Actor and filmmaker Sarah Polley, Blue Rodeo's Jim Cuddy and Greg Keelor, and retired Supreme Court of Canada justice Marie Deschamps are among the latest Canadians named to the Order of Canada.

Gov. Gen. David Johnston unveiled on Monday the 90 new appointments to one of Canada's highest civilian honours.

The Order recognizes outstanding achievement, dedication to the community and service to the nation.

During the past 45 years, more than 6,000 people from different sectors have been honoured for their contributions to Canadian society.

Montrealer Deschamps, who retired from the Supreme Court in 2012, is among the four new companions, the Order's highest level. She is joined by:

  • Donald Mazankowski (Sherwood Park, Alta.), former Conservative cabinet minister under former prime ministers Joe Clark and Brian Mulroney.
  • Margaret McCain, New Brunswick's first female lieutenant-governor and philanthropist, now based in Toronto.
  • Contemporary composer, music educator and environmentalist R. Murray Schafer (Indian River, Ont.).

Blue Rodeo's Jim Cuddy, left, and Greg Keelor were named officers of the Order of Canada 'for their contributions to Canadian music and their support of various charitable causes.' (Frank Gunn/Canadian Press)

Arts figures, philanthropists, activists, scholars and scientists abound in the list.

Veteran Toronto rockers Cuddy and Keelor, and former child star Polley (also of Toronto) are among those named new officers of the Order. Others include:

  • Author and visual artist Douglas Coupland (Vancouver).
  • Stage and screen actor Colm Feore (Stratford, Ont.).
  • Daniel Ish (Saskatoon), former chief adjudicator of the Indian Residential Schools Adjudication Secretariat.
  • Journalist and broadcaster Steve Paikin (Toronto).
  • Designers Glenn Pushelberg and George Yabu (Toronto).
  • Stem cell scientist Michael Rudnicki (Ottawa).
  • Environmental engineer Daniel Walter Smith (Edmonton).

Fashion broadcaster Jeanne Beker (Toronto), bestselling crime writer Louise Penny (Sutton, Que.), and Sobeys Inc. founder and arts philanthropist Donald Sobey are three of the newest Order of Canada members. Others include:

  • Family physician Dr. Ewan Affleck, a northern communities medical outreach specialist based in Yellowknife.
  • Montreal composer and conductor Walter Boudreau.
  • Choreographer, dancer and director Denise Clarke (Calgary).
  • Construction executive and entrepreneurial champion Marc Dutil (Saint-Georges-de-Beauce, Que.).
  • Jazz musician and composer Phil Dwyer (Qualicum Beach, B.C.).
  • Community medical specialist and HIV researcher Catherine Hankins (Sutton, Que., and Amsterdam).
  • Retired Banff Centre CEO Mary Hofstetter (Stratford, Ont., and Banff, Alta.).
  • Inuit artist Elisapee Ishulutaq (Pangnirtung, Nunavut).
  • Vancouver philanthropist Djavad Mowafaghian.
  • Actor, director and Soulpepper Theatre Company director Albert Schultz (Toronto).
  • Cancer research scientist Ian Tannock (Toronto).
  • Sports journalist Marie-José Turcotte (Montreal).

These latest honourees will be presented with their insignias and officially invested into the Order of Canada at a later date, most likely during one of several investiture ceremonies held each year at Rideau Hall.

Order of Canada facts:

  • The Order of Canada insignia is a stylized snowflake with six points. A red circle at the centre contains a maple leaf and the Order motto: Desiderantes meliorem patriam  (They desire a better country). The circle is topped by St. Edward's crown.
  • The Order has 3 levels. Companion status (C.C.) reflects recognizes national pre-eminence or international service or achievement. Officer status (O.C.) recognizes national service or achievement. Member status (C.M.) recognizes outstanding contributions at the local or regional level or in a special field of activity.
  • Officers and members can be elevated within the Order in recognition of further achievement.
  • All living Canadians are eligible, except federal and provincial politicians and judges while still in office.
  • Non-Canadians can be considered for honorary appointments.
  • Any person or group can nominate an individual for the Order.
  • The Advisory Council for the Order of Canada, a diverse group chaired by the chief justice of the Supreme Court, selects recipients twice a year.