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Zeta-Jones, rock stars receive queen's honors

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • Graham Nash, John Cale honored with OBEs
  • Zeta-Jones, cookbook author Leith and record producer Millar get CBEs
  • Artist Rego and Cambridge vice chancellor Richard made dames
  • Queen's honors list released twice each year

London, England (CNN) -- Two rock 'n roll stars and an Oscar-winning actress were among those receiving birthday honors from Britain's Queen Elizabeth on Saturday.

Graham Nash, a founding member of both Crosby, Stills, and Nash and the Hollies, and John Cale, a founding member of influential early '70s group The Velvet Underground, will both receive an OBE, which stands for Officer of the Order of the British Empire, the Cabinet Office announced Saturday.

Nash and Cale, who both continue to perform, were honored for their services to music.

Welsh actress Catherine Zeta-Jones, who won an Academy Award for her role in "Chicago," will receive a CBE, which stands for Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

She joins cookbook author Prudence Leith and Robin Millar, a record producer who has worked with artists including Sting, Paul Weller and Peter Gabriel.

Millar, blind since 1985, has 150 gold and platinum discs and 44 number-one hits. He produced Sade's multi-platinum album, "Diamond Life."

London-born actress Sophie Okonedo, who was nominated for an Oscar for her role in the 2004 film "Hotel Rwanda," will receive an OBE, along with Tamara Mellon, founder of designer shoe brand Jimmy Choo.

The honors list is released twice a year -- at New Year's and to mark the queen's official birthday in June. A committee within the British Cabinet Office assembles the honors list, and Queen Elizabeth awards the honors to recipients in ceremonies at Buckingham Palace.

The awards recognize service and achievement in all fields and are considered a major honor for British citizens. Noncitizens may also be recognized.

A knighthood, or KBE, is the highest honor. Men are made knights, after which they are called "sirs," and women receive DBEs and are made dames.

Two women made dames on this year's list are Portuguese artist Paula Rego, whose modern works hang in London's Tate Gallery and Saatchi Gallery, and Alison Richard, vice chancellor of Cambridge University.

After knighthoods and DBEs come CBEs, OBEs, and MBEs.

Sports stars, businesspeople, and those involved with charity and diplomatic work are also on the honors list, which the Cabinet Office called "one of the most diverse yet."