Jude Ciccolella was born on November 30, 1947 in Nassau County, New York, but grew up in Albany, New York. He began his academic life at the St. Catherine of Siena grammar school, and in 1961 transferred to the Christian Brothers Academy. While at the Christian Brothers Academy, Cicolella made captain of the basketball team, was hailed as the football's team most valuable player and was one of the baseball team's star players. Apart from his athletic prowess, Ciccolella also displayed great talent in drawing, writing and singing. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from Brown University.
Having been greatly interested in the film industry since he was a little boy, Cicolella eventually decided to pursue a career in acting. After he obtained his Master of Fine Arts degree in Theater from Temple University, Cicolella went on to perform in various plays and stage productions, and held different kinds of jobs, such as post office employee, teacher, dockworker, social worker, and cashier, among others. After some time, he relocated to New York and became a part of The Ensemble Studio Theater and The Actors Studio.
Since then, Cicolella has appeared in numerous productions, not just on stage, but on the big and small screens as well. His television credits include Law & Order, NYPD Blue, Every Body Hates Chris, ER, and The Adventures of Pete and Pete, while his film credits include The Shawshank Redemption, Boys on the Side, Night Falls on Manhattan, Star Trek: Nemesis, Down with Love, The Terminal, Daredevil, the remake of The Manchurian Candidate, Glengarry Glen Ross, Sin City and Premonition.
In 2001, he landed the recurring role of Chief of Staff Mike Novick in the television series, 24. The role gave him an opportunity to share two Screen Actors Guild Award nominations for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series with the rest of the 24 cast.
At present, Ciccolella is married to Sylva Kelegian, who he wed on December 20, 1997. The couple has four children.