Bob Delaney Speaker Profile
Bob Delaney Biography
Bob Delaney was born November 1, 1951 in Paterson, New Jersey and is a former police officer and is a professional basketball referee in the National Basketball Association (NBA) from 1987-88 NBA season to 2010-11 NBA season. Beginning the 2006-07 NBA season, Delaney has officiated in 1,182 regular season games, 120 playoff games, and seven NBA Finals games. In addition, Delaney was assigned to the 1998 NBA All-Star Game. He wears the uniform number 26.
Delaney is a 1973 graduate of New Jersey City University with a Bachelor of Science degree in criminology. He is a 2006 inductee into NJCU's Athletics Hall of Fame.
After finishing college, Delaney joined the New Jersey State Police. During the mid-1970s, Delaney worked as an undercover officer as part of an operation known as Project Alpha.
Project Alpha was an investigation into the New Jersey organized crime scene. Delaney and a group of undercover officers posed as businessmen in the trucking industry trying to get out from under the pressures of union interests. This would open an association with the crime families who would alleviate their business pressures from the unions for a price. Delaney would assume the identity of Bobby Covert, a deceased resident of New Jersey, for his protection. While doing all this, he had to maintain a profile as a reputable business owner and keep in mind his primary responsibility as a police officer. Mobsters nicknamed him Bobby Smash.
Project Alpha came to an end in 1977 when Delaney failed to check in with his commanding officers because he went on a business trip for his trucking company. In 1981, Delaney testified before a United States Senate committee on organized crime led by Senator Sam Nunn about his experiences with the most powerful organized crime syndicates in New Jersey during his three year undercover operation. Delaney testified that over 100 cases against the mobsters were opened in state and federal courts as a result of Project Alpha, and that the majority of those charged either ended up in prison, on the run, or dead. Soon after testifying in the Senate, Delaney retired as a law enforcement officer and devoted full-time to becoming a basketball referee. In 2008, Delaney wrote about his undercover experience in Covert: My Years Infiltrating the Mob, with co-author Dave Scheiber.
Delaney recently completed a Master of Arts degree in leadership from Saint Mary's College of California.
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