Const. Ian MacDonald is retiring from the Abbotsford Police Department after 22 years. (Abbotsford News file photo)

Const. Ian MacDonald is retiring from the Abbotsford Police Department after 22 years. (Abbotsford News file photo)

Abbotsford Police former media officer retires from force after 22 years

Const. Ian MacDonald spent eight years as public information officer

The man who served as the face of the Abbotsford Police for eight years retires this week after almost 22 years with the department.

Const. Ian MacDonald is spending his last day on Friday with a task that he has done many times over the years – speaking to a class of journalism students at the B.C. Institute of Technology.

MacDonald was the Abbotsford Police Department’s public information officer (PIO) from 2009 until the end of 2017.

His role often put him in the spotlight, as he relayed information to the public – through the media – about events that ranged from the tragic to the comical.

He said there is one thing he will miss most about his job.

“I’ve always liked dealing with and working with people. Twenty-five years ago, when I was working in HR as director of administration for a restaurant and food service company, a VP started my performance review by stating, ‘Ian, you like people. We don’t,’ ” MacDonald laughs.

He said he is now looking forward to spending more time with his family, scuba diving and travelling – “maybe write a book on a beach somewhere.”

MacDonald went into policing in 1997 at the age of 31 after an eight-year stint in the restaurant industry.

MacDonald was hired by the APD in 1997, completed his training, and then worked in patrol, followed by a period as a trainer for a new records management system known as PRIME.

RELATED: Const. Ian MacDonald reflects on eight years as media officer for Abbotsford Police

RELATED: Touched by an angel: Abbotsford police program connects with drug users

Then-PIO Sgt. Casey Vinet began pestering MacDonald to apply for the PIO position when Vinet’s stint neared its end, but MacDonald initially had no interest – that is, until he was told that then Chief Bob Rich wanted him to do it.

MacDonald had great respect for his boss, and that’s all he needed to hear. But he wasn’t sure he was the right person for the job.

“I candidly said, ‘Listen, I have no training. I tend to talk. Public speaking isn’t an issue, but public shutting up is an issue for me,’ ” he said.

Since moving on from the PIO position, MacDonald has been instrumental in the development of the APD’s mentoring program, which currently has 25 volunteer mentors and 26 at-risk youth.

He has also been a key player in the Project Angel program in response to the opioid crisis. The program helps connect people to treatment and recovery, including through connections with those who have been through it.

MacDonald was also involved in a research project at University of the Fraser Valley that looked at the Abbotsford gang situation, including the paths that lead people to becoming involved.

Report an error or send us your tips, photos and video.

Vikki Hopes | Reporter

@VikkiHopes

Send Vikki an email.
Like the Abbotsford News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

An apartment building and townhouse project has been proposed at 2236 McCallum Rd. in Abbotsford. The development was given third reading by city council on June 14. (City of Abbotsford)
Apartment-and-townhouse project planned on McCallum Road in Abbotsford

Development across from old hospital site consists of 174 suites and 10 townhouses

Adam Hobbs went missing from a Langley work site on Monday, June 14 and may have gone to Vancouver. (Special to the Langley Advance Times)
Family, RCMP seek Abbotsford man missing from Langley job site

Adam Hobbs lives in Abbotsford and is a minor hockey referee

Police were on scene Monday afternoon (June 14) in the area of George Ferguson Way and Ware Street. (John Morrow/Abbotsford News)
Police called out after reports of possible home invasion in Abbotsford

Incident on Monday afternoon at George Ferugson Way and Ware Street

Migrating sockeye in the Fraser River August 7, 2007. (Fisheries and Oceans Canada)
First Nations, commercial, and recreational harvesters join forces to save Fraser River fish

‘We have to work together to rebuild these stocks while there is still time,’ says delegate

The Vancouver Canucks have polled season ticket holders on team name options for the new Abbotsford AHL team.
Vancouver Canucks poll season tickets holders on Abbotsford AHL team name

List asks fans to rank three out of 10 options, also if Abbotsford or Fraser Valley should be used

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

(Black Press Media file)
Dirty money: Canadian currency the most germ-filled in the world, survey suggests

Canadian plastic currency was found to contain 209 bacterial cultures

(pixabay file shot)
B.C. ombudsperson labels youth confinement in jail ‘unsafe,’ calls for changes

Review states a maximum of 22 hours for youth, aged 12 from to 17, to be placed in solitary

Eleonore Alamillo-Laberge, 6, reads a book in Ottawa on Monday, June 12, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Parents will need to fight ‘COVID learning slump’ over summer: B.C. literacy experts

Parents who play an active role in educating their children this summer can reverse the slump by nearly 80%, says Janet Mort

The border crossing on Highway 11 in Abbotsford heading south (file)
Western premiers call for clarity, timelines on international travel, reopening rules

Trudeau has called Thursday meeting, premiers say they expect to leave that meeting with a plan

The B.C. government’s vaccine booking website is busy processing second-dose appointments, with more than 76 per cent of adults having received a first dose. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations stable for Tuesday

108 new confirmed cases, 139 in hospital, 39 in intensive care

A worker, at left, tends to a customer at a cosmetics shop amid the COVID-19 pandemic Thursday, May 20, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Half of cosmetics sold in Canada, U.S. contain toxic chemicals: study

Researchers found that 56% of foundations and eye products contain high levels of fluorine

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read