Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'I Want to Be a Woman Who Works, Not a Lady Who Lunches'

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'I Want to Be a Woman Who Works, Not a Lady Who Lunches'

Article excerpt

Byline: RossLydall Chief News Correspondent

MEGHAN MARKLE has been described as a star with a social conscience -- and has campaigned on gender equality, homelessness and poverty in Africa.

She has balanced the demands of building her acting career alongside efforts to back good causes as her fame increased.

"I've never wanted to be a lady who lunches -- I've always wanted to be a woman who works," she said.

Prior to her relationship with Prince Harry becoming public, the 36-year-old Californian divorcee was best known for her role as Rachel Zane, since 2011, in US legal drama Suits.

She has also appeared in three Hollywood films: Get Him To The Greek, Remember Me and Horrible Bosses.

But she insists she will be able to remain true to her roots. "I'm still the same person that I am, and I've never defined myself by my relationship," she said.

Rachel Meghan Markle was born on August 4, 1981, to clinical therapist mother Doria and TV lighting director Thomas. She grew up in Los Angeles and studied at a girls' Roman Catholic college.

Her parents "came from little" and taught her to care for others. This included buying turkeys for homeless shelters at Thanksgiving and delivering meals to hospice patients. Her parents divorced when she was six.

Her father was of Dutch and Irish descent and her mother African-American. This created "a grey area surrounding my selfidentification", she has written. But she added: "I have come to embrace that to voice my pride in being a strong, confident mixed-race woman."

When she was 11, she persuaded a soap manufacturer to change an advert after she wrote a letter to thenfirst lady Hillary Clinton complaining that it implied women belonged in the kitchen.

She graduated from Northwestern University in theatre and international relations.

Trying to pay bills while auditioning for acting roles, she became a freelance calligrapher, doing correspondence for Dolce & Gabbana and wedding invitations for clients such as singer Robin Thicke. …

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