We are delighted to announce that M&C Saatchi Talk CEO, Jane Boardman, has been awarded an OBE for her services to fashion and beauty.
Over the past 15 years, Jane has played a crucial and pivotal role in raising the profile and demonstrating the significant contribution of the British fashion and beauty industries to the UK's economy. The British beauty industry alone is worth £24.5bn to the UK economy, making a bigger contribution to the UK’s GDP than the creative, arts and entertainment sector, and the aerospace manufacturing sector. A sector previously ignored now has a voice and is taken seriously by policy makers.
In 2008, Jane became an adviser to the British Fashion Council (BFC) and was part of an illustrious team including Dylan Jones OBE, Harold Tillman CBE, and Caroline Rush CBE, determined to transform the fashion industry. Over a decade, the BFC secured London's place on the global fashion calendar, brought it closer to the art world via the creation of the Fashion Arts Foundation, and helped launch London Men’s Fashion Week.
Not content with just raising the profile of the fashion industry, Jane jointly founded the British Beauty Council with Millie Kendall OBE, Anna-Marie Solowij and Kate Shapland, born out of frustrations that there was no recognition, support or voice for an industry that employs more than half a million people. The Council, a not-for-profit organisation, soon set about pushing for change, tackling the inherent prejudice about an industry that as Jane says, was perceived as "fluffy and shallow".
Since 2018, the British Beauty Council has become the champion of the beauty industry and was a particular force during the pandemic as beauty salons closed their doors. Over the past five years, it has launched prolific campaigns and initiatives to engage the highest levels of Government, politicians and business leaders in discussions around the value of British beauty – not only to the national economy but also its social and cultural impact on the nation’s population.
Richard Thompson, M&C Saatchi UK Chair, said: "Jane has been an integral part of the M&C Saatchi family for more than two decades – not just through her total dedication to her work but also through the unwavering support she has given to her colleagues. We are delighted that her tireless drive to give the beauty and fashion industries the voice it deserves has been rewarded with this recognition. We are all very proud of what Jane has achieved.”
Marcus Peffers, Group CEO M&C Saatchi said: “Having known Jane for over 20 years, I have been witness to her focus and determination to drive change. She has provided incredible support to the fashion and beauty industries and I am so happy she has been awarded this honour in recognition of all she has done for both sectors.”
Jane Boardman, who fell in love with beauty products growing up, spending hours in a pharmacy chain owned by her parents, said: "Beauty is a wonderful industry. It is a hugely important part of the British economy and a major employer. It has breadth and depth of career opportunities spanning both science and creativity, allows us all to express ourselves, and solves many personal skin and hair problems. I have been fortunate to have worked with many incredible and influential colleagues, notably Millie who is an extraordinary force.
"I am immensely honoured to have been awarded an OBE for my services to fashion and beauty. I feel privileged to have played a small role in elevating the work of the leaders of these incredible industries, particularly Caroline Rush, Dylan Jones and Millie Kendall. Both industries provide the UK with products and services that bring joy to so many. I will continue to champion the industries I love, supporting businesses that make a difference and break new boundaries in their field.I am grateful to those I have worked with on these shared endeavours and to my M&C Saatchi colleagues for encouraging me in my pro-bono work."
CEO of M&C Saatchi Talk, Jane is a communications strategist and PR entrepreneur, with expertise in brands and global brand building. She is also co-president of international PR network SERMO, covering 15 countries worldwide.
Jane is committed to nurturing and developing new talent and campaigns to improve diversity within the industry. She is passionate about supporting and developing young people both within the agency, the broader business world, and more generally within British society.
Jane is a co-founder of the British Beauty Council, a not-for-profit organisation to represent the voices, opinions and needs of the British Beauty Industry. She sits on the board of the Fragrance Foundation.
Jane has previously held executive board roles at Ketchum, Evans Hunt Scott and Lynne Franks PR and non-executive roles at Metail, The Fashion Arts Foundation and Dance Umbrella. An alumni of Loughborough University, Jane lives in South West London with her husband and Murphy, an Irish terrier.
Jane Boardman’s official name, which appears on the Honours List, is Heather Jane Boardman.
Jane’s career in brief:
- 2023: Awarded OBE for services to Fashion and Beauty.
- 2020: Talk merges with M&C Saatchi PR to form M&C Saatchi Talk, where Jane is CEO.
- 2018: Founds the British Beauty Council with Millie Kendall, chair from 2019 - 2022.
- 2012: Works with the BFC on Britain Creates, an initiative to support the cultural Olympiad. The project brought top British fashion designers and artists together to collaborate on one-off works of art that embody Olympian values.
- 2012: Helps launch London Collections Men’s with Dylan Jones OBE as Chair.
- 2010: Becomes chair of SERMO, a global network of communications agencies.
- 2010: Appointed founder and trustee of the BFC Fashion Arts Foundation – an initiative to inspire and support fashion and the arts through a series of collaborative projects.
- 2008: Joins British Fashion Council as a strategy advisor.
- 2008: Appointed board member of Dance Umbrella (2008 - 2018), the UK’s leading festival of contemporary dance.
- 2001: Founds PR agency Talk PR, specialising in fashion, beauty & luxury lifestyle and part of the M&C Saatchi Group.
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