon Altmann

    Glenn, you must have missed something in Arizona State law – the pensions have boards overseeing them and they have a State Legislature riding herd over the whole deal. Why do we need more Federal control? Arizona’s public safety retirement system has long been held out as a model of conservative investment and is soundly financed, more so than one of the private sector pensions I am a beneficiary under that is under the Federal rules. I’ve seen my private sector pension from a major national corporation go down since I left that company – not even stay even. Also, military and Federal civil service pensions are not under the Federal laws. Not sure I agree that more Federal control is what Arizona needs.

  5. D. Stefanisin

    I received your most recent article, Heroes or Leeches, posted by the AZ Fraternal order of Police through a google alert I get from Councilman Sal iCiccio because I live in his District. I applaud your article wholeheartedly and could not have written anything better myself!

    My husband has been on the Phoenix Police Department for over 25 years. Many of his co-workers and friends, including firemmen, are very upset with the position that Councilman DiCicco has taken regarding pay and benefits. I would love to chat with you more about “city” issues.. Please send me an email if you have any interest in talking with me.

  6. Dana Marie Kennedy

    I saw you on Sunday Square off this morning and thought you did a great job and wanted to know more about you and your blog. I look forward to following and promoting your articles so more people can join in on this important conversation for reasonable solutions to difficult, complex issues.

  7. Alexis Priest-Santos

    I heard a story on NPR this morning and I was so proud of you! You articulated the real issues behind the immigration debate that was both thoughtful & insightful. It’s been a while since I knew you at KTVK and I’m truly amazed at your strength and courage. I will certainly be following your blog and hope that your efforts help bring about real reform.

  8. Elizabeth Montero

    I commend you on your stand against the dirty, wrongful acts and judgements of those we once trusted to lead our America! More than anything, I honor your courage demeanor to take on such a dirty task in the midst of your great loss. God bless you and your all


  9. Bruce

    It is great to see a rational and tempered approach to the bad things that happen to us all. This is kind of courage is both appreciated and respected.

  10. Sue Ellen Allen

    Your keynote address at the AZ Women’s Conference today was just the inspired kickoff we needed. You set the stage for the entire day with your authenticity and passion for your purpose. You are absolutely right. Finding the gift in the tragedy and using it to make a positive difference is the secret of life. Thank you of being true to yourself and for inspiring others to follow their own truth.

  11. Lisa Ruggeri

    Julie, you are such an inspiration. Although I did not know Nick personally and only met you once when I redacted your records. You and Nick have forever touched my life. I have lived in the law enforcement community for over 20 years, both as an employee and a spouse. I am so glad you are getting your voice out there so others can learn from you and hopefully make better choices.

    God Bless you and your kids, Julie. Keep it up, ignore the criticism and be heard! If you ever need anything please don’t hesitate to contact me.

    Lisa Ruggeri
    Retired Intelligence Analyst PPD now founder of Ruggeri Consulting and Training

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  12. Tanya Glover

    Hello! Thank you for being brave enough to speak out! This needs to happen with all of us. We need to let people in Arizona (and the rest of the world) know about things that are not fair or not considerate of other people. As for me, I will keep speaking out, e-mailing, and making my voice heard in support of public education. After all, these precious children are Arizona’s future!

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