It is our custom to pay tribute to exceptional Montrealers who contribute to our city’s development and reputation.
Indeed, some will recall that CN began this tradition in 1978 with a gala honouring our Great Montrealers, which went on to become an annual event. In 1988, the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal took over the initiative by creating the Academy of Great Montrealers, which, until 2014, recognized over 130 personalities from the economic, cultural, social, and scientific sectors.
These academy members include Oliver Jones, one of Canada’s most well-known jazz pianists (2014, cultural sector); Lise Watier, a pioneer of Quebec’s entrepreneurial milieu and reigning queen of the cosmetics field (2013, economic sector); Gilles Julien, President and CEO of the renowned Fondation du Dr Julien (2010, social sector); and Hubert Reeves, scientist and talented popularizer of scientific knowledge (2007, scientific sector).
Today, at the dawn of a key moment in the history of our wonderful metropolis—its 375th anniversary—, the Academy of Great Montrealers is making way for the City’s all-new honorary award: the Ordre de Montréal. Each year, starting next spring, the Ordre de Montréal will pay tribute to 17 people who have helped shape the city in its various spheres of activity—culture, the economy, community life, science, and entrepreneurship.
Michel Leblanc, President and CEO of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal, Jacques Desbiens, Industrial Designer, and Denis Coderre, Mayor of Montreal, at the unveiling of the Ordre de Montréal medal
However, the City is not forgetting about the builders who have been recognized over the previous decades. To that end, academy members inducted by the Board of Trade will be officially admitted into the Ordre at a special ceremony in December 2016.
While awaiting this formal ceremony, the Board of Trade is encouraging the entire business community to nominate any individual deserving of such an honour. Why take part in the process? To further raise awareness of and be inspired by our city’s richness. Who knew that such figures as Oliver Jones and Hubert Reeves were so firmly rooted here in Montreal? There is no doubt that personalities like these help further the city’s reputation and influence beyond its borders, across the Canadian and international scenes.
You have until October 31 to send in your nominations!