Former England goalkeeper David James receives an MBE.
Elliott, 48, who started his career at Charlton and also played for Celtic, Chelsea and Italian side Pisa, has campaigned for years for equality in football and worked for the anti-discrimination group Kick It Out. He was also an ambassador and board member for England's unsuccessful bid for the 2018 World Cup.
Elliott, previously an MBE, said: "I am flabbergasted by this honour, and feel privileged and humbled.
"You do not set out in life to win these honours, I have just tried to make a bit of a difference and I would like to thank organisations such as Kick It Out for all the work they have done. It will be a very proud moment for me when I receive the honour."
James, who said the highlight of his career was his debut, spoke of a professional sportsman's off-pitch responsibilities.
"When a guy drives round in a £250,000 car, some kids like that and want to be a footballer to do that," he said.
"It would be wrong to put them off being a sportsman for that. But sportsmen should also appreciate the fact they are in a privileged position.
"Where they can, they should try and give something back and show a humane side.
"There are plenty of lads out there who don't get the glory but do a lot of good work."
Other sportspeople to be honoured by the Queen were world number one golfer Luke Donald and former Wales rugby union international Shane Williams, who were both appointed an MBE, while elite showjumper Nick Skelton received an OBE.
Williams, the record try-scorer for Wales with 58 tries in 87 matches, retired from international rugby after the World Cup last year and brought an end to his domestic career with Ospreys at the end of last season.
The 35-year-old, who will play in Japan next season, told the Press Association: "I have been lucky enough to have had a fantastic career and what a great way to finish. I am very humbled by the fact I am being regarded in this way - I never thought I would receive an honour such as this and it is a fantastic end to my career."
Williams, Wales' most-capped winger, made his international debut in 2000 and was part of the Grand Slam-winning side in the 2005 Six Nations.
He twice toured with the British and Irish Lions, to New Zealand in 2005 and South Africa in 2009, scoring two tries against the Springboks.
Among the major rugby-playing nations, only Australia's David Campese has scored more international tries.
Zaha Hadid, services to architecture (Olympic aquatics centre architect);
Tessa Jowell, formerly Olympics minister, London 2012 board member, services to politics and charity.
Paul Elliott, services to equality and diversity in football;
Peter Keen, special advisor, UK Sport.
Malcolm Arnold, services to athletics;
Leonard Thomas Arnold, services to gymnastics;
Yvonne Arnold, services to gymnastics;
Lorraine Baldry, chair, Olympic Delivery Authority planning committee;
Dr Michael Bull, services to sport and charity;
Richard Callicott, services to volleyball;
Jerome Frost, head of design and regeneration, Olympic Delivery Authority;
Ian Galloway, programme director and chief executive, CLM Delivery Partner for the Olympic Delivery Authority;
John Michael Glover, services to water polo;
Matt King, services to charity
Nick Skelton, showjumper.
Ed Warner, services to British athletics;
Lawrence Waterman, head of health and safety, Olympic Delivery Authority;
Philip Weaver, chairman, Professional Golfers Association;
Albert Wood, services to canoeing;
Simon Wright, director of infrastructure and utilities, Olympic Delivery Authority.
Hamish Adam, services to karate;
Margaret Alphonsi, Saracens and England rugby player;
Alex Arthur, services to boxing;
Ivor Beeks, services to football and community in High Wycombe;
Sharon Brokenshire, services to disability sport;
Keith Cottell, services to swimming and lifesaving;
Lorraine Deschamps, services to sport and diversity;
Luke Donald, services to golf;
Peter Dury, services to groundsmanship;
Lt Cdr John Gawley, services to hockey;
Margaret Jackson, services to netball;
David James, goalkeeper;
Dr Jennifer Shute, services to British skiing;
Shane Williams, services to rugby;
Alison Williamson, services to archery.
Terence Downes, services to boxing and charity.