TOP 10 - INSPIRATIONAL PERSONALITIES 2021
The multi-award winning recording artist and musical theatre actress was made an MBE in 2006 for her contribution to British music. Knight has been a longstanding campaigner on equality issues and during the Covid-19 pandemic released a single to raise money for the NHS. The chart-topping songstress is also a high profile supporter of the Terrence Higgins Trust.
Henry Ewan Golding is a Malaysian actor, model, and television host. He has starred in a series of smash hit movies including Crazy Rich Asians and is the lead character in the soon to be released action film Snake Eyes. He recently joined presenter Alexa Chung in support of the Stop Asian Hate initiative amid an increase in hate crime.
The Peckham-born actor rose to public prominence as Finn in the Star Wars sequel trilogy films. He received the BAFTA Rising Star Award in 2016, and was cited as one of the Top 100 most influential people of African descent in 2020. Boyega is also a major supporter of the Damilola Taylor Trust in memory of his childhood friend who was murdered in a racist attack.
Nadiya Jamir Hussain MBE is a British TV chef, author and television presenter. She rose to fame after winning the sixth series of BBC’s The Great British Bake Off and has since fronted several food programmes including Nadiya’s British Food Adventure and has released seven cookbooks. Hussain, who is also a prominent campaigner for better support for people affected by mental health issues, baked Queen Elizabeth’s birthday cake when the monarch turned 90 in 2016.
Naomi Campbell is one of the most recognisable Black supermodels of all-time. In addition to a distinguished modelling career, she has made several film and television appearances. Campbell is also responsible for wide-ranging fundraising and charity work in South Africa and across the globe. She began charity work with Nelson Mandela in 1993, and in 1997 he named her ‘Honorary Granddaughter’ for her activism.
The 31-year-old British-Zimbabwean actor was cast as the leading male role in the popular Netflix series Bridgerton and will star in the forthcoming Dungeons and Dragons film. Page’s career continues to skyrocket and this year he earned a spot on the Time100 Next list and as a Saturday Night Live host. He is also involved with various charitable initiatives to provide clean water to less economically developed countries.
Rio Ferdinand is one of the most decorated football players of all time winning the Premier League and Champions League with Manchester United. Since hanging up his football boots, Ferdinand has become a prime time TV presenter and has become a prominent campaigner in the fight against online racist abuse. He set up The Rio Ferdinand Foundation to help young people living in poverty and those affected by social and economic challenges.
Riz Ahmed is an actor, rapper and activist. Rising to fame after his appearance in Four Lions, he has more recently landed roles in Rogue One, from the Star Wars Anthology, and HBO’s The Night Of. On top of this he raps as a member of the Swet Shop Boys and campaigns, partially through rap music, for Rohingya and Syrian refugee children.
Sandra Miju Oh is best known for her starring roles as Cristina Yang on the ABC medical drama series Grey’s Anatomy and Eve Polastri in the spy thriller series Killing Eve. She is the first actress of Asian descent to be nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award and is leading campaigner for increased diversity in Hollywood.
Okonedo is one of Britain’s most accomplished actors and was awarded the CBE in 2019 for services to drama. This recognition followed an OBE in 2010, in recognition for her three decades of work, which has included an Oscar nomination in 2004 for her film Hotel Rwanda and a Tony Award for the Broadway play A Raisin in the Sun. The star has worked in TV, film and theatre since her training at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London.