The Board of Governors of the Justice Institute of British Columbia (JIBC), a leading post-secondary institution for justice and public safety professionals, announced the early retirement of President and CEO, Dr. Michel Tarko. After 35 years of public service, Michel has decided to embark on a new chapter and as a result will step down from his role effective December 31, 2023.
Under Tarko’s guidance, JIBC has solidified its reputation for leadership in justice and public safety education, research and innovation. His unwavering commitment to high academic standards, Indigenization and sector engagement has fostered an environment where students, staff and faculty can thrive.
“On behalf of the Board of Governors, I offer my thanks to Michel for his many contributions to JIBC, first as VP, Academic for three years, and as President and CEO for more than a decade,” said Maria Preovolos, Chair of the Board of Governors.
Throughout his tenure, Tarko has led with empathy and insight. His strategic foresight and ability to build relationships across the sectors that JIBC serves have been instrumental in establishing JIBC as a uniquely innovative post-secondary institution.
He will leave a legacy of academic and operational excellence. Under his guidance, JIBC’s schools were established, and the role of deans introduced. He also spearheaded the launch of new programs, including the post-baccalaureate diplomas in law enforcement studies and disaster management. Finally, he has helped drive the ongoing work of Truth & Reconciliation at JIBC, championing the opening of the Aboriginal Gathering Place and the deepening of JIBC’s commitment to Indigenization through the Living Indigenization Plan.
“Michel is leaving JIBC in a position of strength. We know the Executive Team and JIBC’s outstanding staff and faculty will continue to advance strategic priorities with confidence,” added Preovolos.
“It has been an honour to serve as President and CEO of JIBC and this decision did not come easily,” said Tarko. “Every day, I’ve been inspired both by the self-sacrifice of our students pursuing careers in justice and public safety, and the dedication of staff and faculty working to achieve JIBC’s vision of safer communities and a more just society.”
The Board of Governors have begun developing a recruitment and transition plan to ensure continuity and a seamless transfer of responsibilities. More information will be shared as it comes available.