BRIDGETOWN, N.S. - Annapolis District RCMP has a new commander who’s happy to be back in Nova Scotia, returning to his roots in community policing after a 31-year career that took him to Ontario and Germany and lots of places in between.
Staff-Sgt. Ed Hubbard arrived in Annapolis County at the beginning of September, replacing Staff-Sgt. Dan MacGillivray who was transferred to a new role in New Minas.
Hubbard was born in England and moved to Cumberland County in 1969. He joined the RCMP in 1987 and has held a number of diverse roles within the force beginning in Mississauga as a general duty constable. Since then, he has worked both domestically and abroad over the last three decades.
As district commander, Hubbard is in charge of RCMP in the Town of Middleton and in Annapolis County. Annapolis Royal has its own municipal police department.
While Hubbard is still getting his feet wet in Annapolis County, he noted in a recent interview it’s a busy district with several unique positions such as Seniors Safety Program coordinator and a community program officer.
“These are very much integrated community positions where we’re dealing with much more than just response or re-active policing,” he said. “It’s very much pro-active and identifying issues prior to them becoming a real policing issue -- the sort of stereotypical re-active policing issue.”
Those civilian positions focus on prevention and education.
Along with that Annapolis District has an officer integrated with the schools, and while that’s not a new concept it’s an area where resources have been dedicated.
“I’m really impressed by what we have here at the present and I’m looking to learn how that actually works,” he said.
In other areas of policing, Hubbard is catching up on what’s happening in Annapolis District.
“From what I’m seeing right now we seem to be managing quite adequately,” he said, based on his limited observation of a few weeks.
Besides the contingent of officers dedicated to Annapolis County and Middleton, Hubbard said he can draw on the resources based at RCMP headquarters in Halifax.
“The RCMP is not just a set number that we have dedicated to the district,” he said. “If we require police dog services we have those assets available from outside that would come in. We have Major Crime which would come in and do files.”
All told they can bring in their own experts in commercial crime, explosives, technology, diving, and numerous other services such as ERT.
“We can ask headquarters for resources out of (Major Crime) to look at our file and maybe advise us on where we should be going with that, and/or they would take it over,” he said. “Identification services, all these sort of assets that we can draw upon when needed. Emergency Response Team is a big thing of which I was a member for 10 years, so I have some knowledge of the workings of that and the occasions when they would be required.”
In Canada Hubbard has worked as a detachment supervisor, drug investigator, and led the Nova Scotia RCMP Internet Child Exploitation Unit. He’s been posted in Bible Hill, Cole Harbour, and Halifax.
Internationally, he participated in two United Nations missions: investigating war crimes in Kosovo, and managing three international teams who provided advice to the Afghanistan National Police.
For the past four years, Staff-Sgt. Hubbard was posted in Berlin, Germany, as the RCMP liaison officer, where he served as the link between law enforcement agencies in Canada and six European countries.
Hubbard is glad to return to his roots in community policing.
"I look forward to working with all of our partners, including service providers, town councils, and police advisory boards to identify challenges and ways we can continue to keep our communities safe," he said.
"My wife Lisa and I feel very fortunate to be back in our home province of Nova Scotia and I'm privileged to be working with such a dedicated and motivated staff in beautiful Annapolis County."