Carson steps into top campus police post
By Paul Mayne
April 24, 2013
For John Carson, it was, quite frankly, an easy decision to make.
Serving as Campus Community Police Services’ (CCPS) safe campus coordinator, since 2011, Carson has been named CCPS director, effective May 1, replacing Elgin Austen, who served as CCPS director since 2003.
“I’m certainly looking forward to it,” Carson said. “I’ve enjoyed my two years so far and appreciate everything Western is all about and the teamwork that goes on.”
In 1978, Carson’s policing career began with the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) with the Manotick Detachment, where he performed a variety of front-line policing functions. From 1993-2008, he served as inspector for the London District Headquarters to OPP Deputy Commissioner for Ontario. He has received significant awards and honours including Officer of the Order of Merit from the Governor General of Canada, Queen’s Jubilee Medal and Canadian Police Exemplary Service Medal.
Carson said there are a lot of new things happening down the road, such as the new student residence going up on Sarnia Road, and the changes that will create. He also cannot wait to have a stronger presence on campus.
“The continuing diversity on campus also presents some challenges, so I see that I have some work to do with all my colleagues across campus as to how we meet everyone’s needs and make sure the campus is safe for everybody,” he said.
Gitta Kulczycki, vice-president resources and operations, said Carson brings more than 30 years of experience to the role; experience that includes all aspects of day-to-day policing, executive management, incident command, multi-agency projects and strategic planning.
“He has developed a deep appreciation for the diverse issues that impact students, faculty and staff as well as what is required to provide a safe and productive learning environment,” she said.
Carson added the assistance of Austen in his transition to the new role has been invaluable.
“I have a lot of respect for Elgin. He and I go back a lot of years, when we were officers in the public police services, him at London Police and me at OPP (London detachment). We had a strong working relationship and I had great respect for him and he was the primary reason that I found myself here at Western,” Carson said. “If it wasn’t for his leadership, I wouldn’t be here and I’ve certainly learned a lot from him. He leaves the place in very good stead. The bar has been set.”
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