Robert Lunney concluded a 44-year career in police and protective services in March 1997, with all of his active service in Canada. He is the former Chief of Police of Peel Regional Police (1990-1997), Commissioner of Protection Parks and Culture, City of Winnipeg (1987-1990), Chief of Police, City of Edmonton (1974-1987) and member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, where he retired with the rank of Superintendent after 21 years of service. An international member of the Washington, DC-based Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) since 1982, Lunney was recognized by PERF in 1995 with a Leadership Award for progressive policing practices. 

Lunney is regarded as an authority on community-based policing systems. He is also a notable proponent of police accreditation, and was personally responsible for initiating accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) in three police services. 

In September 2000 he began a consulting relationship with the Office of the Oversight Commissioner for Policing Reform in Northern Ireland, which concluded in May, 2007. Following this work, Lunney was engaged by the Northern Ireland Policing Board to develop a framework for monitoring policing with the community, a relationship extending to 2009.  He is currently assisting Public Safety Canada to create a clearinghouse for police research.  Lunney is an active member of the Criminal Justice Advisory Committee for Humber College.