King Philippe of Belgium awards ten titles of nobility and honorary decorations

King Philippe of Belgium awards ten titles of nobility and honorary decorations
King Philippe of Belgium pictured during the recording of his annual television and radio speech on the occasion of the Belgian National day, celebrated on 21 July, at the Royal Palace in Brussels, Wednesday 20 July 2022. Credit: Belga Olivier Matthys

King Philippe awarded titles of nobility to ten people on Wednesday, on the eve of the Belgian National Day. These ennoblements were published on Wednesday in the Belgian Monitor.

Honorary decorations

Ten other high honorary decorations were awarded. notably to Heidi De Pauw of Child Focus Belgium, an organisation dedicated to finding missing children, and to the father of Ihsane Jarfi, the victim of a homophobic assassination in 2012.

Barons and baronesses

Five men and five women were made barons or baronesses. Among them, we find the former Antwerp Councillor Philip Heylen as well as Bernard Gilliot – the former president of the Federation of Belgian Enterprises.

Regina Sluszny, President of the Forum of Jewish Organizations, also received this title, as did Michel Pradolini, president of City Pirates, an Antwerp football club that has turned into a social project.

Former diplomat André Querton and scientists Cédric Blanpain, Dominique Bron and Brigitte Velkeniers-Hoebanckx are also awarded the title of baron or baroness. Charlotte Lhoist, former director of the Lhoist group, and Martine Reijnaers, of Reynaers Aluminium, also received the same honour.

Order of Leopold

A series of high distinctions were issued in the process. Four people join the ranks of the Order of Leopold by being named Commander.

This is the case of the writer and philosopher Alicja Gescinska, but also of Hassan Jarfi, the father of Ihsane Jarfi, victim of a homophobic crime committed in Liège in 2012.

Regnier Haegelsteen and Baron Didier Matray are now also Commanders of the Order of Leopold.

Order of the Crown

Finally, the rank of Commander of the Order of the Crown was awarded to six people. Heidi De Pauw, managing director of Child Focus, as well as the author Bart Van Loo, are the best known personalities among them.

There are also the harpist Anneleen Lenaerts, the photographer Marie Françoise Plissart, the baroness Geneviève van der Straten Ponthoz and the ceramist Ann Van Hoey.

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