Saturday, April 2, 2016

New Pincher Creek RCMP Detachment Commander Sgt. Mark Harrison

RCMP Pincher Creek Detachment Commander Sgt. Mark Harrison
When people ask me how long I have been in the RCMP I say 'All my life'. - Sgt. Mark Harrison, RCMP Pincher Creek Detachment Commander

Toni Lucas

Sergeant Mark Harrison has recently taken the position of RCMP Pincher Creek Detachment Commander. Harrison has been with the RCMP for 19 years.  This is his first position as a Detachment Commander, something he said he he sees as a logical progression in his career. He has held positions in Drayton Valley, Grande Cache, Drumheller, and Strathmore. He has conducted training sessions at the RCMP Depot in Regina.  His most recent positions was with the RCMP Emergency Response Team (ERT). "That's pretty much our SWAT team," explained Harrison. "We covered all southern Alberta."

Working with that division he had exposure to a variety of interesting experiences including the G-8 and G-20 summits, which provided the opportunity to work closely with both American and Canadian Armed Forces. "It's a proud tradition. My father was a member, so I moved around all over Alberta. When people ask me how long I have been in the RCMP I say 'All my life'.'" Harrison was an Auxiliary Constable for five years before becoming a regular member.

"I love southern Alberta. I have a long history of coming down to Waterton during the years, so when Pincher Creek came and I had an opportunity to police somewhere where I love to do recreational activities, I was all okay, that's a pretty good deal for me. That's an opportunity I can't turn down." He is looking forward to camping, hiking, fishing, hunting in the area. With his wife Christine he has four children. Their youngest daughter in high school.

Harrison is looking to strengthen relationships in the area, and has already been in touch with other members in surrounding detachments. He is getting to know the other 11 members of the Pincher Creek Detachment as well. "I don't know if I have all my goals for accomplishing, because part of that is getting to know the community first, and understanding what they want. It's more about the community. Then I would develop a list of goals I would like to accomplish. At this point right now, I just want to get out and meet everybody in the community, become part of the community. I am a big proponent of community policing. I've grown up and worked in many small communities, so I understand the needs of a smaller town. I just want to make sure the town understand that the members here are for them, and we have an open door."

Harrison said he is open to ideas of how the policing in the area could be improved, and what is currently working in the area. "I want to listen to what people have to say." He introduced himself at town council during the regular meeting of Pincher Creek Town Council on Monday, March 29. He has asked to introduce himself at other committee meetings as well, including the policing committee.

"I want to hear from everybody what we need to do," he said. He encourages anyone who has input regarding this to contact him at the detachment using the local administration phone number of 403-627-6010.

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