Baha Abu-Laban, C.M.
For decades, Baha Abu-Laban has championed cross-cultural understanding. Professor emeritus of sociology at the University of Alberta and founding director of its Prairie Metropolis Centre for Research on Immigration, Integration and Diversity, he has brought together researchers, policy-makers and civil society organizations to support the transition and integration of immigrants. His commitment to building an inclusive society is exemplified by his bridge-building between the various ethnic and racial communities that make up our multicultural nation.
Ewan Affleck, C.M.
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
Ewan Affleck is dedicated to breaking down barriers to health care. A medical doctor in Canada’s North for over 20 years, he has worked to improve the delivery of health services in remote areas through the pioneering use of electronic medical records. His leadership in this area is transforming health care by moving information—rather than people—over vast distances, offering quality care to patients in their home environments. In addition, he is an ultra-marathoner whose love of sport led to his involvement in youth adventure expeditions and to working as a physician at the 2008 Arctic Winter Games and the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games.
Elizabeth Baird, C.M.
Elizabeth Baird has spent decades expanding our knowledge of Canada’s culinary diversity. As a cookbook author, newspaper columnist, and food editor for Canadian Living magazine, she has explored the country, writing about the unique foods and culinary gems that she has discovered in every region, in all four seasons. She has mentored aspiring food writers, as well as students at the Stratford Chefs School, and has championed Breakfast for Living, a program that helps schools set up nutrition programs for their students.
Walter Boudreau, C.M., C.Q.
Walter Boudreau is one of the leading lights of contemporary music. As the artistic director and principal conductor of the Société de musique contemporaine du Québec for over 25 years, he has made it a renowned institution in the field of new music in North America. He has also been called on to lead a number of other musical ensembles in Canada and abroad, and his works have been played around the world. As an ardent promoter of musical creation, he has established a fund to finance the commissioning of Canadian works. He has also worked to raise awareness of contemporary music, and has organized a variety of participatory events, including the unforgettable Millennium Symphony.
Rabbi Reuven P. Bulka, C.M.
Rabbi Reuven Bulka’s dedication and inspiring leadership have enriched the lives of many Canadians. Rabbi of Congregation Machzikei Hadas for more than 45 years, he has also shared his faith and counsel as an author, broadcaster and regular newspaper columnist. A blood donor 345 times, he is best known for his tireless community involvement in interfaith dialogue, health care and humanitarian causes, including the Ottawa Regional Cancer Foundation Courage Campaign, the Trillium Gift of Life Network, and Kindness Week, which he founded.
Édith Cloutier, C.M., C.Q.
Val d’Or, Quebec
For nearly 25 years, Édith Cloutier has been working to improve the lives of Aboriginal people, particularly those in urban settings. Executive director of the Val-d’Or Native Friendship Centre, she has transformed it into a service hub and a cultural anchor for the region’s First Peoples. Under her leadership, the Centre has become a model and one of the most important such centres in Canada. Also serving as president of the Regroupement des centres d’amitié autochtones du Québec, and the first Aboriginal woman to have chaired the board of a Quebec university, she played a key role at the Université du Québec en Abitibi-Témiscamingue in developing culturally relevant services that foster academic success, including the First Peoples Pavilion.
Shelagh Day, C.M.
Vancouver, British Columbia
An authority on women’s rights, Shelagh Day is a catalyst for social change. As founding president of the Women’s Legal Education and Action Fund and co-founder of the Court Challenges Program, she backed causes advancing the equality rights of girls and women. She has also been the driving force behind numerous initiatives and organizations that aim to realize human rights related to disability, race, poverty and economic inequality.
Clare Drake, C.M., A.O.E.
Clare Drake has transformed the training of coaches in Canada. A university hockey coach for three decades, he was known for his analytical approach to coaching, focusing on tactics, systems, techniques and player management. Highly regarded for sharing his strategies with rivals, he also mentored generations of amateur and professional coaches of men’s and women’s hockey through his involvement in local, provincial and national coaching clinics. In addition, he helped to develop a national coaching certification program designed for all types of coaches and sports.
Louise Forestier, C.M.
Louise Forestier has been a leading figure in Quebec culture for close to 50 years. Since the beginning of her career, she has been an ambassador of Quebec song as both a singer and songwriter, becoming known to the general public through the legendary show Osstidcho. She has produced over 20 albums, numerous shows in Canada and Europe, and such timeless songs as “La Saisie.” She also performed in large-scale musical productions, including Starmania and Nelligan, and has participated in numerous television series and films, including “Orderers”. She is also involved in training young artists and was a coach at the Festival en chanson de Petite-Vallée, in Gaspé.
Geoffrey David Green, C.M.
Geoff Green is committed to fostering generations of ecologically conscious citizens. An expedition leader and educator, he has led more than 100 expeditions to the polar regions. A desire to share his experiences and incite change led him to found Students on Ice, a globally unique educational program that unites students from around the world with diverse leaders and experts during expeditions to the Arctic and Antarctic. He has brought together youth from all walks of life and cultural backgrounds as a means of nurturing a heightened understanding and respect for the planet’s global ecosystem and the inspiration to protect it.
James Dickinson Irvin, C.M.
Dick Irvin is one of Canada’s most beloved sports broadcasters. His affinity for hockey began at a young age and led him to a career in front of the camera. The legendary voice of the Montreal Canadiens on both TV and radio, he became a fixture to thousands of fans across the nation for three decades as a play-by-play announcer, colour commentator and host for CBC’s “Hockey Night in Canada.” In addition, he was the driving force behind the annual Sports Celebrity Dinner for the Montreal Children’s Hospital Foundation for over 25 years.
Elisapee Ishulutaq, C.M.
Elisapee Ishulutaq’s artistry was integral to the growth of print and tapestry making in Pangnirtung. An Elder, mentor and role model, she is the only living co-founder of the Uqqurmiut Centre For Arts & Crafts, a key pillar of Pangnirtung’s cultural history and economy. As an artist, her latest compositions have employed new media and increasingly innovative colour, form and scale. With this capacity to embrace the avant-garde, she has catalyzed a vital creative evolution in her artistic community.
Aditya Jha, C.M.
An entrepreneur and philanthropist, Aditya Jha is committed to improving the lives of youth. After achieving business success in Canada and wanting to give back to his adopted home, he established a charitable foundation to support education and entrepreneurship, particularly among marginalized and Aboriginal youth. He also works to build bridges between Canada and India, and was instrumental in establishing the Chanchlani India Policy Centre at the University of Waterloo.
James Peter (Hamish) Kimmins, C.M.
Denman Island, British Columbia
Hamish Kimmins has influenced the practice of forestry in Canada. Over four decades, as a professor of forest ecology at the University of British Columbia, he challenged industry professionals to apply the best scientific understanding of the dynamics of forest ecosystems in their interactions with forests. He also authored the core academic text in his field and developed modelling software used to analyze forest growth. His research, lectures and advocacy have enhanced environmental stewardship in forest management and improved the sustainability of our forest resources.
Lucia Kowaluk, C.M.
Social worker Lucia Kowaluk has tirelessly invested her time and talents into improving the quality of life of her fellow citizens. Her spirit and drive were instrumental in the opening of a drop-in centre for the homeless and the creation of Communauté Milton-Parc, one of the largest co-operative housing projects in Canada. She has also been a strong proponent of urban ecology, and has helped to preserve historic buildings and neighbourhoods in Montréal.
Jacques Lacombe, C.M., C.Q.
Jacques Lacombe is a conductor who has brought honour to Canada on the international stage while remaining firmly anchored in his hometown of Trois-Rivières. Currently music director of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, as well as music director and principal conductor of the Orchestre symphonique de Trois-Rivières, he is also a guest conductor for numerous orchestras in Canada and around the world, as well as for such leading opera houses as the Royal Opera House in London and the Deutsche Oper Berlin. He is renowned for featuring orchestral works by Canadian composers and has distinguished himself by his commitment to the next generation and to schools in the Mauricie region of Quebec.
Janice MacKinnon, C.M., S.O.M.
A scholar and politician, Janice MacKinnon is a respected voice in public policy debates. A professor of fiscal policy at the University of Saskatchewan, she became Canada’s first female provincial minister of Finance, where she was instrumental in restoring Saskatchewan’s fiscal stability. Since returning to academia, she has served as a highly regarded public commentator and sits on numerous boards, most notably as chair of Canada’s Economic Advisory Council and of the Institute for Research on Public Policy.
Murray D. McEwen, C.M.
Considered one of the trailblazers of the sweetener industry, Murray McEwen has shown vision and leadership within the business sector and in his community. He headed several premier refineries, including Redpath Sugars, and played a major role in developing the sugar and sweetener business in North America. Beyond his three decades in the food industry, he has been an active contributor to many community organizations, including Breakfast for Learning, a national charity that provides children with the nutrition they need to grow and learn.
Heather Anne Menzies, C.M.
Heather Menzies is one of Canada’s leading thinkers on technology and society. She is the author of several influential books that underscore how we are stressed out, disconnected and overworked in the digital age. Her call to remain in touch with others and ourselves in a technology-driven culture has resonated with academics and the public alike. A passionate advocate for social justice, she is a founding member of the Ottawa-based Women’s Health Project, which supports women who have been victims of gender-based violence in Bosnia, Somalia and elsewhere in Africa.
Wesley Nicol, C.M.
Wesley Nicol has fostered Canadian entrepreneurship and strengthened his community. A self-made man, lawyer and community developer, he has shared much of his wealth through his family foundation, which supports several charitable organizations in his community. He is best known for his long-standing, passionate devotion to encouraging student entrepreneurship. In that pursuit, he founded a national university-level entrepreneurial competition and established an entrepreneurial institute at Carleton University.
Constance V. Pathy, C.M., C.Q.
Constance Pathy has contributed immensely to the vitality of Canada’s cultural life. A patron of the arts, she has also been a dedicated and generous leader of several arts organizations, including Les Grands Ballets Canadiens and the Canadian Guild of Crafts, for more than 30 years. The music industry has equally benefited from her passion and unwavering commitment to the arts. As founder of the McGill International String Quartet Academy, and president of the Ladies’ Morning Musical Club for almost 30 years, she has promoted musical excellence by bringing talent to the fore.
Monica Patten, C.M.
Monica Patten has encouraged Canadians to invest in their communities. As president and CEO of Community Foundations of Canada, a national body that oversees a network of local grantmaking organizations, she guided the movement through a period of unprecedented growth, encouraging philanthropy and helping generous citizens channel their giving to best meet community needs. Now retired, she continues to share her experience and passion as a volunteer with many charitable organizations, including The Lawson Foundation and the Anglican Church of Canada.
J. Derek Riley, C.M.
Derek Riley has made invaluable contributions to the life of his community. After returning from wartime service, he began his business career and pursued his love of rowing. A member of Canada’s Olympic team in 1952, he worked tirelessly to build the sport in Manitoba, and was instrumental in establishing a new facility for the Winnipeg Rowing Club. Former chair of the North West Company, he is also well-known in Winnipeg for his generous support of community endeavours, including the Assiniboine Park Conservancy and the Save the Jets Campaign.
Michel Ringuet, C.M., C.Q.
At once a chemistry professor, a researcher and a university leader, Michel Ringuet is known above all as a man of action. As rector of the Université du Québec à Rimouski (UQAR), he oversaw the institution’s development, particularly in research, helping to extend the influence of the Institut des sciences de la mer de Rimouski, which has earned Quebec an international reputation in this field. Under his leadership, the university became an imposing force for regional economic development. Proud of his home region, he is also involved in various community organizations devoted to culture, health, and heritage preservation.
Sandra Rotman, C.M., O.Ont.
Sandra Rotman is a role model of strategic philanthropy. She has been a driving force behind several innovative health initiatives, including a centre for global health, a centre for health sector strategies, and a program in neuropsychiatry. She also founded Rise Asset Development, a program designed to empower individuals with mental health challenges by providing them with business loans and mentorship. Over the years, a range of cultural organizations have benefited from her engagement, including the Art Gallery of Ontario and the National Ballet of Canada.
Kelly Russell, C.M.
Bell Island, Newfoundland and Labrador
Kelly Russell has been instrumental in preserving Newfoundland’s traditional folklore and music. A musician himself, he sought out master fiddlers to learn from them and to record their unique music, which he then notated and published. His publication of over 500 fiddle tunes has ensured generations to come will have access to their musical heritage. Also a member of such landmark bands as Figgy Duff and The Wonderful Grand Band, he founded Pigeon Inlet Productions, the province’s first independent record label devoted to preserving and promoting the folk music of Newfoundland and Labrador.
Elexis Schloss, C.M.
For decades, Elexis Schloss has been an active and committed philanthropist and volunteer. Her generosity of spirit and ability to rally others around charitable causes have helped to shape her community. She has supported initiatives in the arts, athletics and health care, and also worked on behalf of immigrant women, the homeless, Aboriginal peoples and children in Africa living with HIV. Her passion for helping others is exemplified in the pivotal role she played in founding Compassion House, a housing and support program in northern Alberta for women undergoing treatment for breast cancer.
Aurel Schofield, C.M.
Dieppe, New Brunswick
Aurel Schofield has had a tremendous impact on French-language health services in New Brunswick. As a visionary and collaborator, this family physician forged a partnership between the Université de Moncton and the Université de Sherbrooke, and created and administers the Centre de formation médicale du Nouveau-Brunswick. In addition to helping students obtain French-language training in their home region, he has fostered the recruitment and retention of Francophone physicians in this often under-served area. He has also devoted himself to various other organizations, and has chaired the Société Santé et Mieux-être en français du Nouveau-Brunswick and the Société Santé en français Canada.
Gilbert Sicotte, C.M.
Gilbert Sicotte has had a remarkable acting career. A talented and gifted actor, he has taken on television roles that have left their mark on the collective imagination of Quebeckers, including that of Jean-Paul Belleau in “Des dames de coeur” and “Un signe de feu.” His success has not hindered him from making a name for himself on stage and in film, where he has championed the works of young filmmakers. In addition, for over 25 years, he has helped train the next generation at Montréal’s Conservatoire d’art dramatique, where he is considered an outstanding educator.
Linda Silver Dranoff, C.M.
Linda Silver Dranoff has been instrumental in advancing equality in Canadian family law. As a lawyer, she has argued many precedent-setting cases that have directly benefited women by recognizing marriage as a social and financial partnership. Notably, her lobbying efforts resulted in essential reforms to family law legislation, including equal sharing of all matrimonial property between spouses following a separation or death, and automatic cost-of-living adjustments in support payments. As well, she has written several books and a long-running law column in Chatelaine magazine aimed at average Canadians, helping to make our laws more accessible and widely understood.
Vaclav Smil, C.M.
Vaclav Smil is a renowned expert on global energy issues. A professor emeritus in the faculty of environment at the University of Manitoba, he provides critical insights into energy development, distribution and usage challenges. His prolific writings are considered essential reading by policy-makers, scientists and academics in the field. He is a frequent speaker at international forums, where he emphasizes the hazards of our current levels of energy consumption and uses the lessons of history to point a way forward.
Joan C. Snyder, C.M.
Joan Snyder is an enthusiastic community builder and philanthropist. As a result of a successful business career, she has supported initiatives in athletics, education, social services, health care and the arts in Alberta. Thanks to her giving, the University of Calgary funds medical programs in critical care research and in infectious diseases. In addition, the university’s women’s hockey team has benefited from improved sports services and scholarships. Her deep generosity of spirit has also touched such organizations as WinSport Canada, Fort Calgary and the Calgary Humane Society.
Donald Creighton Rae Sobey, C.M.
Stellarton, Nova Scotia
Donald Sobey is highly regarded for his contributions as a businessman and cultural philanthropist. A key figure in building one of the largest food retailers in Canada, he has channelled his passion for the arts into supporting such institutions as the National Gallery of Canada. Notably, he created the Sobey Art Award, Canada’s largest prize for young contemporary artists. He also created scholarships for students from Atlantic Canada who attend Queen’s University, Dalhousie University and the University of King’s College.
Sara Vered, C.M.
Sara Vered has spent her life bettering the world around her. Her community stewardship and philanthropy have benefited numerous organizations, including the National Gallery of Canada and the University of Ottawa Heart Institute. She is also a beloved member of Ottawa’s Jewish community. In an effort to foster a better understanding of Judaism in Canada, she funded the Vered Jewish Canadian Studies Program at the University of Ottawa.
Beverley Wybrow, C.M.
For more than 30 years, Beverley Wybrow has demonstrated a singular devotion to the welfare of women. She was instrumental in establishing the Assaulted Women’s Helpline, the first telephone crisis service of its kind in Ontario. Since 1991, she has led the work of the Canadian Women’s Foundation, developing programs that stop violence, end poverty and empower girls. Her inspirational and innovative leadershiphas helped many women and their families build brighter futures for themselves.
Gilles Brassard, O.C.
Gilles Brassard is a world leader in computer science. A professor at the Université de Montréal, he discovered that the behaviour of fundamental particles could be harnessed to enable a strictly confidential form of communication. This gave birth to an entire new field of study: quantum cryptography. Through his subsequent invention of quantum teleportation, he revolutionized the processing and communication of information. Recognized as the founder of quantum information science in Canada, he has helped our country to become a hub for this science of the future at the international level.
Douglas Coupland, O.C.
West Vancouver, British Columbia
Douglas Coupland is a boundary-blurring writer and visual artist who explores the 21st-century human condition. His many non-fiction and artistic investigations have redefined what being ‘Canadian’ can mean. His works of art and memorial sculptures span the country, most notably Vancouver’s Terry Fox Memorial, and he has authored everything from biographies of our national icons to a collection of essays celebrating the city of Vancouver. His literary works have been published in over 30 languages, and he has also written and performed for England’s Royal Shakespeare Company.
Céline Galipeau, O.C., O.Q.
Céline Galipeau is one of our most remarkable journalists. With Radio-Canada for nearly three decades, she quickly became a foreign correspondent. Known for her humanist vision and for the clarity and intelligence of her news stories, she notably covered major conflicts, including the wars in Chechnya, Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan. She is especially renowned for her reports on the status of women, covering such difficult topics as Chinese foot binding and Afghan women being burned alive. In 2009, she broke with tradition by hosting “Téléjournal,” becoming the first female news anchor on national television.
John Ross Grace, O.C.
Vancouver, British Columbia
John Grace has crafted new ways to produce energy with a smaller environmental footprint. A Canada Research Chair and professor in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of British Columbia, he is one of the world’s leading authorities on fluidization, the process by which a solid material display is converted to a dynamic state. His research and publications have led to significant advances in the field, including the development of more efficient reactors to produce electrical power, fuels and steam while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Sherrill E. Grace, O.C.
Vancouver, British Columbia
A pioneer in Canadian literary studies, Sherrill Grace has helped us to better understand our shared history. Her essays and books capture the essence of Canadian identity and provide biographical insight on such literary figures as Sharon Pollock and Timothy Findley. Her book Canada and the Idea of North was one of the first to explore how Canadians define themselves through their relationship with the North. Her current work examines the impact of both world wars on our society. She is an important mentor to young scholars across Canada, and is known for her active support of several professional associations.
Ronald (Ronnie) Hawkins, O.C.
For more than 50 years, musician Ronnie Hawkins has demonstrated a strong devotion to Canada’s music industry. Often referred to as the “father of Canadian rock n’ roll”, he was a key player in the 1960s rock scene, with his band The Hawks serving as a launching pad for a host of Canadian musicians. In addition to producing scores of singles and albums, he has performed in support of many charitable causes, notably the Peterborough Flood Relief and the Schizophrenia Society of Ontario.