NICOLE Kidman has made her mark in Tinseltown but today will be recognised by the United Nations and with an Order of Australia.
The actor has been appointed a Companion in the general division of the Order of Australia in the Australia Day Honours for her services to performing arts as an acclaimed film actor.
The award also recognises her dedication to health care through contributions to help improve treatment for women and children and advocacy for cancer research.
“I am deeply moved that I have been chosen to receive this prestigious award,” the 38-year-old said of her Australia Day gong.
“It is an honour beyond any of my expectations and I thank Australia for giving it to me.”
Kidman cannot receive the award in person as she is in the US, where she has been appointed a Goodwill Ambassador for the UN Fund for Women.
She will use her fame to draw attention to battles against sexism, violence and disease in places like Somalia and Afghanistan.
“They asked me if I would accept and I felt slightly embarrassed,” Kidman said.
“That’s part of your duty when you’re in the public eye: if you can actually have a few causes you can help to raise a lot of money for.”
Kidman was one of eight to receive the highest honour of the Companion of the Order of Australia.
One of the 662 people honoured was NSW Police Commissioner Ken Moroney, who was named an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for service to law enforcement.
TV and radio personality Dr Karl Sven Kruszelnicki was honoured with an AM for promoting the understanding of science.
Outspoken Sydney Swans chairman Richard Colless was awarded a Member (AM) in the General Division for services to AFL.
Legendary boxing trainer and coach Johnny Lewis, who trained Jeff Fenech and Kostya Tszyu, was recognised with an OAM.
The sister of media owner Rupert Murdoch, philanthropist Janet Calvert-Jones, was awarded an Officer of the Order of Australia for service to the community through philanthropy and support for medical research, access to education in rural areas, development of significant cultural and botanical collections and to the print media.
Woolworths and IAG chairman James Strong was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for his services to business and commerce.
Entertainer Graham Kennedy, who died last May, received a posthumous AO for his service to the entertainment industry as an actor, comedian and presenter.