Nigel Bell


Joined the Department of Communications (DOC) in 1974. Retired from Industry Canada in 2007.

Entré au ministère des Communications (DOC) en 1974. Retraité d'Industrie Canada en 2007.




I joined the Department of Communications as a Radio Inspector in January of 1974.

Trained as an electronics technician back in Halifax at the vocational school and having worked on some radio projects in my past seemed to please Merle Styles and Larry Reid who both interviewed me for the job. I started work on the third floor of the Hastings street office in Vancouver, at the corner of Hastings and Granville and then at 800 Burrard St. when the office moved there.


After a few years, I won a position as supervisor at the Cloverdale Monitoring Station at 3884 192nd Street in Surrey and in fall of 1977, moved my home to Langley.


The office soon became a District Office and my supervision duties covered Authorizations, Investigations, and Monitoring.

I attended the British Columbia Institute of Technology part time and earned a certificate in Public Administration.

After a few years I transferred to the Regional Office as the Emergency Preparedness Officer for the region, but continued to work from the Cloverdale facility.

In the early 1990s, the Cloverdale (or Langley, as it is sometimes incorrectly called - the office is actually in Surrey) office was combined with the Vancouver office and the result was one District Office serving the whole of the Lower Mainland located in north Surrey (the Gateway office). However, I continued to work at the now abandoned Cloverdale office.

In 1989, after 10 years of part time study, I received my BA degree in Communications and Computing Science from Simon Fraser University. Terry Spurgeon, a Transport Canada emergency preparedness officer, and Peter Anderson, a professor at SFU and I developed a proposal for the Cloverdale office that was presented to the Council of Senior Federal Officials in the Pacific Region. It won their approval and the Joint Alternate Site (JAS) was born. Its purpose was as a joint federal facility to support training, exercising and preparation for emergencies in the Pacific Region. I managed the facility and together with Peter Anderson, developed telecom projects that supported emergency telecommunications (my primary role).


One of the highlights of my career was collaborating with Michel Milot on the national emergency telecom file. I became involved in NATO work and established a website based at Simon Fraser University for the NATO Civil Emergency Planning directorate and the planning boards and committees. The JAS continued to operate until 2006 and the facility was then boarded up. My on-going tele-work had already moved to my home some years before.

I retired in August of 2007 and continue to live in Langley, BC with my wife, Jette.

Nigel Bell

January 2009


Links   -   Liens

1995 - Emergency Telecommunications - When a Little Co-operation Goes a Long Way


2001 - IC's Emergency Response Teams Spring into Action

2001 - Les équipes d'intervention d'urgence d'IC au cœur de l'action


Comments from Michel Milot

Michel Milot's Comments


Cloverdale monitoring station

(Scroll down to the last photo. Nigel is in the group photo)