Robert Patterson, British Columbia’s former chief electoral officer, has died of cancer at the age of 72. Patterson began working for Elections BC in 1978 and was the chief electoral officer from 1990 to 2002. Elections BC says during his time as the deputy and chief electoral officer, he oversaw seven general elections, five enumerations and two provincewide referendums. It says in a statement that Patterson took early retirement and shared his expertise on electoral administration around the world with the United Nations, the International Foundation for Electoral Systems, Foreign Affairs Canada and many other organizations. His obituary says he leaves behind his wife Heather, his son, daughter-in-law and a grandson. Patterson died Jan. 27 and a celebration of life will be held on March 9 in the Sequoia Centre at McCall Gardens, 4665 Falaise Dr. in Victoria at 1 p.m.