Official Anniversary Book Release

February 17, 2017

Official Release of Order of Canada
50th Anniversary Book

OTTAWA—Today, They Desire a Better Country: The Order of Canada in 50 Stories—a commemorative book celebrating the 50th anniversary of the creation of the Order of Canada—was officially released. This was done in conjunction with this year’s first Order of Canada investiture ceremony at Rideau Hall.

“Like the Order of Canada itself, the individuals featured in this 50th anniversary book are a force for good in our country,” said His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada. “They make me proud to be Canadian and hopeful for the future.”

This collection of inspiring stories, featuring stunning photography, showcases some of the remarkable individuals who have earned this honour and proudly wear the snowflake insignia: among them, astronaut Chris A. Hadfield, writer Lawrence Hill, artist Susan Aglukark, visionary Guy Laliberté and hockey player Hayley Wickenheiser.

They Desire a Better Country: The Order of Canada in 50 Stories was written by Lawrence Scanlan; translated into French by Daniel Poliquin, himself an Officer of the Order; and is published by Figure 1. The book was made possible through the work and involvement of members of the Order of Canada.

The book will be available nationwide on February 20, 2017. It will be given to every living member of the Order, as well as donated to high schools and library systems across the country. For more information about the book, visit

About the Order of Canada

Created in 1967, the Order of Canada, one of our country’s highest civilian honours, recognizes outstanding achievement, dedication to the community and service to the nation. Close to 7 000 people from all sectors of society have been invested into the Order. Their contributions are varied, yet they have all enriched the lives of others and have taken to heart the motto of the Order: DESIDERANTES MELIOREM PATRIAM (“They desire a better country”). Appointments are made by the governor general on the recommendation of the Advisory Council for the Order of Canada.

About the 50th Anniversary of the Order of Canada

Throughout the year, the Order of Canada’s 50th anniversary will be celebrated through a host of special initiatives and partnerships, such as The Walrus Talks Conversations About Canada: We Desire a Better Country, a national tour running from March 1 to May 31, 2017. To join the celebration, visit and use the hashtag #OC50.


Media information about the Order of Canada

Marie-Pierre Bélanger
Rideau Hall Press Office
613-852-3248 (cell)

Media information about the book

Fleur Matthewson
Raincoast Books

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