RCMP Island leader, Oak Bay resident named new local deputy chief of police

Oak Bay police deputy starts May 15

Oak Bay resident Ray Bernoties takes on the role of deputy chief of Oak Bay Police Department next month.

Bernoties, a 25-year veteran with the RCMP, is currently chief superintendent and Island District Commander where he is responsible for the administration and operations of the 23 RCMP detachments on Vancouver Island.

“On behalf of the Oak Bay Police Board, we are pleased to welcome Ray to his new position as deputy chief,” said Mayor Nils Jensen, police board chair. “Ray’s well-earned reputation for service excellence and leadership will ensure that our residents continue to enjoy a safe and secure community. As a resident of Oak Bay with deep family ties, Ray understands and values our community and is keen to focus his attention on the wellbeing of all citizens.”

Bernoties replaces former Deputy Chief Kent Thom who retired at the end of February after serving in Oak Bay for 12 years – nearly a decade as deputy chief.

“We undertook a comprehensive search and received significant interest from some very impressive candidates,” said Oak Bay Police Chief Andy Brinton. “As deputy chief, Ray will bring to the position a diverse and valuable breadth of training, knowledge, expertise and experience. He has an inclusive leadership style and is well respected for his ability to work at the grass-roots level with the community. He is an excellent fit for our department, and for Oak Bay.”

Bernoties joined the RCMP in1992 and has enjoyed a career path that includes being chief of police for B.C.’s only First Nations Police Department, Officer in Charge responsible for the RCMP’s National Community Policing Programs including Child and Youth programs, Victim Services, Elder Abuse, Volunteers, and Auxiliaries; and as Officer in Charge of RCMP Communications in BC where he was responsible for all external and internal communications.

“It is a privilege to join the department in a leadership positon. I am excited to begin working with my new colleagues to build on the many strengths of the Oak Bay Police Department,” said Bernoties. “Oak Bay is my home. My parents live here. My children go to school here, and my wife and I are active community members. I am very proud to be Oak Bay’s Deputy Police Chief and look forward to serving and protecting our citizens.”

Bernoties starts May 15.

Bernoties is President of the BC Association of Chiefs of Police, and has served on several leadership committees including:

• BC Policing Structure and Funding Expert Committee;

• BC Association of Chiefs of Police ‘Ethics Committee’;

• Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police ‘Ethics Committee’;

• Island Health Leadership Committee;

• BC Association of Chiefs of Police ‘Responses to Mental Health Committee’;

• BC Police Services Division ‘Diversity Committee’; and

• CRD Area Chief’s working group. A recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal for ‘service to community’, Mr. Bernoties holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Western Ontario.

cvanreeuwyk@oakbaynews.com