Jacci Vigilante

My roots run deep in the township, both for my family and my business. I am the President and Founder of The Vigilante Law Firm, where I employ four lawyers in a plaintiff’s oriented litigation law firm with our law offices in Mullica Hill, New Jersey. I am a Certified Civil Trial Attorney and I concentrate my practice in the areas of employment and civil rights litigation in the federal and state courts in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. During my 17-year residency in Mullica Hill, my three sons, Christopher, Alexander, and Dan Ross succeeded in the Harrison Township and Clearview Regional School Districts. My husband of 25 years, Richard Ross, and I have been active members and strong supporters of the community including volunteering time as a CCD teacher and with Harrison Township Recreation.

I spent my formative years in the Philadelphia area assisting in running our small family business in the Italian market, attending Cabrini College and graduating from Temple’s School of Law in 1988. In 2000 , my husband and I chose Mullica Hill because of its great community and schools as the place to raise our sons. More than 15 years ago, I opened my Mullica Hill Office. I am a frequent speaker at professional legal seminars and have long been an advocate against the abuses of local government. I hope to serve the residents of Harrison Township to reset the course of local government and recreate the community that drew so many of us to the township.

Get to Know Jacci

So, Jacci, what’s your story?
Discuss a specific accomplishment you’ve achieved in a previous position that indicates you will thrive in this position.
Tell me how you would make Harrison Township better in your first 30 days.
Tell me about a project or accomplishment that you consider to be the most significant in your career.
Who is your role model, and why?
What was the toughest thing you ever had to do professionally and then personally?
So, Jacci, what’s your story?

I was born and raised in Philadelphia where I spent my teenage years working in our family business located on the Italian Market right across from Pat’s Steaks. My father and grandparents owned a number of businesses, including an Italian Imports business, a produce stand, a steak shop (yes there was another one beside Pat and Geno’s… it was Joe’s steaks). We were merchants in the best and most traditional form of the word. I learned a lot working on 9th Street. I learned how to deal with people from all walks of life and I learned the value of hard work.

I get my strong work ethic from my parents and grandparents, there was no slacking off, and the businesses rarely closed. I worked from before I was a teenager and continue with that same work ethic. I credit my parents for giving me responsibilities from that young age and for the expectation that I would fulfill them. I believe we do not to give this generation enough responsibility and we don’t expect enough from them. I attended 16 years of Catholic education including St. Leonard’s Academy for high school and Cabrini College, after which I graduated from Temple Law School in 1988.

While in college I met my husband who I have been with since 1984. We married in 1992 and have three wonderful sons, who make us proud every day. Our family name is Ross, and Christopher, and Alex, both graduated from Clearview and our son Dan is a senior this year. I was admitted to the Pa and NJ bars in 1988 and have practiced law continuously since 1988.

In 2000 I founded The Vigilante Law Firm, after practicing as a solo practitioner for a period of time. In 2004 I purchased the building at 99 North Main Street where I have continued to run my firm since. I am a litigator. In 2016 I was certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as Civil Trial Attorney, which is a designation held by only a small percentage of New Jersey lawyers, and even a smaller percentage of women lawyers. My practice focuses on providing representation to people who have been victimized by their employers.

I love what I do for a living. I am a firm believer that if you love what you do, you never work a day in your life. I am running for Committee at this point because when I see things that need to be fixed, I roll up my sleeves and jump in. Harrison needs to be fixed, we are spending money we don’t have on things we don’t need and it needs to stop.

Discuss a specific accomplishment you’ve achieved in a previous position that indicates you will thrive in this position.

In 1990 I was an associate at a medium sized law firm in Philadelphia. I was a member of the Young Lawyers Division of the Pennsylvania Bar Association. As a member of the association, I was eligible to run for a leadership position but I was discouraged by the firm I worked for from seeking the position, because they didn’t think we were “big enough” to win. We were not a firm that had offices in any city other than Philly and in a statewide election, that would be a disadvantage.

I ran anyway and won and served as the Young Lawyer Chair in a statewide organization with thousands of lawyers. I have served in leadership positions in almost every professional organization in which I have been a member. I have learned that you lead from behind, you set an example, you dig in, join and work hard and smart. A true leader is one that is concerned not only about her success, but about the success of all those around her.

Tell me how you would make Harrison Township better in your first 30 days.

In my first 30 days, I would make Harrison better by doing two specific things.

1. Implementing the state statute mandating a municipal ethics committee that would be independent of the committee.
2. Broadcasting Township meetings so that residents can attend by video to create transparency.

Tell me about a project or accomplishment that you consider to be the most significant in your career.

I am very lucky that I have a career where I have opportunities for victories and accomplishments on a regular basis. The most significant accomplishment that I have had professionally is the Certified Civil Trial designation I earned from the Supreme Court of New Jersey, because it is a recognition of the significant trial experience I have and my expertise in the field of civil law.

Who is your role model, and why?

My role model is my dad, who I lost last year. He was a hard worker who put his family first at all times. His loyalty was unassailable. He taught me so much. He was one of those rare people who made you believe that everything would be alright even when you knew it didn’t look that way. He was a go-to guy, who helped people without ever expecting anything in return. He is my role model.

What was the toughest thing you ever had to do professionally and then personally?

The toughest thing I ever had to do professionally was withdraw from a case. Sometimes, people can’t get out of their own way and refuse to follow professional advice. I like to believe I can help most people in most situations but sometimes, you need to know when you can’t and that was one of those times. Personally the hardest thing I ever had to do was be the healthcare power for my dying father, because I knew I had to follow his wishes, not mine. My wish would have been to keep him around forever.

Menu