2023 Diversity Power List names Lenny Rush, Emma Watson and Rose Ayling-Ellis alongside community champions

Diversity Power List

Diversity Power List
2023 Diversity Power List honours 50 of the most inclusive and inspirational people in the UK

Champions of diversity and inclusion across the UK have been named in the 2023 Diversity Power List. An honours-style list, it highlights and recognises individuals who are working tirelessly to make a tremendous difference to other people’s lives.

Now in its second year, the 2023 Diversity Power List shines a light on people working hard in their local communities and networks to change opinions, attitudes, and behaviours. It features a few high-profile names – including 14-year-old actor and TV personality Lenny Rush, actor and women’s rights advocate Emma Watson and deaf actor/dancer Rose Ayling-Ellis – for taking a stand, sharing experiences, and setting a great example. More importantly, the Diversity Power List highlights the work of extraordinary individuals, many of whom fly under the radar championing diversity, driving inclusion and bringing enduring change.

Paul Sesay

“Big changes start with small steps, typically taken in a social or work community,” says Paul Sesay, CEO and founder of Inclusive Companies which compiles the Diversity Power List. “It often starts with a lone voice from a brave individual whose commitment, passion and dedication cascade and grow as they bring others with them. The Diversity Power List seeks to applaud these individuals and amplify their work to ensure lasting success.”

The background of those on this year’s list is truly diverse: from digital marketers to community organisers, senior police officers to leaders of charities, athletes to journalists, CEOs of major businesses to human rights activists and leaders in education.

This year’s Diversity Power List was revealed at the 2023 Inclusive Awards on December 5. “Our aim in publishing the Diversity Power List is to bring together the most ‘diversity conscious’ people in the UK,” continues Paul. “They deserve to be recognised for championing diversity for one or more of the protected characteristics of people who comprise society in the UK.  Dedicated to what they are doing and innovative in how they are doing it, they are an inspiration to us all.”

The 2023 Diversity Power List is here below in brief: CLICK HERE for more information on each individual.

2023 Diversity Power List

DPL23/24 Honours List
  • Alice Dearing – GB’s first female black swimmer
  • Andrew George – President of the National Black Police Association
  • Angel Miller – founder of No Ordinary Book Shop specialising in children’s books featuring BAME characters
  • Asad Shaykh – brand/marketing expert working with LGBTQ+ creatives
  • Barmidele Farinre – STEM mentor, ambassador in healthcare
  • Professor Belinda Colston – Strategic Lead for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion at the University of Lincoln / founder of the Eleanor Glanville Institute
  • Bernadette Thompson OBE – Associate Director of Inclusion for NHS Barts Health
  • Bisi Alimi – British-Nigerian gay rights activist and public speaker
  • Choon Young Tan – influencer and advocate for under-represented Chinese and East Asian LGBTQ+ people
  • Colin Hambrook – poet, writer and editor of Disability Arts Online
  • Debbie Hewitt MBE – first female chair of the English Football Association
  • Dev Trehan – first British South Asian Sky Sports football reporter and award-winning journalist
  • Dr Nicola Sharp-Jeffs OBE – founder and CEO of charity Surviving Economic Abuse
  • Dr Sophie Chandauka MBE – chair and executive founder of the Black British Businesses Awards, awarded MBE for contribution to diversity in business
  • Emma Watson – celebrated English actress and women’s rights advocate
  • Fox Fisher – trans advocate, artist, author and filmmaker
  • Gavin Neate – CEO/Founder of WelcoMe, creator of technological solutions confronting challenges faced by disabled individuals and advocate for disability empowerment and rights
  • Jameela Jamil – actress, activist, podcaster, television host and influential advocate for numerous social justice causes
  • James Adeleke – a multi-award-winning leader in social mobility
  • James Lee – policy professional dedicated to creating an inclusive and equitable society
  • Jamie Shields – blind trainer, consultant and advocate against ableism in society
  • Jenny Garrett OBE – co-founder of Rocking Ur Teens, award-winning career coach, author and leadership trainer, advancing representation of ethnically-diverse women and youngsters
  • Joan Pons Laplana – a nurse with autism who campaigns, lobbies and drives reform for equity within the NHS and beyond
  • Jordan Gray – transgender actor, singer, stand-up comedian and inclusion advocate leading by example in the entertainment industry as the first trans contestant on The Voice and first trans solo stand-up comedian at The London Palladium
  • Kate Stephens – CEO of Smart Works giving underprivileged and unemployed women opportunities to work
  • Kathryn Albany-Ward – advocate for colour blind community and founder of Colour Blind Awareness CIC
  • Laïla El-Métoui – CEO of LEMeducation, a staunch advocate for LGBTIQA+ rights and a stalwart champion of diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • Leyla Okhai – founder of Diverse Minds and trainer, speaker and mentor for culture, race and workplace wellbeing
  • Lenny Rush – aged just 14, an accomplished actor, budding TV presenter and tireless advocate for awareness of Dwarfism and the challenges people face
  • Lee Marshall MBA – highly respected and influential figure in the areas of governance, diversity and inclusion, he champions allies and advocates across a range of charities supporting diverse groups
  • Maria McDowell – founder of Lollipop Mentoring CIC to empower black women in business
  • Mary Earps – professional footballer and England’s goalkeeper who stood up to Nike to face down discrimination in the women’s game
  • Max Siegel – transgender advocate, speaker and marketing consultant
  • Melanie Eusebe MBE – business strategist and founder of Black British Business Awards
  • Neil Heslop OBE – registered blind leader across business and charity sectors, CEO of Charities Aid Foundation and champion of disability rights
  • Professor Nancy Doyle – advocate and adviser for neurodiverse people, breaking down barriers in the workplace through research & public speaking
  • Rav Bumbra – diversity consultant, advisor and speaker; founder of Cajigo and Structur3dpeople supporting girls and women to succeed in tech
  • Reni Eddo-Lodge – awarding winning journalist, social commentator and author of ‘Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race’
  • Rose Ayling-Ellis – deaf actor, winner of Strictly Come Dancing, campaigner for deaf actors on TV and stage
  • Saima Razzaq – trailblazing community activist using her experience as a queer Muslim woman to champion intersectionality and equity for LGBTQ+ community
  • Sal Naseem – Trailblazing first South Asian and Muslim Regional Director for London at the Independent Office for Police Conduct
  • Sara Weller CBE – founder of MS Must Stop, fundraiser and awareness raiser changing lives of others living with MS
  • Sarah Towler – safeguarding leader and advocate for child protection with local authorities, law enforcement and other stakeholders
  • Shiva Raichandani – non-binary director, producer and screenwriter driving change through the medium of film
  • Sophia Ukor – founder and CEO of Violet Simon to empower women from diverse backgrounds through storytelling to highlight women’s rights and equality
  • Stacey Dooley MBE – journalist, documentary filmmaker unafraid to tackle critical social issues, global injustices and the reality for marginalised communities
  • Steve Ingham CBE – disability advocate for spinal cord injury survivors, chairman of Back Up charity and trustee for Wings for Life, tireless in pursuit of research to improve people’s lives
  • Steven Bartlett – founder of Social Chain digital marketing agency focused on promoting inclusivity and diversity and championing entrepreneurship in the business world
  • Susan Ball – Senior Leader in the Professional Services field, immediate past President of the Chartered Institute of Taxation, diversity, equity and inclusion advocate, who is made by Dyslexia and uses her own experience to encourage others to succeed and change mindsets.
  • Tate Smith – award-winning trans activist and Founder of Tate Smith Consulting who speaks about his lived experience as a transgender man and advises businesses on implementing trans+ inclusion policies.