Vanessa Kingori MBE, Publishing Director at British Vogue, has been awarded an honorary fellowship from Royal Holloway, University of London, for her extraordinary contribution to the British media industry.
Principal of Royal Holloway, Professor Paul Layzell and Vanessa Kingori MBE
Honorary Fellowships are awarded to those who have achieved eminence and those who have made an outstanding contribution to the life and work of the university or to the cause of education generally.
In her current role, Vanessa is responsible for all elements of the British Vogue brand revenue and brand strength. This includes advertising, branded content, partnerships, events, marketing, circulation and editorial alignment. Vanessa is the first female business lead in British Vogue’s 105 year history.
The conferral was held at the university’s campus in Egham, Surrey, during a meeting with Principal, Professor Paul Layzell and Chair of Council, Dame Margaret Hodge. Vanessa’s oration was given by Professor James Knowles, Senior Vice-Principal (Education) and Deputy Principal (Academic) at Royal Holloway.
Speaking about her honorary fellowship, Vanessa Kingori MBE, said: “I am extremely honoured to be given this fellowship by Royal Holloway.
“As a Royal Holloway alumna, it means a lot to me to have the university recognise the work that I have gone on to do since graduating.
“It’s really important for me to let young people know, that despite the recent pandemic, with hard work, and dedication, you can achieve the things you aspire to.”
Vanessa is a multi-award-winning, British based business woman, youth advocate, diversity proponent and mother. She has over 15 years’ experience in the media industry and she has a special focus on business transformation, digitalisation and change management. She is also Conde Nast’s first and only Black Publisher.
Vanessa’s role at British Vogue has involved a significant shift in the brand’s purpose and business strategy with an emphasis on diversity of perspective, social responsibility and female empowerment.
Prior to British Vogue, Vanessa was Publisher of British GQ, also signalling many firsts for the company. Before her decade at Conde Nast she worked at Hearst magazines and the Evening Standard.
In her work as a youth advocate, Vanessa is a long standing visiting Fellow at the University of the Arts London (UAL) where she supports and mentors students. She sits on UAL’s Board of Governors as Trustee and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in 2018.
Her work as diversity proponent includes the judging panel of the Black British Business Awards since 2015- 2020. She also judges the Veuve Clicquot Business Women of The Year Award and The Mayor of London’s TFL’s advertising competition, aimed at challenging a lack of diversity in advertising.
She is a member of The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists Race Equality Taskforce and formed the leadership of the project #SHARETHEMICUK to highlight the accomplishments and contribution of Black women, using the allyship of successful White women across Instagram in 2020. Bringing women together with a combined audience of 175 million, including Bernadine Evaristo, June Sarpong, Emma Dabiri, Kourtney Kardashian, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Victoria Beckham.
She has topped Campaign’s Top 10 Trailblazers and Top 10 Commercial Chiefs for 2020. She has been credited amongst the 100 Most Influential Black Britons every year for the past seven years. Her body of work and services to British Media led her to be awarded an MBE on the Queen's 90th Birthday Honours Lists, 2016.