Courtenay man ‘honoured’ to be among 78 appointed to Order of Canada

Courtenay man 'honoured' to be among 78 appointed to Order of Canada
Photo: Raymond Henault
Courtenay's Raymond Henault, the former chief of the defence staff, has been appointed to the Order of Canada. Dec. 28, 2023.

Two men with decorated careers and ties to Vancouver Island have something to celebrate after being awarded one of the country’s highest honours.

Raymond Henault of Courtenay and Steven Point of Chilliwack have been appointed to the Order of Canada, which “recognizes people across all sectors of society who have made extraordinary and sustained contributions to our nation,” states a Dec. 28 release.

Seventy-eight people, as recommended by an advisory council, were added to the Order on Thursday, including three companions, 15 officers, one honorary officer and 59 members.

Three appointments are promotions within the Order, which has been around since 1967, according to the announcement from Canada’s Governor General Mary Simon.

‘Absolutely delighted’

Retired Canadian Air Force operator Henault, who was the chief of the defence staff of Canada from 2001 to 2005 before serving as chairman of the NATO Military Committee until 2008, is recognized for “his long-time commitment — both in and out of uniform — to Canada’s defence and peacekeeping operations and policies.”

Henault says he’s just thrilled.

“I’m absolutely delighted. It was very nice news, especially to get it at this time of the year,” he told CHEK News.

“I’m honoured that the government would honour me. It’s a very nice thing, and it’s doubly nice because this year is the 100th anniversary of the Air Force.”

While Henault may be retired, his passion for planes lives on. He’s the current president of the Courtenay Airpark, and, in a statement, the airpark said its “members extend their sincere congratulations on this well-deserved honour.”

Henault wasn’t on the Island when he found out.

“My wife and I were on a safari in South Africa. It was difficult for them to get a hold of us initially,” he laughed. “We managed to correspond by email, and they confirmed that I was on the list, and I was absolutely delighted.”

Henault was appointed to the Order as a member, while Point was inducted as an officer.

The latter received an honorary degree from the University of Victoria in 2012 and, prior to that, served as Chief of the Skowkale First Nation from 1975 to 1999. Point was also B.C.’s first Indigenous lieutenant governor for five years, starting in 2007.

Now he’s the chancellor of the University of British Columbia, and was named to the Order thanks to “his dedicated commitment to reconciliation and esteemed leadership throughout his trailblazing career as a chief, judge and academic…” according to the release.

The list of new officers also includes Willie Adams, the first Inuit senator in Canada, guitar-maker Linda Manzer, editorial cartoonist Michael de Adder and pollster Nik Nanos. 

Media personality George Stroumboulopoulos was also inducted, and he says his years as a MuchMusic TV host are part of the reason for the honour.

“It was this golden era of television that I don’t think could ever be created again,” he told The Canadian Press in an interview.

Being promoted within the Order are former MP and senator Serge Joyal, former MP, Cree chief and lawyer Wilton Littlechild and Dr. Ronald Stewart, who is recognized for his contributions to emergency medicine.

Appointees will be invited to an investiture ceremony to receive their insignia, with “the dates of these ceremonies (to) be announced in due course,” states the release.

Gov. Gen Simon appointed the following people:


  • Serge Joyal
  • J. Wilton Littlechild
  • Ronald Daniel Stewart


  • Willie Adams
  • JosĂ©phine Bacon
  • Ian Burton
  • Richard Burzynski
  • William Arthur Stewart Buxton
  • Chang Keun (C.K.) Choi
  • Wenona Giles
  • RĂ©jean HĂ©bert
  • Richard Wayne Hill Sr.
  • Louise Imbeault
  • Firdaus Kharas
  • Linda Jane Manzer
  • Albert D. Marshall
  • Paul Myles O’Byrne
  • Peter Robb Pearson
  • Steven Lewis Point


  • Jodi Leanne Abbott
  • Yisa Folasele Akinbolaji
  • Sara Joy Angel
  • Antonio Ariganello
  • Nurjehan Aziz Vassanji
  • Glen Baker
  • Morris L. Barer
  • Anne Bassett
  • Ardyth Brott
  • Alfredo Caxaj
  • Susanne Craig
  • Patrick Gordon Crean
  • Michael de Adder
  • Raquel Zegarra del Carpio-O’Donovan
  • Debbie A. Douglas
  • Bronwyn D. A. Drainie
  • Deantha Rae Edmunds
  • Jeffrey Mark Farber
  • Deanne M. Fitzpatrick
  • Louis Hugo Francescutti
  • Patricia Sybil Pritchard Fraser
  • Tennys J. M. Hanson
  • Raymond Roland Henault
  • Lorne Henry Hepworth
  • Victor Peter Hetmanczuk
  • John Pearson Hirdes
  • Lillie Johnson
  • Timothy Robert Jones
  • Richard Kroeker
  • Gary Alan Kulesha
  • Carol Anne Lee
  • Francine Lemire
  • AndrĂ© Leon Lewis
  • Kim ThĂşy Ly Thanh
  • George Edward MacDonald
  • Susan Margaret Macpherson
  • Medhat Sabet Mahdy
  • Lois McDonall
  • Noella Maria Milne
  • Deborah McColl Money
  • Osama El-Sayed Moselhi
  • Nikita James Nanos
  • John Andrew Olthuis
  • Linda M. Perry
  • AndrĂ© Pierre Picard
  • Bruce Godfrey Pollock
  • Bryan Earl Prince
  • Shannon Beth Prince
  • Joel Andrew Quarrington
  • Arun Ravindran
  • James M. Richards
  • Martine Monique Roy
  • Lino A. Saputo
  • Joseph (Jim) Spatz
  • George Mark Paul Stroumboulopoulos
  • Maia-Mari Sutnik
  • David Kin-Kay
  • Zainub Verjee
  • Flavio Volpe

-with files from The Canadian Press

Ethan MorneauEthan Morneau

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