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Truro police chief receives prestigious award

Truro Police Chief Dave McNeil was recently presented with the Order of Merit of the Police Forces. He received the award during a ceremony at Rideau Hall.
Truro Police Chief Dave McNeil was recently presented with the Order of Merit of the Police Forces. He received the award during a ceremony at Rideau Hall. - Lynn Curwin
TRURO, N.S. —

When he joined the Truro Police Service in 1993, Dave MacNeil had no idea he’d someday be receiving a national award for his work as chief.

Governor General Julie Payette presented MacNeil with the award during a ceremony at Rideau Hall on Oct. 31.

“It’s really humbling, and a great honour,” he said. “I’m very grateful.

“Being recognized is nice and it was prestigious company to be in.”

He was the only Nova Scotian from the group of 40 recipients. The award recognizes exceptional merit, contributions to policing and community development.

“I’m just doing my job to the best of my ability, and I love my job,” said MacNeil.

“I always wanted to be a police officer. I grew up in Halifax and went to St. Mary’s and the police academy. I thought I’d end up working in Halifax, but Lonnie Murray hired me here in 1993 and when I got here I loved it. Both the job and the community were great. Here, you have the services and amenities of a bigger centre, but with the sense of community you get in a smaller place.”

He remembers both typewriters and computers being in use at the police station when he arrived.

“Truro has always been up to date on equipment and training,” he said.

“I like the fact that people know you here and you build a rapport. I feel what I do day to day has an impact on the community. I believe we’re community problem solvers, and that gives a great deal of job satisfaction. We want to strengthen the community.”

When Chief Ken MacLean was ready to retire from the service he told MacNeil, who was then deputy chief, that he was ready for the top role. He has been serving as chief for the past decade and is also a member of several local, provincial and national committees.

“The people I work with make my job easier; they do the hard work,” he said. “I’m very appreciative of all that Truro has offered me as a career and I wouldn’t trade my job for anything.”

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