Kelowna man formally awarded Order of Canada – Kelowna Information

Local in Order of Canada

Photo: Governor General of Canada / Facebook

David Ross Fitzpatrick (L) and Gov. General Mary Simon.

A Kelowna resident was formally invested in the Order of Canada, the nation’s highest civilian award, at a ceremony in Ottawa last week.

David Ross Fitzpatrick took part in a ceremony with Governor General Mary Simon at Rideau Hall on Dec. 14 where he was among 49 people awarded the order at officer rank. It was announced a year ago that he would be receiving the award.

Fitzpatrick was born in the Okanagan in 1933 and worked in the tree fruit industry, before going on to develop companies in aerospace, and resource extraction. He returned to the Okanagan in 1986 and founded CedarCreek Estate Winery, which he sold in 2014. He also served in the Senate of Canada from 1998 to 2008. He is now the proprietor and chairman of the Fitzpatrick Family Vineyards at Greata Ranch.

Fitzpatrick was awarded the Order of Canada “for his lifelong dedication to the cultural and economic development of the Okanagan, and for his leadership and conservation efforts in the region.”

He was also a powerful advocate for Indigenous economic independence in the region, noted for his negotiations of the Westbank First Nation Self-Government Agreement. Additionally, his deep commitment to conservation secured the protective rights of sacred Indigenous land, including Spotted Lake and in the South Okanagan-Similkameen area.

“These most recent nominees to the Order of Canada are shining examples of the commitment and outstanding contributions Canadians have made to the well-being of communities throughout this land, whether it be social, environmental, scientific, economic, cultural or related to mental and physical health,” said Mary Simon, Governor General of Canada.

The Order of Canada was created in 1967 to honour people whose service shapes society, whose innovations ignite our imaginations, and whose compassion unites communities.

with files from Nich Johansen

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