Richard (Rick) Vaccaro was born in Port Chester, New York, and was raised in Mamaroneck, New York. He is one of three sons.
After high school, Rick began working for Federal Express in New York. Rick's two brothers had moved to California, and when he was 23 years old, Rick transferred to the San Francisco station of Federal Express and joined his brothers here in California. Rick worked full-time and attended school at night. He obtained his Bachelor's Degree from Sacramento State University and his Master's Degree in Education from Chapman University. Rick also has a Teaching Credential and an Administrative Credential. After completing his education, Rick began teaching at-risk students in independent group studies for the Vacaville Unified School District.
Rick obtained a job as a court school teacher for the Solano County Office of Education. He went on to become a teacher at Fairfield High School, then an assistant principal at Armijo High School. Rick accepted a job as principal at H. Glenn Richardson Elementary School for one year. He returned to Armijo High School as principal, where he served for four years. For the past eight years, Rick has worked for the Solano County Office of Education as director of the Juvenile Court and Community Schools, which includes Golden Hills Community School, recently accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.
Rick served as chair of the Solano County Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Commission in the late 1990s. He served on the Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District's Discipline Committee in 2001. In 2001, Rick trained school administrators on how to deal with at-risk students. Rick also created and implemented a program for coaching, supporting, and mentoring struggling school administrators.
Following the death of friend and City Councilmember Matt Garcia, Rick was appointed to the Fairfield City Council in October of 2008. In November 2011, Rick was elected to the City Council and selected to serve as Vice-Mayor and served until November 2014, and again in 2016.
Rick has been married for 28 years. Rick and his wife raised two children, a son and a daughter.