Before he even met Meghan Markle, Prince Harry was already a feminist and already talking about feminist issues. He was widely applauded for his growth and wokeness back then. But then he met and married a feminist and suddenly sh-t got real for the old boys’ club, and all of those bitchy old men have been trying to take down Harry and Meghan for the past year. So… is it any wonder that Harry and Meghan really have set out to do things differently while setting up their own office? No old boys’ club here: Harry and Meghan are the first royals to have an all-female senior staff:
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have become the first royals to have an all-female team of senior staff after appointing a pro-EU former ambassador as their right-hand woman. The couple have just headhunted Fiona Mcilwham, who became one of the youngest British ambassadors in history when she was appointed to Albania in 2009 aged 35, and has worked as a senior adviser to the director-general of EU enlargement.
She will start work next month as the couple’s private secretary, the most senior role in any royal household and equivalent to a chief of staff. Intriguingly it means that Harry and Meghan – who both describe themselves as feminists – have chosen an all-female team around them. Miss Mcilwham joins their deputy private secretary Heather Wong, head of communications Sara Latham, two senior female press officers and a team of female private office employees. Their only male hiring has been a young social media officer, in charge of their in-house publicity, including beefing up their Instagram site with glossy images and videos of the couple.
You can read more about Mcilwham’s history and Heather Wong’s history at the Daily Mail – Wong worked for the Obama administration and Mcilwham’s husband was one of David Cameron’s strategists and advisors. It should be noted that in modern history, even the most prominent royal women never surrounded themselves with female staffers. The Queen is said to prefer to have men around, and Diana was that way too – Diana was much more comfortable with male staffers. I don’t think Camilla has many female office staffers either. It’s sort of cool that Meghan and Harry are hiring extremely qualified people… who just happen to be women. It’s awesome actually. Oh, and remember that they “took” Natalie Campbell for their Sussex Royal Foundation or whatever as well.
Photos courtesy of WENN, Avalon Red and Backgrid.