Three residents in the Capital Regional District have been appointed to the Order of British Columbia, the highest form of recognition in the province.
Patricia Carney of Saturna Island and Murray and Lynda Farmer of North Saanich are among the 15 people appointed. This year also marks the 30th anniversary of the establishment of the order.
“I am so pleased to share congratulations with the inspiring individuals joining the Order of British Columbia this year. These exceptional recipients are pillars of our communities, who have demonstrated excellence and distinction in their fields,” said Lt.-Gov. Janet Austin, chancellor of the order. “I wish to extend my thanks to all new members for their commitment to meaningful work that leaves a lasting legacy, which benefits and elevates our province for future generations.”
Patricia Carney broke new ground in journalism and Canadian politics, advancing the causes of equality and women’s rights as well as Indigenous and minority rights.
She was the first woman in each federal government cabinet post she held. She also brought together B.C. members of parliament to form the British Columbia Caucus, helping B.C. and Yukon achieve recognition as the fifth region of Canada.
Carney negotiated multilateral treaties, ensured sustainability of B.C.’s resource sectors and joined missions to heighten the provincial profile in Asia-Pacific relations. She also initiated the first task force to reduce barriers to women in the public service.
As a member of the Senate of Canada for 18 years, Carney chaired the energy and environment committee, was vice-chair of the foreign affairs and international trade committee and was a member of the Aboriginal and fisheries committee.
However, Carney’s first love was journalism. She worked as a business columnist for the Province and Vancouver Sun newspapers in the 1960s.
Additionally, Carney is a founding director of Arthritis Research Canada, advocating treatment and rehabilitation for people with arthritis.
Murray and Lynda Farmer have enhanced B.C. as a place to study, live, work and visit and have set an example for community involvement as philanthropists, volunteers and leaders.
Murray served on the University of Victoria board of governors as chair and served two terms as university chancellor. Lynda served on the Camosun College Foundation and the college’s board of governors including as its chair.
The couple established the Lynda and Murray Farmer Walk of Excellence to honour former University of Victoria athletes and coaches. As co-chairs of the Camosun College Foundation Trademark of Excellence Fundraising Campaign, the college’s Centre for Trades Education and Innovation was made possible.
Murray and Lynda led fundraising for the Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea and Lynda assisted in the establishment of the Mary Winspear Centre in Sidney.
The Farmers also helped expand the Victoria Foundation, attracting new donors and establishing a fund in their name that provides annual grants for community projects.
Since its inception, 447 British Columbians have been appointed to the Order of British Columbia from all regions of the province. This year, 209 people were nominated.
The Order of British Columbia investiture ceremony will be held for recipients and invited guests at Government House on June 28.