Nicholas Scoppetta, a former FDNY commissioner who also held several other high-profile public positions, has died at age 83 after battling cancer.
Scoppetta, born on the Lower East Side, spent a portion of his childhood in the city’s foster care system before serving in the Army and graduating from Brooklyn Law School, NY1 reported.
He first worked as a prosecutor for Manhattan District Attorney Frank Hogan and as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, according to the New York Daily News, before his various city-level positions, which spanned the administrations of four mayors: John Lindsay, Abe Beame, Rudy Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg.
Throughout his service to New York, Scoppetta served as commissioner of investigation, deputy mayor for criminal justice, head of New York City’s Child Welfare Administration and as the city’s 31stfire commissioner, a position he held until 2010, NY1 stated.
“New Yorkers will be forever grateful for his leadership as fire commissioner following 9/11, when he led the FDNY through its darkest days,” Mayor de Blasio said in a statement.
He may be most remembered for being a part of the Knapp Commission’s investigation into alleged police corruption, later popularized in the book and movie “Prince of the City,” according to NY1.
“His greatest skill was connecting with people, being very practical and being pragmatic,” Scoppetta’s son was quoted by the Daily News. “He was a law-and-order guy, and he had a strong sense of right and wrong.”