Dr. McConnell has worked within the criminal justice system for the last 30 years in a frontline capacity. Specifically, in this work, he has worked exclusively in gang prevention, intervention and suppression for the last 15 years with a variety of police gang units. This practitioner experience combined with the pursuit of lifelong academic learning situates him for teaching and facilitating learning sessions on a variety of criminal justice-related topics and specifically gang and organized crime.
Dr. McConnell has held sessional/contract instructor status at the Justice Institute of British Columbia, Douglas College, Royal Roads University, Wilfred Laurier University, the Native Education Centre and Simon Fraser University Criminology. Moreover, Dr. McConnell is a faculty member at Kwantlen Polytechnic University in the Faculty of Arts-Criminology. In addition, he is one of the Safer Schools Together GRIP (Gang Reduction through Informed Practices) facilitators.
Dr. McConnell has a master’s degree from the University of Leicester and a doctorate degree from London Metropolitan University at the John Grieve Center for Excellence in Policing. His thesis is titled, Gangs in British Columbia: Mafioso, Gangster or Thug? which included qualitative research with almost 250 hours of field observations in Chicago, Toronto, Hobbema, Los Angeles and London, England. He has continued his research with gangs in New Orleans, Edmonton, Calgary, and Detroit.
Dr. McConnell was awarded the Frederick Thrasher Award for Excellence in Gang Scholarship, Leadership and Enforcement in 2014 at the National Gang Centre in Chicago, Illinois. He served as a citizen participant on the Surrey Mayors Task Force on Gangs, is a member of both the Canadian and the American Society of Evidence-Based Policing and is on the Board of the National Gang Crime Research Center in Chicago, Illinois. He has published in both the Journal of Gang Research and the Journal of Police Practices.
Dr. Dianne Symonds and Dr. McConnell recently completed their book, Stop Gangs Now: Your Part, a community health perspective on reducing gangs in the community.
Dr. Keiron McConnell
National Gang Crime Research Center Staff