Edward Enninful, the outgoing editor-in-chief of British Vogue, has been named the UK’s most influential black person. He said the organisation behind the list had been always “so supportive” throughout his career.
The fashion journalist was voted top of the Powerlist, which was started in 2006 to showcase black role models to young people across sectors including business, science, technology and the arts. Entrants are judged on their “ability to change lives and alter events, as demonstrated over a protracted period of time and in a positive manner”.
Enninful was ahead of Dean Forbes, a partner at the private equity firm Corten Capital, in second place, and Afua Kyei, chief financial officer at the Bank of England, in third place. The mayor of Bristol, Marvin Rees, was also included within the list’s top 10.
Other people named on the Powerlist include the social media entrepreneur Patricia Bright , and the comedian Mo Gilligan.
This year’s Powerlist Black Excellence Awards for 2024take place in London this Friday.
Enninful, who was awarded an OBE for services to diversity in fashion in 2016, has confirmed that his last edition as editor of British Vogue will be March 2024; then he moves on to become Vogue’s global creative and cultural adviser, and editorial adviser at British Vogue. His successor will be Chioma Nnadi, who is editor of Vogue’s US edition website.
Commenting on the announcement, Enninful said: “Ever since I moved back to take over British Vogue, the Powerlist has always been so supportive, always there in one shape or another. But apart from me, it’s incredible that it shines a light on black people really breaking boundaries, who are unafraid and champion what it means to be truly diverse in their own industries. So, I’m honoured, more than anything, to be a part of this family.”
Michael Eboda, chief executive of Powerful Media, the publisher of the Powerlist, said: “As we celebrate the Powerlist’s 18th edition I am so proud of its legacy of celebrating remarkable and inspirational black people in Britain. We were doing it before diversity was a trend, and even now data shows that trend is sadly reversing, our commitment to recognising and celebrating the achievements of these incredible role models remains as strong as ever.
“We send our huge congratulations to Edward Enninful OBE, who thoroughly deserves to top the list this year. His vision and passion for fashion and diversity has influenced the industry at a global level. Edward’s impact will be felt for generations to come and for that, I applaud him.”
Top 10 of Powerlist 2024
1) Edward Enninful – editor-in-chief, British Vogue, and European editorial director, Vogue
2) Dean Forbes – chief executive, Forterro, and partner at Corten Capital
3) Afua Kyei – chief financial officer of Bank of England
4) Marvin Rees – mayor of Bristol
5) Tunde Olanrewaju – senior partner and managing partner, McKinsey
6) Joshua Siaw – partner at White & Case law firm
7) Syreeta Brown – group chief people and communications officer, Virgin Money UK
8) Paulette Simpson – executive, corporate affairs and public policy, Jamaica National bank and executive director, The Voice Media Group
9) Vanessa Kingori – chief business officer, Condé Nast Britain, and Vogue European business adviser
10) Simon Woolley – peer, co-founder of Operation Black Vote and principal, Homerton College, Cambridge University.