Lieutenant Governor Russ Mirasty announced today the eight newest recipients of the Saskatchewan Order of Merit, the province’s highest honour. The list includes John Hopkins, the former CEO of the Regina & District Chamber of Commerce.
These remarkable individuals will be invested at a ceremony in September.
“This group of recipients has shown an extraordinary commitment to making the Province of Saskatchewan a better place for everyone,” said Mirasty. “I congratulate each of these exceptional individuals and I thank them for the positive impact they have made on our province and its people.”
Having overcome a battle with addiction early in life, John Hopkins went on to complete university and become a champion of business, mental health, and reconciliation in Regina.
John started as a summer student at Regina Downtown Business Improvement District in 1995. He rose through the ranks and became the Chief Executive Officer of Regina & District Chamber of Commerce. In this role, John worked with governments of all political stripes and provided reasoned and compassionate advocacy for the issues of the day.
He participated on numerous boards and committees such as the Canadian Forces Liaison Council, Saskatchewan Assessment Management Association Commercial Advisory Committee, and the City of Regina Transit Advisory Board. John was a founding member of the Regina Trades and Skills Centre and spent many years as its Chair. He was also a past president of the Canadian Chamber Executives of Canada.
John was a strong and genuine advocate for Indigenous economic reconciliation. He was an organizer for the Smudge Walk, and sat on the boards of Cowessess Ventures, Little Child Holdings and Reconciliation Regina.
One of John’s passions was his role as singer and guitarist with The Garage Band. The band’s primary focus has been fundraising; raising $1.4 million for the Allan Blair Cancer Centre as well as more than $100,000 for mental health initiatives.
The 2022 recipients are:
This year’s recipients of the Saskatchewan Order of Merit will join the 258 individuals who have previously been invested.
The Saskatchewan Order of Merit was established in 1985 to recognize excellence and achievement from outstanding Saskatchewan citizens. They have made significant contributions in areas such as art, agriculture, business and industry, community leadership, public service, research and volunteer service. The Saskatchewan Order of Merit is recognized in the Canadian Honours System.
For more information about the Saskatchewan Order of Merit or to nominate someone, visit www.saskatchewan.ca/honoursawards.