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Christopher McCreery

Photo: Michael Creagen 2016

Christopher McCreery, MVO, PhD, was born in Kingston Ontario in 1975. He attended both public and high school in Kingston and went on to complete a Bachelor of Arts in Canadian Politics and Canadian/Christopher McCreery, MVO, PhD, was born in Kingston Ontario in 1975. He attended both public and high school in Kingston and went on to complete a Bachelor of Arts in Canadian Politics and Canadian/British History at the University of Western Ontario’s Huron University College in 1998. Upon completion of his BA, McCreery accepted a Queen’s Fellowship and began working on his Master of Arts in Canadian history at Queen’s University. Completed in 1999, McCreery’s MA thesis, Questions of Honour; Canadian Government Policy Towards Titular Honours from Macdonald to Bennett (1867-1935), served as an important reference in Conrad Black’s lawsuit against the Government of Canada.

Immediately after finishing his MA, McCreery began his Doctorate, which he also undertook at Queen’s University, having been awarded the Colonel R.S. McLaughlin Fellowship. His thesis examined the invention of Canadian citizenship, the origins of multiculturalism and the basis of the modern Canadian honours system—defining the concept of “exemplary citizenship.” Honour, National and Citizenship in a Multicultural Policy: The Foundation of Canada’s Federal Honours System, was successfully defended in September 2003 and McCreery completed his doctoral thesis.

Concurrent with his doctoral work, McCreery wrote The Order of Canada: Its Origins, History and Development, the first full length academic work written about the history and development of not only the Order of Canada, but the entire Canadian honours system. A byproduct of this work was The Canadian Honours System, which is the first fully illustrated history of the modern Canadian honours system. He has served as an advisor to the British and various Canadian provincial governments on questions relating to honours. A second and greatly expanded edition of The Canadian Honours System, was released by Dundurn Press in late 2015.

From January 2004 to October 2006, McCreery worked as the Executive Assistant to Senator Michael Kirby in Ottawa. With the retirement of Senator Kirby in October 2006, McCreery was hired as Senior Policy Advisory to the Speaker of the Canadian Senate. From September 2007 until March 2009 he worked for the Privy Council Office as a Senior Advisor to the Leader of the Government in the Senate. In April 2009 McCreery took up the post of Private Secretary to the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia and Executive Director of Government House, Halifax. He is also the National Historian for St. John Ambulance/the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem in Canada.

His latest publications mark the fiftieth anniversary of the Order of Canada in 2017. The first, Fifty years Honouring Canadians: The Order of Canada, 1967-2017, with Foreword by Jean Vanier, CC, GOQ, provides a pictorial history of the Order of Canada and published by Dundurn Press. The second work, The Order of Canada: Genesis of an Honours System, is a second edition of The Order of Canada, which was released in 2005. Published by University of Toronto Press, with prefatory message from Her Majesty The Queen and Foreword by His Excellency the Governor General, this is the most comprehensive history of the Order of Canada and honours in Canada yet published. In conjunction with these two publications a new website www.OrderofCanada50.ca has been launched to provide a unique window into the history of one of our country’s higest honours.

Other forthcoming publications include a history of Government House Halifax and a biography of Esmond Butler, CVO, OC, the long serving Secretary to the Governor General of Canada.  

From 2009-2012 McCreery served as a member of the Federal Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Committee. In 2010 he was appointed by former Prime Minister Stephen Harper to serve as a member of the Governor General Expert Advisory Committee. The Committee was charged with assisting in the search for a new Governor General.

In 2011 McCreery was commissioned to undertake a comprehensive review of the Canadian Honours System for the Privy Council Office. This resulted in the report Preserving Prestige and Enhancing the Recognition of Excellence: A Review of the Canadian Honours System. In 2015 e was subsequently commissioned by the Department of Canadian Heritage to research and write a new protocol manual entitled The Canadian State Ceremonial and Protocol Manual. Since 2012 he has served as a Member of the Board of Trustees of the Canadian Museum of History & Canadain War Museum.

Christopher McCreery was appointed a Member of the Royal Victorian Order (MVO) by Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, during the 2010 Royal Tour and in 2010 he was also appointed an Officer of the Order of St. John.  He is a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society, the Royal Heraldry Society of Canada, the Queen’s University Centre for the Study of Democracy and the Canadian Numismatic Research Society.

Other memberships include the Writers Union of Canada, Canadian Historical Association, Champlain Society, Orders and Medals Research Society and the Orders and Medals Society of America.British History at the University of Western Ontario’s Huron University College in 1998. Upon completion of his BA, McCreery accepted a Queen’s Fellowship and began working on his Master of Arts in Canadian history at Queen’s University. Completed in 1999, McCreery’s MA thesis, Questions of Honour; Canadian Government Policy Towards Titular Honours from Macdonald to Bennett (1867-1935), served as an important reference in Conrad Black’s lawsuit against Prime Jean Chrétien. 
 
Immediately after finishing his MA, McCreery began his Doctorate, which he also undertook at Queen’s University, having been awarded the Colonel R.S. McLaughlin Fellowship. His thesis examined the invention of Canadian citizenship, the origins of multiculturalism and the basis of the modern Canadian honours system—defining the concept of “exemplary citizenship.” Honour, National and Citizenship in a Multicultural Policy: The Foundation of Canada’s Federal Honours System, was successfully defended in September 2003 and McCreery completed his doctoral thesis.  
Concurrent with his doctoral work, McCreery wrote The Order of Canada: Its Origins, History and Development, the first full length academic work written about the history and development of not only the Order of Canada, but the entire Canadian honours system. A byproduct of this work was The Canadian Honours System, which is the first fully illustrated history of the modern Canadian honours system. He has served as an advisor to the British and various Canadian provincial governments on questions relating to honours. 
 
The Order of Canada: Its Origins, History and Development is the first Canadian book in which Her Majesty The Queen has authored a prefatory message and one of the first in the Commonwealth.
 

From January 2004 to October 2006, McCreery worked as the Executive Assistant to Senator Michael Kirby in Ottawa. With the retirement of Senator Kirby in October 2006, McCreery was hired as Senior Policy Advisory to the Speaker of the Canadian Senate. From September 2007 until March 2009 he worked for the Privy Council Office as a Senior Advisor to the Leader of the Government in the Senate. In April 2009 McCreery took up the post of Private Secretary to the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia and Executive Director of Government House, Halifax. He is also the National Historian for the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem in Canada and has recently completed writing a history of the Order in Canada as part of St. John Ambulance’s 125th anniversary year.

His latest publication Commemorative Medals of The Queen’s Reign in Canada, 1952-2012. As part of the fortieth anniversary of the Order of Military Merit the Department of National Defence commissioned McCreery to write a history of that Order and The Order of Military Merit was launched in June 2012. Other forthcoming publications include a history of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Long Service Medal, a pictorial history of the Rideau Club and a history of Government House Halifax.

Since 2009 McCreery has served as a member of the Federal Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Committee. In 2010 he was appointed by Prime Minister Stephen Harper to serve as a member of the Governor General Expert Advisory Committee. The Committee was charged with assisting in the search for a new Governor General.

McCreery was appointed a Member of the Royal Victorian Order (MVO) by Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, during the 2010 Royal Tour. He is a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographic Society, The Queen’s University Centre for the Study of Democracy and the Canadian Numismatic Research Society.

In 2012 McCreery was appointed by the Governor-in-Council to the Board of Trustees of the Canadian Museum of Civilization.

Phone number:
902-429-4447

Publications

The Order of Canada: Genesis of an Honours System. University of Toronto Press, 2016
Fifty Years Honouring Canadians: The Order of Canada, 1967-2017. Dundurn Press, 2017
The Canadian Honours System, 2nd Edition. Dundurn Press, 2015
Savoir Faire, Savoir Vivre: Rideau Club, 1865-2015. Dundurn Press, 2014
Maintiens Le Droit: Recognizing Service, A History of the RCMP Long Service Medal. Royal Canadian Mounted Police, 2014
The Order of Military Merit. Government of Canada: Department of National Defence, 2012
Commemorative Medals of the Queen's Reign in Canada, 1952-2012. Dundurn Press, 2012
Canadian Symbols of Authority: Maces, Rods and Chains of Office. Dundurn Press, 2010
The Canadian Forces' Decoration. Government of Canada; Department of National Defence, 2010
The Maple Leaf and the White Cross: A History of St. John Ambulance in Canada. Dundurn Press, 2008
The Beginner's Guide to Canadian Honours. Dundurn Press, 2007
On Her Majesty's Service: Royal Honours and Recognition in Canada. Dundurn Press, 2007
The Order of Canada: Its Origins, History and Development. University of Toronto Press, 2005
The Canadian Honours System. Dundurn Press, 2005
Eligible for National Public Readings Program :
Yes

WITS

Northern OAC WITS:
No