‘Honoured to begin my role’: Oak Bay Police announce new chief constable


A police officer who made history when she became Greater Victoria’s first female deputy chief constable has just made history again after being promoted to Oak Bay’s top cop.

“It’s pretty humbling and I’m honoured,” said Julie Chanin, Oak Bay Police’s newly appointed chief.

Chanin is moving up in rank after outgoing chief constable Mark Fisher announced his retirement. She previously took the deputy role in April 2022, making her the first deputy chief in Oak Bay Police history.

At the time, Chanin told CHEK News it was “still sinking in,” adding, “I’m just so grateful for the opportunity.”

Now she’s shattering the glass ceiling of police chief, which has been unattainable for a woman in Oak Bay’s 118-year history.

“It’s fantastic it’s being celebrated but I look forward to that day where it’s commonplace,” Chanin told CHEK News. “I’m grateful for the previous leaders who were able to pave the way to allow this to happen.”

Though she has been with Oak Bay Police for 13 years, she has more than two decades of policing experience, having previously worked for the West Shore and Port McNeill RCMP detachments.

Now, she’s ready for the next chapter in her career.

“I am honoured to begin my role as Chief Constable and fortunate to have a dedicated team of police officers, staff and volunteers all committed to serving the community of Oak Bay,” said Chanin, adding that she looks forward to continuing the work of so many in making the district safer.

The Oak Bay Police Department has been around since 1906.

Police board chair Kevin Murdoch touches on trust, saying it’s “such an integral part of successful community policing, and DCC Chanin has earned the trust of the Board, the Department, and the broader community we serve.”

In a news release, Murdoch added that Chanin “has continuously demonstrated her technical knowledge, progressive leadership, and dedication to the community. Her passion and expertise in community policing is seen daily in her strong relationships with the residents and businesses in Oak Bay.”

The Solicitor General extended his congratulations to Chanin and outgoing Fisher, who has cited health issues as his reason for retirement.

“Her leadership and contributions have been invaluable to the community of Oak Bay, and I wish her well in her new role starting in June,” said Mike Farnworth in a statement.

“I would also like to extend my heartfelt gratitude and thanks to the outgoing Oak Bay police chief Mark Fisher…His legacy of professionalism and commitment to public safety in the community of Oak Bay will be remembered. Best wishes for the next chapter, Mark.”

Chanin’s first day in the role is June 1, while Fisher’s last day is May 31. Following his more than 33 years of policing experience, Fisher was promoted to chief constable in September 2022 after joining the department in 2011.

“While recent health challenges have caused me to reconsider priorities and retire earlier than planned, those challenges are manageable, and I look forward to a healthy retirement,” he added in a March 7 news release.

“I am very proud of our employees and the great work they do and will continue to do. It is a special community, and I feel very fortunate to have been given the opportunity to work here.”

Ethan MorneauEthan Morneau

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