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Girls & Women

These Global Citizens Are Among Britain's Top 25 Most Influential Women

Britain’s 25 most influential and aspirational women have been named by magazine Vogue — and there are some very familiar faces on the list. 

Meghan Markle, now the Duchess of Sussex, Amal Clooney, and J.K. Rowling, who in their owns ways embrace global citizenship, are all featured in what the magazine described as an “extraordinary cast of leaders defining — and redefining — the way we live now."

The inaugural “Vogue 25” list features artists, actresses, scientists, politicians, and more, as it seeks to highlight the women who are “shaping 2018."

Take action: Sign This Petition to #LevelTheLaw and Empower Girls and Women Around the World

“Power and influence now take many forms,” it reads. “It does, however, still require an eye-watering level of achievement…. It also demands the ability to inspire, and the clout to change the conversation,” said Vogue. 

According to the magazine, Meghan “captured the public imagination like no other this year” and is, thanks to her acting career, activism, and a recent royal wedding, one of the most recognisable women in the world. 

“As a biracial campaigning feminist from America,” it adds, “she is helping to forge a new 21st century identity for the monarchy.”

Read more: Meghan Markle Spoke About #MeToo and Everyone Needs to Hear Her Message

Clooney meanwhile is “one of the world’s most respected human-rights lawyers” who has championed and drawn the media spotlight to the plight of the Yazidi women kidnapped by ISIS, and the detained Reuters journalists in Myanmar.  

And when it comes to J.K. Rowling, now the world’s highest-paid author, the magazine said: “A generation belongs to her" referring to the intense poplularity of her Harry Potter series.

The list also named activist and model Adwoa Aboah, who hosted Global Citizen Live at O2 Academy Brixton in April, and, through her platform “Gurls Talk”, has “reinvented what it means to be a supermodel in 2018."

The youngest on the list, at just 22, is Dua Lipa, who was the most streamed female artist in Britain last year and won two Brit Awards this year. Vogue described her as a “culture definer” whose song “New Rules” is “an anthem of female empowerment” that has brought in more than a billion views on YouTube. 

Read more: George and Amal Clooney Are Sending Nearly 3,000 Syrian Refugee Children to School in Lebanon

While we’re on creative types, Letitia Wright was also named, following her breakout role as Shuri in “Black Panther” and “Avengers: Infinity War."

Fellow influential woman, Sinead Burke, a writer and academic, was born with bone growth disorder achondroplasia. Her mission is “to educate designers on how to be fully inclusive in fashion and beyond”, and, according to the magazine, she became a “sensation” this year when she sat front row at London Fashion Week and was photographed in Burberry and Dior for magazine covers. 

Meanwhile, the only politician featured on the list is Ruth Davidson, leader of the Scottish Conservatives. She made the list thanks to her “spectacular gains” for her party in the last Scottish elections, and is described as a “beacon, thanks to her relatable personality and progressive ideas”.

Read more: 15 Quotes That Prove J.K. Rowling Is a Magical Global Citizen

On environmental issues, Stella McCartney, who has been “championing conscious consumption for years”, and Orla Doherty were named to the list.

Although not a household name, Doherty is a TV producer and specialist in deep-sea filming, and she was behind the finale episode of the BBC’s highly-influential “Blue Planet II” documentary series. The hard-hitting episode is widely regarded as having brought the issue of plastic pollution in our oceans to public attention, and sparking the torrent of anti-plastic action that’s showing no signs of slowing. 

The other truly inspirational women on the list are: 
  • Hannah Anderson, co-founder of Manchester-based social media marketing company Social Chain
  • Maria Balshaw, director of the Tate art museums
  • Karen Blackett, advertising director
  • Journalists Carole Cadwalladr (the Observer journalist behind the Cambridge Analytica story), Amelia Gentleman (who broke the Windrush scandal in the Guardian), and Katharine Viner (the Guardian editor)
  • Edie Campbell, model
  • Vicky Featherstone, artistic director of London’s Royal Court theatre
  • Priyanka Joshi, biochemist, working on Alzheimer’s research
  • Natalie Kingham, buying director at Matches Fashion
  • Grace Ladoja, music executive
  • Carolyn McCall, ITV chief executive
  • Sue Y Nabi, beauty innovator
  • Yana Peel, chief executive of the Serpentine Galleries
  • Antonia Romeo, permanent secretary at the Department for International Trade
  • Collette Roche, Manchester United’s chief operating officer
  • Baroness Hale, Supreme Court president

Global Citizen campaigns to achieve the UN’s Global Goals, which include action on gender equality. You can join us by taking action here to support the #LevelTheLaw campaign, which calls on world leaders to put an end to laws that are holding back women and girls from reaching their true potential.