The Honorable Dennis Flessland of Huntington Woods, Norway’s honorary consul to Michigan, was selected to receive an extraordinary honor from His Majesty King Harald of Norway in a ceremony Tuesday.
Flessland, an attorney and member of Farmington Hills-based Nordkap Lodge of the Sons of Norway, was awarded The King’s Knight First Class of the Order of Merit for “meritorious services for Norwegian interests and Norwegian citizens.” The Order with its unique medal was to be presented by Sissel Breie, Norway’s Consul General in New York, at the Detroit Institute of Arts.
Sponsored by the office of the Consul General in New York and Nordkap Lodge, the ceremony was to include a reception in the museum’s historic Kresge Court.
The Royal Norwegian Order of Merit was founded by Norway’s King Olav V in 1985. It is conferred on foreign and Norwegian nationals as a reward for their outstanding service in the interest of Norway. The King of Norway is the Grand Master of the Order.
The Insignia of the Order is the Cross of St. Olav, a medal wrought of gold or silver, with a plain crown in each of the four corners formed by the arms of the cross, inlaid with a rounded, red cross in the center with King Olav V’s monogram surmounted by a crown. The order’s ribbon is made of navy blue silk and the medal is worn on the left breast.
The King’s right to bestow orders is provided in the Norwegian Constitution, which specifies that such orders carry no rank or title other than that attached to any office nor do they confer any special rights upon their recipients.