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Province of British Columbia
For Immediate Release
Sept. 14, 2017
Ministry of Attorney General
New leadership at B.C.’s Independent Investigations Office

VICTORIA – Attorney General David Eby announced today that Ron MacDonald has been appointed as the new chief civilian director (CCD) at B.C.’s Independent Investigations Office (IIO).

MacDonald comes to B.C. from Nova Scotia where he held a similar role as director of the Serious Incident Response Team (SIRT). He has been a lawyer for more than 30 years and spent much of his career working within the criminal justice system as both a Crown attorney and defence counsel.

“I want to congratulate Ron MacDonald on his appointment, and I know the IIO will be in good hands with his leadership and significant experience,” said Eby. “The B.C. government strongly supports the oversight role of the IIO in building confidence in police accountability throughout the province. I extend my thanks to acting chief civilian director Bert Phipps, who has done an excellent job serving the office over the last 12 months.”

“Police oversight is a fundamental pillar in a democratic society,” said MacDonald. “British Columbia is one of the leading provinces in its commitment to oversight of police and this is a great opportunity for me to provide the leadership and build on the great work that has already been done in this regard.”

This week, the IIO marks its fifth anniversary in operation, carrying out the mandate of conducting thorough and competent investigations of police-involved incidents resulting in death or serious harm.

“British Columbians have trust in police and their commitment to protecting our communities,” said Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth. “The work of the IIO is critical to maintaining that public trust and police accountability through civilian oversight.”

The IIO is under the command and direction of the CCD – a role that is filled by a person who cannot have ever served as a police officer.

In addition to his years as a practising lawyer, MacDonald was a criminal law policy advisor at the Nova Scotia Department of Justice prior to his appointment as director of SIRT, past president of the Nova Scotia Barrister Society and past president of the Federation of Law Societies of Canada. In 2007, he was awarded the National Heads of Prosecutions Humanitarian Award. MacDonald was also a volunteer coach in softball, and high school and university basketball, and worked at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

MacDonald will be assuming the role as of Oct. 24, 2017.

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