Sylvie Bourassa-Muise has come a long way since dreaming of becoming a police officer at age 13. Originally from Sturgeon Falls, she was recently named Commanding Officer of the RCMP’s Depot division, which houses the RCMP Academy in Saskatchewan.
Bourassa-Muise’s career has seen her take up posts throughout Canada and around the globe over the last 34 years. She’s worked in a panoply of capacities including leading RCMP divisions in Nova Scotia, working in investigative services, protective policing, incident command, and internal security.
The new Commanding Officer will be no stranger to the RCMP Academy; in her past capacity as drill instructor she taught over 1,200 cadets. Among other notable accomplishments, she helped found the National Child Exploitation Centre, which plays a key role in the work against child abuse, and she provided protective policing for a former Governor General as well as for the Duchess of Cambridge, Katherine, during the last royal visit.
During the official change of command ceremony on June 11 – the RCMP’s first ever virtual ceremony – she acknowledged that she wouldn’t be where she is today without “the support of my wonderful spouse Bob Muise, my daughter Chanelle, my mom and late father [Janine and Yves Bourassa].”
She boasted about having recruited several family members into the RCMP, including her recently retired husband and her daughter. The former Sturgeonite explained it was her father Yves Bourassa that influenced her to join the RCMP after she decided to pursue a policing career. He told her “They’re the best.” She pursued two internships with the police force during her university studies and now, 34 years later, she’s climbed the ladder to the fourth highest rank in the organization.
“Sustainable, meaningful change takes action,” said Bourassa-Muise. She’s already identified key priorities for her new role, including continuing her work around mental health, reconciliation, and diversity. The newly installed Commanding Officer assured that she is “committed [to] embrace diversity, be patient and kind, […] and to keep growing and moving forward to serve my country to the best of my abilities.”