Historic moment in the city's history - Great Montrealers received the Ordre de Montréal

MONTRÉAL, Dec. 17, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - As part of a special ceremony which took place in the council chamber of city hall, the Mayor of Montréal, Denis Coderre, welcomed to the Ordre de Montréal the personalities of exception who were awarded the title of Great Montrealer over the past years. Attending this prestigious and solemn ceremony was Michel Leblanc, President and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal.

The Ordre de Montréal, which is the city's highest honourary distinction, pays tribute to exceptional men and women who contribute in a remarkable way to the development and reputation of the city. It is a symbol of recognition specific to the metropolis of Québec, which also reflects the city's national and international status.

"I am extremely proud to welcome as the first recipients of the Ordre de Montréal the eminent members of the Academy of Great Montrealers who, each in their own way, have distinguished themselves in an admirable way. The Great Montrealers will always remain the first members of the Ordre de Montréal, and their contribution will remain forever etched in our collective memory. I would like to thank the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal, which instigated the Academy of Great Montrealers, for this great heritage that was passed on Montrealers," said Mayor Coderre.

"I am pleased that Montréal created an honourary distinction such as the Ordre de Montréal to mark the city's 375th anniversary. This is a remarkable way of recognizing and highlighting the achievements of citizens who have marked community life. As a Co-chair of the Ordre de Montréal council, along with Bernard Voyer, I am honoured to welcome to the Ordre de Montréal the members of the Academy of Great Montrealers," said Louise Arbour.

The Chamber of Commerce is pleased that the members of the Academy of Great Montrealers today are given the highest rank of commandeur-commandeure. To honour people of talent who distinguish themselves through their contribution to the development and reputation of our city is a tradition that has been well established in Montréal for almost 40 years. After the Canadian National and the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal, it is now Montréal's turn to continue the tradition and celebrate exceptional local personalities who serve as an inspiration and are a source of pride to all of us," said Michel Leblanc.

This noble and prestigious event, which is part of the launching of the festivities surrounding Montréal's 375th anniversary celebrations, was charged with emotions, as each Great Montrealer in attendance was given the Ordre de Montréal with the rank of commandeur-commandeure. This is the highest of the here ranks awarded by the institution.  

The recipients attending the ceremony included: Ms. Lise Bissonnette, Mr. Georges Brossard, Mr. Denis Brott, Mr. Claude Castonguay, Ms. Gretta Chambers, Ms. Hélène Desmarais, Mr. Pierre Fortin, Sister Nicole Fournier, Mr. Phil Gold,  Dr. Pavel Hamet, Mr. Peter Howlett, Ms. Andrée Lachapelle, Mr. Jacques Lamarre,  Ms. Phyllis Lambert, Dr. Yves Lamontagne, Mr. Guy R. Legault, Dr. M. Pierre Legault, Ms. Antonine Maillet, Mr. L. Jacques Ménard, Mr. Albert Millaire, Dr. Henry Mintzberg, Mr. Claude Montmarquette, Mr. Kent Nagano, Ms. Julie Payette, Mr. Henri-Paul Rousseau, Mr. Alain Simard, Ms. Michèle Thibodeau-DeGuire, and Dr. Réjean Thomas.

Also, Ms Arlette Cousture was represented by Mr. Michel Corriveau, Ms Denise Filiatrault by Ms Danièle Lorrain, Father Emmett Johns by Ms Cécile Arbaut, and Mr. Guy Laliberté by Mr. François Plamondon.

About the Ordre de Montréal
The Ordre de Montréal was created on May 17, 2016, as a legacy of Montréal's 375th anniversary. Drawing on age-old traditions, the Ordre de Montréal seeks to recognize the talent and achievements of men and women who help shape the city. Through this act of transfer, the Ordre de Montréal officially takes over from the Academy of Great Montrealers, which was created in 1988 by the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal, and which itself had taken over an initiative by the Canadian National in 1978.

The Ordre de Montréal medal is part of the city's official symbols, in the same way as the city flag and coat of arms. Like most honourary orders, the Ordre de Montréal medal is presented as an elegant family of insignias, whose material and size vary according to rank. The medal was designed by Jacques Desbiens, industrial designer and winner of the first prize following the call for creation of the Ordre de Montréal medal, which was launched in 2015 by the city's Bureau du design. 

For more information on the Ordre de Montréal or to consult the complete list of Great Montrealers who were awarded the Ordre, please visit ville.montreal.qc.ca/ordre.

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SOURCE Ville de Montréal - Cabinet du maire et du comité exécutif

For further information: Source: Marc-André Gosselin, Attaché de presse, Office of the Mayor and Executive Committee, 514 290-1194; Information: François Goneau , Relationniste, Service des communications , 514 868-5859

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