Actor only woman of 15 new companions of the Order of Australia, who also include Jacques Nasser and Ross Garnaut

Australia’s highest civilian honour has been bestowed on the Qantas chief executive, Alan Joyce, the academy award-winning actor Cate Blanchett and the departing mining industry heavyweight Jacques Nasser.

The governor general, General Sir Peter Cosgrove, on Monday announced 891 Australians honoured in this year’s Queen’s birthday list, including 15 appointed as companions of the Order of Australia.

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