Armand La Barge
As a new police cadet in 1973, Armand La Barge had no inkling of the positive impact his career would have on Ontario citizens. Twenty-nine years later, he was appointed Chief of York Regional Police, the third-largest municipal police service in the province at the time, serving a multicultural population of 1.1 million people in nine municipalities. Mr. La Barge was a trailblazer, setting the standard for police leadership as a champion of diversity and inclusiveness. During his tenure as chief from 2002-10, he made it his mission to reach out to marginalized communities, establishing relationships and giving those citizens a voice. His progressive outlook over his 37-year distinguished career earned him respect not only in York Region but in the policing community as well. He was elected President of the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police, served as the Ontario Director of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police and he was an associate member of the First Nation Chiefs of Police Association. Now retired, Mr. La Barge was appointed to the Order of Ontario in 2022 in recognition of his lifelong commitment to diversity, inclusion, social justice, human rights and community activism.