Duke and Duchess of Sussex appoint media executive as new charity director

23 Aug 2019 News

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry

Credit: Mark Jones (CC)

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have appointed leading media executive Karen Blackett OBE as a director at the new Sussex Royal Foundation. 

She was officially listed as a director of the foundation on Companies House on Thursday.

The couple set up their own foundation earlier this year after splitting from their joint charity with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Blackett is the second appointment after Natalie Campbell, who moved with the Sussexes from the Royal Foundation. 

A spokesperson for the Royal Foundation said: “These changes are designed to best complement the work and responsibilities of Their Royal Highnesses as they prepare for their future roles, and to better align their charitable activity with their new households.”

Blackett, who was awarded an OBE for services to the media industry in 2014, is chair of media agency MediaCom UK and country manager of marketing and communications firm WPP. She is also Chancellor at the University of Portsmouth.

Blackett labels herself an “exhausted Mum” on her Twitter page, and was named number one in the 2015 Powerlist of the 100 most influential people of African or African Caribbean heritage in the UK. 

Blackett wrote in The Guardian in 2014 on how role models can help the business world reflect the reality of social diversity, saying: "Young minorities usually have a limited number of role models, and so choose their life paths from a narrow palette of options.

"I am a single mother to a five-year-old boy and I want my son to truly know that he can be whatever he chooses to be, without any barriers related to his skin colour."  

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex's charitable foundation will involve new initiatives around the environment and support for children and families.

Earlier this month the Duke and Duchess of Sussex chose 15 charities to follow on Instagram. They had identified the charities as “Forces for Change” and will be selecting charities each month with the same goal.

For more news, interviews, opinion and analysis about charities and the voluntary sector sign up to receive the Civil Society News daily bulletin here

More on