Our program faculty are very knowledgeable and respected in their fields. The Bernstein Test Prep faculty and advisory board consists of professionals who combine practical public safety skills with many years of training experience, and have the academic background necessary to effectively train officers for the promotional process. Bernstein Test Prep is proud of their role as a leader and innovator in the field. The faculty brings with them strategies and methods which have proven to be highly effective in public safety test preparation.

Capt. Mike Bartuccio

Capt. Mike Bartuccio is a Senior Associate with Bernstein & Associates, Inc. He has a BA in Criminal Justice and served with the Winslow Township Police Department for 30 years. He has served in every area of law enforcement including patrol, detective bureau, and internal affairs, etc. He is a Certified Assessor and a State Certified Instructor in numerous areas of law enforcement. Capt. Bartuccio earned the highest score in the State on his Captain’s exam. Capt. Bartuccio has received a considerable number of awards and commendations during his police career. His teaching areas have included 2C, Case law, book reviews, In-Basket management, video assessment and Situational management. He is considered one of the top test preparation instructors in the country.

Chief Robert Dowd
Chief Robert Dowd served with the North Bergen Police Department from 1994 to 2020 when he retired in good standing as the Ninth Chief of Police in the Department’s 117-year history. Prior to joining our instructional staff, Robert Dowd was a Bernstein student having scored # 1 on his Chief, Captain, and Lieutenant exams. In 2013, he earned the top score in the State of New Jersey on the Police Chief’s Exam. Chief Dowd earned a Certified Public Manager (CPM) certification from Rutgers University and was designated as an Accredited Chief Executive – Chief of Police -Advanced (ACE-COP) by the New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police. He is also Board Certified in Security Management and designated as a Certified Protection Professional (CPP) from ASIS International.  Chief Dowd holds a Master of Science in Criminal Justice and a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice from New Jersey City University where he graduated Summa Cum Laude. Chief Dowd is a New Jersey Police Training Commission certified police academy instructor and  regularly teaches at the Hudson County Public Safety Training Center.  He has also been qualified as a subject matter expert where he has been called upon to help formulate test questions for promotional exams. Chief Dowd is a coauthor of  the tenth edition of Supervision of Police Personnel, the oft-cited “bible of police supervision” published by Pearson in 2024. Robert Dowd is a Past President of the Hudson County Police Chiefs Association, and is currently a retired member in good standing of the New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police (NJSACOP) and the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP). He also currently works as an Adjunct Professor of Criminal Justice at New Jersey City University. Chief Dowd provides instruction for Bernstein and Associates in all areas of study.
Capt. Robert L. Talalai
With over thirty years experience in Law Enforcement and more than 23 years of dedication as an Instructor for Bernstein & Associates, Capt. Talalai has an extensive amount of knowledge and understanding of Police Operations, Supervision, Management and Administration. He served as the Uniform Division Commander and Training Officer for the Carteret Police Department. His background includes Uniformed Patrol, Criminal Investigations, Major Case Management, Hostage Recovery, Narcotics K-9, Crime Prevention and Community Relations. During his tenure, Capt. Talalai received numerous commendations including the “Community Service Award” and was twice selected “Officer of the Year.” As a former Bernstein student, Capt. Talalai placed number one on his Lieutenants and Captains exams. He is Method of Instruction certified and his teaching areas have encompassed all phases of the New Jersey Police and Chicago Police Promotional Level exam programs, Public Safety Entry level programs, as well as the NJ State and NJ County Corrections Promotional programs. He also maintains a skilled understanding of Assessment Test Preparation and Law Enforcement Job Interview preparation. Capt. Talalai is considered one of the top instructors in the test preparation field. His presentations are thorough, dynamic and informative.
Deputy Chief Rich Verticelli
Deputy Chief Richard Verticelli served with the Camden County Department of Corrections, the Camden Police Department and the Camden County Metro Division starting in 1997. He retired in 2022 as the Executive in charge of Strategic Command which was composed of all Investigative and Uniformed personnel within the Metro Division. As a Bernstein student in 2014 he scored # 1 on the Police Captain’s exam and in 2017, he had the highest score statewide on the Deputy Chief’s exam. D/C Verticelli also was formerly the lead instructor for the Camden County Police Academy Street Survival School from 2002-2011, and the SWAT Team Commander for the Camden Police Department from 2008-2012. He provided Arrest, Search and Seizure instruction to all incoming members of the Camden County Police Department Metro Division and is a certified MOI instructor. He joined Bernstein & Associates in 2015 and his areas of expertise include the NJ Attorney General’s Guidelines, Criminal Code 2C, Case Law along with multiple Management & Supervision textbooks. He has prepared candidates for entry, supervisor, commander and executive rank exams in Police, Fire, Corrections and Sheriff’s both in NJ and in Chicago.
Chief Ralph Scianni
Chief Ralph Scianni has served with the City of Bayonne Police Department retiring with 34 years of service. Chief Scianni is a former Bernstein student having scored #1 on his upper level command exam excelling from Police Officer to Chief. Chief Scianni has earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Management & Organization from St. Peter’s University. He has also earned a Master’s Degree in Human Resource & Training Development from Seton Hall University attaining a 4.0GPA. He is a certified M.O.I. Instructor. Chief Scianni is also a graduate of the West Point Leadership & Command School which was coordinated by the New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police (NJSACOP). He is also a member in good standing with the New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police, the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), and the Hudson County Police Chiefs Association. He is also currently on staff as an Adjunct Professor of Criminal Justice at Excelsior College. Chief Scianni provides instruction for Bernstein and Associates in all areas of study with a specialty in the oral component of the testing process.
Lt. Herb Williams

Herb Williams retired as a lieutenant from the Woodbridge Township Police Department, where he served as a Patrol Sergeant, Assistant Commander of the Patrol Division, Manager of the Crime Analysis Unit, and Accreditation Officer. His teaching areas include Management and Supervision, the promotional exam legal review, and law enforcement entry exam prep. He has trained police officers, crime analysts and intelligence officers all around the US, and has been published in several law enforcement magazines and books. He often reminds the classes: “There is NO replacement for being NUMBER ONE.”

Director Andrew Ely
Andy Ely brings over 30 years of law enforcement experience to Bernstein & Associates. He has held sworn positions in municipal, county, state, and federal agencies and assignment in patrol, motorcycles, field training, inspectional services, chief of staff, and municipal police director. Andy is a certified NJ Police and Emergency Vehicle Operations Instructor and has served as an instructor at the Essex County Police Academy since 2004. He developed the Field Training Program and authored the Patrol Guide for the Essex County Sheriff’s Office and was that department’s Officer of the Year for 2003. A 28 year member of the US Coast Guard Reserve, he is a Chief Petty Officer and was twice involuntarily recalled to active duty. Serving in the Coast Guard’s Tactical Operations unit, he is a certified tactical operator. As Chief of Training and Development, he oversaw the training and re-certification of more than 75 federal law enforcement officers. Andy has been involved in the planning and response to numerous National Security Events, notable being Presidential visits and United Nations General Assemblies. Has received numerous police awards and commendations including Life Saving, two Exceptional Police Duty awards, the NJ Honor Legion for bravery, forty-three military decorations, and New Jersey’s Outstanding Military Reservist for 2004. His bachelor’s degree is from Seton Hall and he is currently completing a Master’s of Science in Management. He also holds certifications in various professional areas including Homeland Security. He is a member of numerous professional organizations, among them the National Association of Field Training Officers, the Airborne Law Enforcement Association, and the International Association of Chiefs of Police for whom he also consults. He is also an active consultant for the US Department of Justice.