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Meet the Team

Scott Blandford

Scott BlanfordDr. Scott Blandford is a retired (30 year) police officer who has held a variety of operational and administrative positions, including emergency response, criminal investigation, training, human resources, and research and planning, where he was responsible for policy and procedure development, major planning and overseeing the development a competency-based performance management, career development, and promotional system for his organization. In addition, he has been an instructor and administrator for several college and university programs focused on policing and public safety for over 30 years. He is currently the coordinator of all undergraduate and graduate policing/public safety programs for Wilfrid Laurier University, in addition to sitting on several internal and external committees.

As a life-long learner, Scott has completed a Fanshawe College Management Studies certificate, a Dalhousie University Certificate in Police Leadership; is a graduate of the Bachelor of Professional Arts (Criminal Justice major) program at Athabasca University; and has completed a Diploma in Public Administration and Master of Public Administration degree at the University of Western Ontario. Scott completed his Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) degree at Columbia Southern University, with his dissertation, entitled Hired with Competence: An Examination of Police Hiring Standards in Canada, focusing on the nexus between performance management and competency-based hiring practices in Canadian police services. His research focus is on organizational development in public safety organizations and competency-based recruiting and development of police officers, and he has presented nationally and internationally on these topics.

Peter Shadgett

Peter ShadgettPeter Shadgett is a subject matter expert who has designed and delivered online courses for Laurier’s Master of Public Safety program as well as our Policing and Public Safety undergraduate programs. He is endorsed by Emergency Management Ontario as a Level III Instructor, has taught at three other post-secondary institutions, lectured at the Ontario Provincial Police College and the Ontario Police College and at various provincial ministries, public sector and private sector agencies.

Peter has 30 years of public safety experience (Ontario Provincial Police), including frontline and mid-management, and 17 years at the executive level advising senior executives, colleagues, partners and stakeholders across the public safety and regulatory enforcement community. Peter is experienced at the government ministry level, providing briefings and advice to senior government officials on public safety issues. Executive positions Peter has held include:

  • Director of Criminal Intelligence Service Ontario
  • Commander, Professional Standards
  • Commander, Investigations and Support Bureau
  • Commander, Organized Crime Bureau

Ted Herbert

Ted HerbertTed has spent his career studying leadership and applying what he learned in real leadership roles. He has served in multiple leadership positions in not-for-profit organizations and in the public sector in educational and public safety departments.

He recently retired from the Ontario Public Service, where he spent nearly 20 years building coaching skills in managers across a wide spectrum of Ontario ministries and facilitating adult learning programs.

Prior to joining the OPS, Ted worked as a trainer and curriculum development specialist with the Calgary Police Service where he designed and delivered adult learning programs and led the recruit training program for the Service. He also was the Director of the Police Leadership Certificate Program for Dalhousie University where he still instructs in continuing education courses.

Ted was asked to lead the organizing committee for the 1997 World Police and Fire Games in Calgary. He was the Executive Director or the organization from 1992 through 1997. The Games were a huge success. There were over 10,000 athletes from 36 countries competing in 64 different competitive events and a large number of social and ceremonial activities as well.

Ted is a gifted educator and presenter, having developed online and classroom courses for a variety of educational institutions and public sector organizations. He has been a featured speaker on coaching and leadership at conferences across North America. He developed and currently teaches Leadership and Career Development in the Laurier Policing program and Leadership and Ethics in Public Safety in the Master of Public Safety.

Lauren Eisler

Lauren EislerDr. Lauren Eisler joined Laurier’s Brantford campus in July of 2004 as one of the four original members of the new criminology program. She was the program coordinator for seven years, working to develop the program. She also wrote the program proposal for the successful Master of Criminology program during this time. She moved into various administrative roles, including assistant dean and interfaculty associate dean of program development. In 2017, she became the dean of the Faculty of Human and Social Sciences. She completed her decanal role in 2021 and returned to the Department of Criminology. During her time as the Interfaculty Associate Dean and the Dean, she worked closely with Dr. Blandford to develop and implement the suite of public safety programs. She also supported and worked closely with the Centre for Public Safety and Well-Being to create several highly successful non-credit offerings, including the Situation Table Training certificate and the certificate in Positive Psychology.

Her administrative experience has provided Dr. Eisler with the opportunity to work and interact with individuals and groups across different cultures and to develop her intercultural competency and intelligence skills. Her development has been furthered by her successful completion of three leadership certificates from Cornell University. She currently teaches in the Department of Criminology and has recently completed teaching a course in communication for Laurier’s Leadership program.

Rosemary McGowan

rosemary-headshot.pngDr. Rosemary A. McGowan is an associate professor and the program coordinator for the Leadership program at Wilfrid Laurier University (WLU). She holds a PhD from the Schulich School of Business (York University) and an MBA from the Lazaridis School of Business and Economics at WLU (Gold Medal Recipient). Rosemary has taught in the Leadership program since 2004 and currently teaches courses in leadership and followership. She firmly believes that leadership can be taught and, more importantly, that leadership skills can be learned! And, in today’s dynamic world, those leadership skills are more important than ever. Rosemary serves on various committees for the Policing and Public Safety programs at Laurier Brantford and is very pleased to be part of this important initiative with the Brantford Police Service.

 Jason Vassell

Jason VassellJason Vassell is a part-time instructor at Wilfrid Laurier University in the Faculty of Human and Social Sciences. Jason also works as a full-time professor at Durham College in the Faculty of Social and Community Services. Prior to his post-secondary teaching career, Jason worked as a constable for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in various units specializing in drug enforcement. He has a Master of Public Safety from Wilfrid Laurier University, a BAA in Justice Studies from the University of Guelph/Humber, and a Police Foundations Leadership diploma through Humber College.

Jason has extensive experience teaching diversity-related courses in law enforcement programs. He has taught Policing a Diverse Community online at Wilfrid Laurier University and various diversity-related courses at Durham College since 2012. He has been responsible for updates to these course outlines and is competent in the various theories and concepts related to the topic of diversity. He brings key experiences to the topic, being a former black-identified officer who genuinely takes an interest in increasing others' diversity competency. At Durham College, he was an instrumental committee member for the Black Student Success Network as well as the committee lead for the yearly Social Justice Week. In both committees, he helped organize and provide quality sessions for students and staff. He also led many of these sessions on diverse topics. As a result of his involvement at the college and his teaching successes, Jason received the Employee Award of Excellence for Faculty in 2023.

Shane Dixon

Shane DixonShane Dixon is an assistant professor in the Leadership Program at Wilfrid Laurier University. He received his PhD in sociology from the University of Waterloo and was a post-doctoral associate in the Human Factors Engineering Lab at Toronto Metropolitan University. Prior to joining the Leadership program, he was a senior research associate with the Centre for Research on Security Practices (CRSP) and leading up to that, he was a research facilitator in Laurier’s Office of Research Services. He teaches in the areas of leadership foundations, self-leadership, organizational change, and research methods. In past research, Shane has focused on occupational health by examining how social and organizational factors influence initiatives designed to address work-related injuries and worker well-being. He is currently pursuing research projects that analyze media representations of workplace disasters and work-related injury and illness. These projects critically examine how work-related injury, illness, and death are portrayed and how these portrayals create, reinforce, or challenge people’s understanding of workplace health. He is also interested in how workplace health is affected by factors external to organizations, such as consumer demand and stakeholders’ perceptions of corporate social responsibility (CSR) practices. Shane’s research has been published in journals such as Relations Industrielles/Industrial Relations, Ergonomics, Work: A Journal of Prevention, Assessment, and Rehabilitation, Sustainability, and Teaching Sociology.

Bryanne Smart

Bryanne SmartBryanne Smart is a member of Six Nations of the Grand River, Seneca Nation, Turtle Clan and is currently working as the Associate Director of Indigenous Relations with the University of Waterloo. She has nearly 20 years of experience working with Indigenous individuals, communities, and organizations. Previously, she has spent time working with Indspire, Ontario Native Women's Association and Aboriginal Legal Services, with an Indigenous-led criminal law practice. Bryanne values the importance of building foundational relationships as key across all facets of work and specializes in Indigenous community-led and strength-based approaches to research, program development and implementation, strategic planning, curriculum, and facilitation.

Bryanne holds a BA in Political Science and a Master of Aboriginal Education and Leadership. In her non-work life, she values her role as a mom to two girls and serves as Chair of the Board for De dwa da dehs nye>s Aboriginal Health Centre, as well as a board member for the Canadian Mental Health Association, Ontario Division, and a grant reviewer for the Ontario Trillium Foundation.