The CEO of Golden West Radio is one of three Manitobans who have been appointed to the Order of Canada.

Elmer Hildebrand will receive the honour at a ceremony in Ottawa in the new year along with fellow Manitobans Phil Fontaine and Janice Filmon.

Hildebrand called it a great honour and says he’s looking forward to the induction ceremony in spring. He says the call came as a complete surprise.

Starting with a single radio station in Altona, Hildebrand has built Golden West into a 40 station empire across the prairies with about 500 employees. Community service radio has always been the focus of Golden West, and that mantra has been extended to the company’s many successful online community websites. Golden West is also well known for hiring local people who know their communities well and can connect with their listeners. Hildebrand says he doesn’t see that formula changing anytime soon.

“We look forward to being able to continue doing things for the community, not only in southern Manitoba, but in the Prairies and Canada, for years to come. We don’t see this as a destination, this is a process that will carry on and we will try to do the best we can for the communities that we operate in.”

Hildebrand was named as a member of the Order of Canada in recognition of a “lifetime of distinguished service in or to a particular community, group or field of activity.”