Surrey Police Service appoints three more inspectors

Next is recruiting process for sergeants and staff-sergeants

SURREY Police Service Chief Constable Norm Lipinski on Thursday announced the appointment of three more inspectors to the SPS’s leadership cadre: Tony Farahbakhchian, Rachel Milne and Benoit Rodrigue.

On March 4, Lipinski had announced the appointment of inspectors Earl Andersen, Steve Drennan and Ryan Hall.

Earlier, Lipinski had announced the selection of three deputy chief constables: Mike LeSage, Jennifer Hyland and Todd Matsumoto; and three superintendents: Lavinder (Lav) Mangat, Allison Good and Michael Procyk.

In his 29 years of policing service with the RCMP, Farahbakhchian has had a wide range of assignments that were local, provincial, national, and international in scope. From UN peace keeping missions in Haiti to operational local policing across the country, he ultimately landed in the Lower Mainland. He is currently an Inspector with “E” Division RCMP – Federal Serious and Organized Crime Unit, Financial Integrity Program. His policing experience is varied, from leading community policing initiatives to criminal investigative experience with a focus on financial crimes. 

Rachel Milne

Initially starting her career in Saskatchewan, Milne later transferred to British Columbia where she has served in several communities within the Lower Mainland. In her 25-year career with the RCMP, Milne has focused on General Duty policing overseeing a media and communications team, a community response team, a school liaison section, a rural policing unit, and has been the liaison for local Indigenous bands.  Currently she oversees all operational and administrative aspects of frontline policing for the City of Burnaby and sits on numerous multi-jurisdictional policing committees.

Benoit Rodrigue

Rodrigue has served with both the Vancouver Police and the RCMP. He is currently a district inspector with the Canadian Pacific Police Service where he oversees police operations and logistics of five detachments. Throughout his career, he served many communities in many supervisory roles from the ranks of corporal, sergeant, staff-sergeant, and inspector. Of note, Rodrigue played an instrumental role with the formation of the Surrey Gang Enforcement Team.

Lipinski said: “With the leadership that is in place we are presently working on a deployment model. Surrey Police Service is in a strong position to continue the forward momentum. We are moving in the right direction at the right pace to operationalize a municipal police service. This is an exciting time for the City and for the Surrey Police Service as we move ever closer to becoming the police of jurisdiction and proudly serving the citizens of Surrey.” 

The Surrey Police Service is now initiating the recruiting process for experienced officers at the sergeant and staff-sergeant ranks. Visit the Surrey Police Service website at: Careers | Surrey Police for more information and to make an application. 

BACKGROUNDER

Tony Farahbakhchian has over 29 years of service with the RCMP. He obtained his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Criminology in 1991 and started his career in Montreal working in several federal sections. In 1996 he served in a UN Peace Keeping Mission in Haiti, training and mentoring members of their National Police Force. He worked the remainder of his service in the Lower Mainland (LMD) where he had the opportunity to lead teams at municipal, provincial and federal levels.

He has also been part of the LMD Tactical Troop/Public Order as an NCO and Officer leading teams across the province and the country on a variety of assignments. He was stationed at numerous LMD detachments where he worked as patrol supervisor and watch commander. He managed Community Policing Programs which included the Crime Reduction Unit, Youth Detail, Prolific Target Team, Auxiliary Constable Program, Emergency Preparedness, Mental Health Liaison and Uniformed Crime Reduction Units.

He spent a considerable amount of his service in financial crimes as supervisor in charge of the Coquitlam Economic Crime Unit, and at the “E” Division Integrated Proceeds of Crime and Commercial Crime Sections investigating multi-jurisdiction frauds and money laundering. He spent three years as the “Pacific Region Counterfeit Coordinator” where he was responsible for the training and related enforcement initiatives across B.C. and the Yukon. 

On a personal note, he was born and raised in Belgium and is fluent in French. His father is Persian and his mother is Roman Catholic. They moved to Canada in 1979 where they settled in the Lower Mainland.  He has been married since 1996 and has two adult children. His wife was a police officer for 26 years and retired in 2019. 

Rachel Milne began her policing career in 1996 and has 25 years of operational policing experience with the RCMP.  Her career began as a community policing officer in Lumsden, Saskatchewan.  In 2000, she was transferred to British Columbia where she continued her service in the Lower Mainland. In her current role as the Assistant Operations Officer, Milne oversees all operational and administrative aspects of frontline policing for the City of Burnaby and sits on numerous multi-jurisdictional policing committees.  Milne spent several years as a member of the Lower Mainland Integrated Tactical Troop, where she gained knowledge and experience in public order and deployed to several high-profile events. 

Milne is the recipient of the RCMP Long Service Medal and has been formally recognized for leadership, valour and for excellence in performance.  She has a diploma in Applied Arts and Sciences and certificates in Incident Command Systems, Critical Incident Response, and Senior Police Administration. She is currently enrolled in an Executive Leadership Certificate program at Simon Fraser University.

Milne is a Metis citizen, originally from Thunder Bay, Ontario.  She is married to a firefighter and they have one daughter.  Outside of work, they enjoy camping, golf and travel.

Benoit Rodrigue brings more than 28 years of policing experience between the Vancouver Police, RCMP and the Canadian Pacific Police Service. In his current role as the B.C. District Inspector, he oversees police operations and logistics of five detachments.  Prior to joining CP Police, Rodrigue was the Operations Officer at the North Vancouver RCMP overseeing frontline policing and managing municipal staff.  He developed long-lasting relationships with internal and external clients and partners including elected officials, senior police executives and various community service organizations.

In 2018, he was promoted to the rank of inspector as the Regional Duty Officer and managed the police operations of the Lower Mainland District comprising 13 detachments.  He offered strategic and operational oversight including the coordination of major emerging events. Of note, Rodrigue played an instrumental role with the formation of the Surrey Gang Enforcement Team (SGET) back in 2009. Furthermore, his team seized an unpresented number of firearms from organized crime groups.

Rodrigue brings a wealth of operational expertise, in addition to a strong HR background including the ability to manage workplace issues such as disability management, performance management, conflict resolution and financial stewardship. He is firm believer in diversity, inclusion and equity.

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