VICTORIA - Twelve distinguished British Columbians were honoured today for their dedicated service to the province as they received the 2012 Order of B.C. during an investiture ceremony at Government House.
“The Order of B.C. is the Province’s way of acknowledging the tireless work recipients devote every day to the people of British Columbia,” said Lieutenant-Governor Steven Point, Chancellor of the Order. “I’m so proud to share this day with 12 of our brightest stars.”
“The Order of BC recipients invested today are examples of remarkable individuals who have contributed to improving the quality of life for British Columbians,” said Premier Christy Clark. “On behalf of all British Columbians, I’m proud to honour each recipient and thank them for exceptional contributions to our province.”
The Order of B.C., established in 1989, is the highest form of recognition the Province can bestow on its citizens and is awarded annually to those who have demonstrated outstanding distinction and achievement in any field. Since its introduction, 331 people have received this honour.
The 2012 recipients are:
- David Barrett of Victoria - elected leader and one of the modern B.C. architects.
- Sister Nancy Brown of Vancouver - advocate for homeless and vulnerable young people.
- The Right Honourable A. Kim Campbell, P.C., C.C., Q.C. formerly of Vancouver - elected leader and trailblazer for women.
- Dr. Peter L. Cooperberg of Vancouver - world leader in the medical use of ultrasound.
- Christopher Gaze of Vancouver - cultural leader and founder of the Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival.
- Rick Harry (Xwalacktun) of West Vancouver - internationally renowned artist, teacher and link between First Nations and other British Columbians.
- Norman B. Keevil of Vancouver - mining industry pioneer, entrepreneur and philanthropist.
- Hassan Khosrowshahi of Vancouver - entrepreneur, builder and generous supporter of community organizations.
- Marion Lay of Vancouver - world-class swimmer, sport leader and inspiration for women athletes.
- Carol Matthews of Nanaimo - community leader, educator and tireless voice for social justice.
- Djavad Mowafaghian of North Vancouver - business leader, builder and philanthropist.
- James E. Ogilvie of Kimberley - innovative community leader.
- Tricia C.M. Smith, C.M. of Vancouver - world-class athlete, sport leader and example for B.C. women.
- Dr. Robert B. Thirsk formerly of New Westminster - astronaut, mechanical engineer, physician and role model.
Two recipients, David Barrett and Christopher Gaze, were unable to attend the ceremony. Both will be invested at ceremonies in the near future.
Order of B.C.: http://www.orderofbc.gov.bc.ca/
Intergovernmental Relations Secretariat
2012 Order of B.C. recipient profiles
David Barrett (not in attendance)
Mr. Dave Barrett is one of the chief architects of British Columbia as we know it today. Some of the great institutions that make our province unique - PharmaCare, the Agricultural Land Reserve and ICBC, for example - exist thanks to his leadership. He created Canada’s first guaranteed income program for seniors, in addition to a provincewide ambulance service, question period in the Legislature, Hansard and full-time Members of the Legislature.
Mr. Barrett accomplished all of this in just three years as Premier, from 1972 to 1975.
Born in Vancouver in 1930, Mr. Barrett was a child of the Great Depression, growing up in a politically active, working class family. It was not long before he was challenging the system and proposing a better way.
Mr. Barrett’s legacy to future generations is the equal to that of Premiers who served for decades. First elected to the B.C. Legislature while still in his twenties, he was British Columbia’s first New Democrat Premier - at the age of 41 - and also served as a Member of Parliament in Ottawa.
Courageous, fearless, funny, dynamic and inspirational, Mr. Barrett believed that government has a moral obligation to care for our most vulnerable and ensure equality. His exceptional ability as a public speaker, his quick wit and his plain-spoken style enabled him to forge a strong connection with British Columbians.
Sister Nancy Brown
Sister Nancy Brown is a tireless advocate for the most vulnerable in British Columbia: homeless youth and young people at risk for human trafficking and sexual exploitation.
Having grown up in a respected Vancouver family that believes in giving back to the community, Sister Nancy has spent most of her life doing just that. She works with homeless youth in her position as Pastoral Counsellor and Ombudsperson at Covenant House Vancouver. Many of these young people are fleeing abusive home situations, living in poverty and suffering from addictions and mental illness.
Before joining Covenant House, Sister Nancy spent five years volunteering at a women’s shelter. This inspired her to earn certificates in addictions counselling and working with abused young women, as well as those who have been abusing women.
Since then, she has taken a leadership role in fighting sexual exploitation and human trafficking over 13 years working for Covenant House.
Sister Nancy works directly with young people on the street, while also serving on numerous committees focused on preventing youth homelessness and the exploitation of women and children. She has raised the profile of these issues, highlighting the very real danger of youth exploitation and trafficking.
Working tirelessly to help vulnerable young people, Sister Nancy has consistently demonstrated her dedication and passion for peace, social justice and non-violence.
The Right Honourable Avril Kim Campbell
The Right Honourable Kim Campbell is an extraordinary British Columbian who has served her province and her country with distinction. From the age of 16 - when she became her school’s first-ever female student-body president - to 30 years later - when she became Canada’s first female Prime Minister - Ms. Campbell has spent much of her life breaking barriers.
She was Canada’s first female Justice Minister and Attorney General, the first female Defence Minister - not only in Canada, but of any NATO country - the first Prime Minister born and raised in British Columbia and the first former Canadian Prime Minister to serve as a diplomat after leaving office.
Ms. Campbell has served at all three levels of government, starting with her election to the Vancouver School Board in 1980. She was elected to the British Columbia legislature in 1986 and then Canada’s House of Commons in 1988. She served in the federal War Cabinet during the first Gulf War, and as Justice Minister, she responded decisively to the “Montreal Massacre,” implementing tighter gun controls. She also introduced groundbreaking changes to strengthen women’s protection from sexual assault.
Ms. Campbell became leader of the Progressive Conservative Party in 1993, serving as Prime Minister until the federal election later that year.
Since leaving politics, Ms. Campbell has worked on global issues, serving as Canadian Consul General in Los Angeles and pursuing initiatives to better Canada and the world. She has been awarded nine honorary degrees.
Dr. Peter Cooperberg
Dr. Peter Cooperberg is a pioneer in ultrasound imaging - a world leader in the use of ultrasound in medical diagnosis.
Dr. Cooperberg has authored 220 scientific publications and played a key role in the education of most of British Columbia’s radiologists and many others worldwide.
Dr. Cooperberg has served in a leadership role in radiology at UBC’s Faculty of Medicine since 1975. Equipped with a Bachelor of Life Science from MIT and an MD from McGill University, Dr. Cooperberg’s training, expertise and energy uniquely qualified him to advance the use of ultrasound.
The rise of ultrasound imaging from static scanning to observing and imaging “real-time” is largely due to Dr. Cooperberg’s efforts. For many years, he trained fellows from around the world, helping them learn the technology’s full potential, sharing his infectious enthusiasm for the field.
In 1983, Dr. Cooperberg co-founded the “Practical Radiology at Whistler” conference, which combines the latest radiology education with time spent in spectacular British Columbia. The annual conference attracts large numbers of radiologists from around the world, bringing international recognition to UBC’s Department of Radiology.
Dr. Cooperberg’s innovation, teaching, research and clinical care are exemplary and his dedication to his field has benefitted all British Columbians. In recognition of his major contributions to ultrasound, UBC has initiated the Peter L. Cooperberg Annual Lecture.
Mr. Christopher Gaze (not in attendance)
Mr. Christopher Gaze has elevated the cultural standard of Vancouver, the Lower Mainland and all of British Columbia. The founder and artistic director of Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival in Vancouver, Mr. Gaze is leading the Festival into its 23rd season.
More than 90,000 people from Canada, the United States and beyond attend Bard on the Beach each season. The Festival is a $4 million annual operation, contributing significantly to British Columbia’s arts sector employment and our economy.
Mr. Gaze has provided a strong focus on the actors and audiences of the future. He created Young Shakespeare Acting Program Workshops, allowing more than 275 young people to train each summer with seasoned professionals on the Bard stages. The Festival also developed its Student Matinee Series, which introduces more than 10,000 students each year to the magic of Shakespeare’s stories and language.
Mr. Gaze hosts 20 concerts each year with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and sits on a variety of boards including Chor Leoni Men’s Choir and the Health Arts Society. He has received prestigious honours from the B.C. Entertainment Hall of Fame, Canada’s Meritorious Service Medal, Honorary Doctorates from SFU and UBC, the B.C. Community Achievement Award, the 2007 Gold Medal Medallion from the Children’s Foundation of America and the 2011 Mayor’s Arts Award for Theatre.
Mr. Rick Harry (Xwalacktun)
Mr. Rick Harry (Xwalacktun) has produced a prodigious body of artwork and an enduring legacy of goodwill. A highly skilled artist and teacher, Mr. Harry has made healing, growth, respect and giving back to the community central themes in his life.
Born and raised in Squamish, Mr. Harry was educated at Emily Carr College of Art and Capilano College before embarking on a 30-year career as an internationally recognized artist and cultural ambassador. He works in wood, glass and steel and is best known for his remarkable wood carvings.
Mr. Harry’s carvings can be seen in high-profile locations in the Lower Mainland. These are among more than 80 pieces he has carved for schools and other institutions throughout B.C. and around the world. Mr. Harry was the first Aboriginal artist chosen to receive a licence to produce 2010 Olympics-related designs.
With influence extending well beyond B.C.’s borders, Mr. Harry has been commissioned by galleries in New York and New Hampshire to produce carvings. He has been featured on high-profile television programs, including Sesame Street, and has - for a decade - conducted totem carving classes in Scotland, helping people there preserve their own heritage.
Over the years, Mr. Harry has become a highly acclaimed artist, a link between the Squamish Nation and other communities, and a great representative of British Columbia.
Dr. Norman Keevil
Dr. Norman Keevil is a mining industry pioneer, entrepreneur, builder and philanthropist. Recognized as a mining leader and a man of great personal integrity, Dr. Keevil has championed responsible mining practices internationally.
Teck is one of Canada’s oldest continuously operating resource companies and its growth over the past five decades is in large part due to Dr. Keevil’s efforts.
Under Dr. Keevil’s leadership, Teck has grown into a major integrated resource company, with almost $30 billion in assets. The company has built mines in British Columbia, the Yukon, Ontario, Quebec, and Newfoundland as well as in Chile, Peru and the United States.
In addition to helping to build Teck, Dr. Keevil has donated generously to educational institutions and made a significant contribution to the development of the Mining Association of Canada’s Environmental Policy while serving as its Chairman. Teck has also made major contributions to BC Children’s Hospital, the University of Alberta, and the Royal Ontario Museum.
Dr. Keevil was recently named to the prestigious Canadian Business Hall of Fame. He has been inaugurated into the Mining Hall of Fame, named Canadian International Business Leader of the Year and received the T. Patrick Boyle Founder's Award from the Fraser Institute, among other honours and awards, including an Honorary Doctorate of Laws from the University of British Columbia.
Mr. Hassan Khosrowshahi
Mr. Hassan Khosrowshahi personifies the ‘great Canadian dream.’
Mr. Khosrowshahi came to British Columbia from Iran and achieved great business success in his new home. He and his family founded the Inwest Group of Companies, focusing initially on retailing and real estate and then on pharmaceutical and entertainment industries.
The Future Shop, one of Canada’s great retail success stories, was an Inwest company until it was sold in 2001.
Mr. Khosrowshahi’s companies develop, hold and manage real estate, including land, resorts, shopping centres and apartment buildings. They are world leaders in managing funds that purchase royalties from pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, research institutions, and universities. The group also acquires, owns and administers music copyrights.
Mr. Khosrowshahi is far more than a highly successful business person, as he and his family have been generous supporters of community organizations such as Street-to-Home, Share Family and Community Services, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and the Vancouver General Hospital Foundation.
He has served as the Chairman of the Fraser Institute, a member of the Executive Committee of the B.C. Business Council, a member of the board of the Smithsonian’s Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, and B.C. Chair of the Governor General’s Leadership Council. He is a member of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives, and sits on the board of the Leading Edge Endowment Fund.
Ms. Marion Lay
Ms. Marion lay has been a major force behind the growth, development and success of Canadian women in sport.
After capping her athletic career with a bronze medal in swimming at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics, Ms. Lay directed her considerable energies to promoting physical activity for women at every level.
Ms. Lay was responsible for developing Canada’s first policy and statistical paper on women and sport and the first Women’s High Performance Funding Plan. She has worked to ensure equitable funding for women in sport and has served as a special advisor to Sport Canada, responsible for the Women in Sport program.
She was a founding member of the Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women in Sports and Physical Activity, and ProMotion Plus, the BC Organization for Girls and Women in Physical Activity and Sport.
Ms. Lay was sport director for Expo 86 and the Vancouver Centennial Committee, President of Operations for the Rick Hansen Man in Motion World Tour, Co-Chair of the BC Games Society and a Board Member for the BC Sports Hall of Fame. She chaired the Vancouver 2010 Bid Corporation and served on the 2010 Vancouver Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games board. She was founding President and CEO of 2010 Legacies Now.
Commanding global respect for her work, Ms. Lay has been honoured with numerous awards including the International Olympic Committees Trophy for the Americas for her outstanding contribution to Women in Sport. Ms. Lay is a creative, tenacious, hard-working visionary.
Mrs. Carol Matthews
For 45 years, Mrs. Carol Matthews has been a model of excellence in leadership, nurturing others as a community leader, educator, writer, researcher and advocate for the arts and non-profit sectors.
Mrs. Matthews is an iconic figure in the landscape of Nanaimo-area non-profit agencies. She has been a voice for social justice and those most vulnerable.
After starting her career as a social worker, Mrs. Matthews became Executive Director of the Nanaimo Family Life Association and then a college instructor and dean and is currently an honorary research associate at Vancouver Island University. As a consultant and a volunteer, she has assisted community organizations, government departments and educational institutions with strategic planning, facilitating vision and mission creation, leadership development, change management, team building and problem solving.
Mrs. Matthews’ greatest achievement is leading with compassion and teaching others how to provide leadership in their organizations.
A colleague once joked that she was so busy on projects she believed in at Malaspina University-College (now Vancouver Island University), the Nanaimo Port Authority, her writers’ group, KIDS International and other community activities, that she should start a club called “starters anonymous,” focused on helping people like her who cannot resist acting on good ideas.
In 1979, she was awarded the BC Year of the Child and Family Award, in 1999, the ACCC National Award for Excellence in Leadership and in 2009, she received an Honorary Doctorate from Vancouver Island University.
Dr. Djavad Mowafaghian
Dr. Djavad Mowafaghian has a long history of philanthropic giving, making a tremendous positive impact on the lives of children and families in British Columbia and around the world.
After moving to our province in 1986, Dr. Mowafaghian founded V1500 Holdings, a B.C. real estate investment and development company. Highly successful in business, Dr. Mowafaghian has given back to his adopted country and the larger world through 25 years of generous donations.
In 2003, he created and funded the Djavad Mowafaghian Foundation to ensure the continuation of his philanthropy. Recently, he moved all of V1500 Holding Inc.’s building assets into the Foundation, demonstrating his selfless nature.
Dr. Mowafaghian has given more than $45 million to health and education in B.C., including a $6 million contribution to BC Children’s Hospital Foundation - the largest donation ever made to the hospital by an individual. He has also supported other major initiatives at the hospital, including a $4 million pledge in support of the campaign to build a new BC Children’s Hospital.
Among his many other donations, Dr. Mowafaghian has supported the Centre for Child Development Foundation, Free the Children, Surrey Fire Fighters Charitable Society, Coast Mental Health, Junior Achievement of BC, Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation and Arts Umbrella. He has made major gifts to Simon Fraser University and the University of B.C.
Most recently, he provided a substantial gift to support the construction of the new UBC Brain Health Centre.
Mr. James Ogilvie
Mr. Jim Ogilvie has dedicated most of his life to community service in the Kimberley area.
First elected to public office in 1965, Mr. Ogilvie was one of Kimberley’s original Aldermen, a position he held until his 1972 election as Mayor. With a break of only three years, he continued in that position, serving 36 years as Mayor.
During this period, Kimberley grew and changed, becoming a tourism and lifestyle centre. In 1986, the City took responsibility for Kimberley Ski Resort and later developed the outstanding Trickle Creek Golf Resort. The City later sold the resorts and other development properties, which led to abundant new development in the city.
Kimberley flourished under Mr. Ogilvie’s guidance, with innovative municipal developments such as Bootleg Gap Golf Course, the Rails to Trails project and Kimberley Conference and Athlete Training Centre. He has made contributions at the regional and provincial level, serving in leadership positions on the Regional District Board, the executive of the Union of B.C. Municipalities and numerous task forces, commissions, boards and committees.
Mr. Ogilvie has been instrumental in guiding Kimberley toward economic independence and continued prosperity, with a sought-after lifestyle, rich with recreational opportunities, beautiful scenery and a healthy, safe environment. Mr. Ogilvie has influenced the lives - in a positive way - of everyone lucky enough to call Kimberley home.
Ms. Tricia Smith
Ms. Tricia Smith is a role model for B.C. women, having successfully pursued her passion to become a successful elite athlete, an international sport and sport-law administrator as well as a dedicated volunteer.
Ms. Smith excelled at rowing, and was a member of four Olympic teams, winning a gold medal at the 1986 Commonwealth Games, silver at the 1984 Olympics and seven world championship medals.
She is currently a member of the International Council of Arbitration for Sport, senior Vice President of the Canadian Olympic Committee, a member of the Executive Committee of the International Rowing Federation and was a founding member of the B.C. Advisory Council on Drugs and Sport. She was the first female board chair of Sport B.C. and served as co-Mayor of Vancouver’s Olympic Village.
Ms. Smith was selected as Canada’s Chef de Mission for the 2007 Pan American Games, and among other awards has received the President’s Award from Rowing Canada and was inducted into the BC Sports Hall of Fame and the Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame. She received the Order of Canada in November 2011.
Called to the Bar in 1986, Ms. Smith is now a partner and Deputy Managing Director at Barnes Craig & Associates, an adjusting and risk management firm.
Ms. Smith has faced considerable family tragedy but always credits her family and upbringing for her strength, perseverance and positive approach in sport, education and all she does in life.
Dr. Robert Thirsk
Dr. Robert Thirsk has been an outstanding contributor to British Columbia, Canada and the world, achieving remarkable accomplishments and making our province proud.
Dr. Thirsk was a Grade 3 student in Powell River when he first learned about the wonders of spaceflight. He became fascinated and decided to become an astronaut. After earning degrees in mechanical engineering and medicine, Dr. Thirsk got his chance in 1983, when he was one of six successful applicants to the Canadian Astronaut Program, out of 4,000.
Dr. Thirsk pursued astronaut training, including time at the University of Victoria to enhance his medical skills, conduct engineering research and learn the Russian language. He also found time to earn a Master of Business Administration from MIT.
Dr. Thirsk’s first space flight was aboard the Space Shuttle Columbia in 1996. In 2009, he spent six months aboard the International Space Station. On both missions, Dr. Thirsk performed leading-edge research, including experiments from Simon Fraser University.
Throughout his career, Dr. Thirsk has been a strong role model for youth. He has helped develop space-related curricula for schools, visited universities to discuss his work, and conducted live downlink interviews with students while in space.
He enthusiastically profiles the work of B.C. Aboriginal artists in the space program, including the mission patches for both of his space missions.
Intergovernmental Relations Secretariat