Order of Canada
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The Order of Canada ((フランス語:Ordre du Canada)) is a Canadian national order, admission into which is the second highest honour for merit in the system of orders, decorations, and medals of Canada. It comes second only to membership in the Order of Merit, which is within the personal gift of Canada's monarch.
To coincide with the centennial of Canadian Confederation, the three-tiered order was established in 1967 as a fellowship that recognizes the outstanding merit or distinguished service of Canadians who make a major difference to Canada through lifelong contributions in every field of endeavour, as well as the efforts by non-Canadians who have made the world better by their actions. Membership is accorded to those who exemplify the order's Latin motto, ''desiderantes meliorem patriam'', meaning "they desire a better country", a phrase taken from Hebrews 11:16. The three tiers of the order are Companion, Officer, and Member; specific individuals may be given extraordinary membership and deserving non-Canadians may receive honorary appointment into each grade.
The monarch—at present —is Sovereign of the order and the serving governor general, currently David Lloyd Johnston, is its Chancellor and Principal Companion and administers the order on behalf of the reigning king or queen. Appointees to the order are recommended by an advisory board and formally inducted by the governor general or the sovereign. , 6,531 people have been appointed to the Order of Canada, including scientists, musicians, politicians, artists, athletes, business people, television and film stars, benefactors, and others. Some have later resigned or have been removed from the order, while other appointments have been controversial. Appointees receive badges and the right to armorial bearings.
The process of founding the Order of Canada began in early 1966 and came to a conclusion on 17 April 1967, when the organization was instituted by Queen Elizabeth II, on the advice of the Canadian prime minister, Lester B. Pearson, who was assisted with the establishment of the order by John Matheson. The association was officially launched on 1 July 1967, the 100th anniversary of Canadian Confederation, with Governor General Roland Michener being the first inductee to the order—to the level of Companion—and on 7 July of the same year, 90 more people were appointed, including Vincent Massey, Louis St. Laurent, Hugh MacLennan, David Bauer, Gabrielle Roy, Donald Creighton, Thérèse Casgrain, Wilder Penfield, Arthur Lismer, M. J. Coldwell, Edwin Baker, Alex Colville, and Maurice Richard. During a visit to London, United Kingdom, later in 1967, Michener presented the Queen with her Sovereign's badge for the Order of Canada, which she first wore during a banquet in Yellowknife in July 1970.
From the Order of Canada grew a larger Canadian honours system, thereby reducing the use of British honours (i.e. those administered by the Queen in her British privy council). Among the civilian awards of the Canadian honours system, the Order of Canada comes third, after the Cross of Valour and membership in the Order of Merit, which is within the personal gift of Canada's monarch. By the 1980s, Canada's provinces began to develop their own distinct honours and decorations.
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