1. What is the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador?
The Order of Newfoundland and Labrador is the highest honour that the Province can bestow on its citizens. The object of the Order is to recognize individuals who have demonstrated excellence and achievement in any field of endeavour benefiting, in an outstanding manner, Newfoundland and Labrador and its residents. The Order was established in 2001 when the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador Act was given Royal Assent. The first investiture took place in 2004.
2. Who can nominate a person to receive the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador?
Nominations can be submitted by anyone who has knowledge of a person who is deserving of consideration to receive Newfoundland and Labrador’s highest form of recognition as a result of demonstrated excellence and achievement that has benefitted the Province and its residents.
3. Are all Newfoundlanders and Labradorians eligible for the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador?
Yes. The only exceptions are public officials such as judges, members of the Senate, House of Commons, House of Assembly or legislative assembly of a province and members of municipal, town, regional councils or local service district committees who may not be nominated while they are in office.
4. Can groups or organizations be nominated?
No. Only individuals can be nominated. Groups, couples, and organizations are not eligible for nomination.
5. Can citizens of other provinces or countries be appointed to the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador?
Yes. Citizens of other provinces or countries are eligible for honorary appointments. They may be considered for demonstrating excellence in their field of endeavour if it has benefited, in an outstanding manner, Newfoundland and Labrador and its residents.
6. Can someone be nominated posthumously?
No, only living Newfoundlanders and Labradorians can be nominated.
7. What happens when a person becomes a member of the Order?
The Lieutenant Governor and the Premier invite the new members to be honoured for their achievements in an investiture ceremony. At a formal ceremony, the Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland and Labrador, as Chancellor of the Order, will present each recipient with an insignia which bears the shield of Newfoundland and Labrador surmounted by the Crown. A member will receive a certificate signed by the Chancellor and sealed with the seal of the Order, as well as a miniature medal and a lapel pin. The insignia is suspended from a blue, green, white and gold ribbon. Members of the Order are entitled to use the distinguished initials O.N.L. after their names.
The Order of Newfoundland and Labrador is part of a precedence list recognized by Canadian Heritage Honours and Awards which includes the most prestigious honours in the country.
8. What is the symbolism in the Order’s Insignia?
The insignia of the Order is in the shape of a stylized pitcher plant (sarracenia purpurea Linnaeus), which was declared Newfoundland and Labrador’s floral emblem in 1954. The petals are of the provincial mineral, Labradorite. The insignia of the Order has at its centre the Arms of the Province, granted by King Charles I in January 1638. The Arms incorporate some of the most ancient heraldic symbols, the unicorn representing Scotland and the lion representing England. The gold elements of the insignia represent the excellence of achievement that the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador recognizes. The Crown is taken from the official standard of the Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland and Labrador, the Chancellor of the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador. It symbolizes honour and merit, and recalls Newfoundland and Labrador’s place as a province of Canada, a constitutional monarchy, and as part of the Commonwealth. The colours of the ribbon are those often used in provincial flags and ribbons:
- The green is evocative of the Province’s land and forests;
- The white represents the snow and ice that covers much of Newfoundland and Labrador in winter;
- The blue symbolizes the sea that has shaped so much of the Province’s heritage; and,
- The gold symbolizes the richness of the Province and its people.
9. Can a member resign or be terminated from the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador?
Yes. A member may resign by giving written notice of intention to resign to the Chancellor. The Chancellor may also terminate a person's membership in the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador, on the recommendation of the Advisory Council.
10. Is there an annual deadline for nominations?
There is a deadline for nominations that is set annually and publicly communicated however, nominations may be received at any time during the year and will remain active for three consecutive considerations by the Advisory Council. Nominators may update the nominee’s file on an annual basis, prior to each year’s deadline.
11. Where can I obtain further information?
Further information can be obtained from:
Provincial Protocol Office
P.O. Box 5517
St. John's, NL A1C 5W4
Tel: (709) 729-3670
Fax: (709) 729-2234