2020/06/24 · Author: · Comments: 00 · Filed under: News

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who are settling into life in Los Angeles, have signed on with the New York-based Harry Walker Agency for speaking engagements, according to a person familiar with their plans.

The couple, whose professional interests and every move have been scrutinized, will be engaging in moderated discussions and keynote speeches with trade associations, corporations and community forums, said the person, who declined to be identified.

They will focus on social issues such as racial justice (which the former Meghan Markle recently addressed with students from her L.A. alma mater), gender equity and environmental concerns. They will also speak on mental health; Prince Harry has shared his own struggles with grief and has championed emotional health initiatives and organizations in recent years.

The appointment of Harry Walker, tasked with fielding and sourcing speaking opportunities, heralds the couple’s return to public platforms as they seek to promote their philanthropic foundation Archewell. Fans and critics alike have been waiting to see how the couple will deploy their significant cultural capital and which causes they will support since stepping back from front-line royal duties in the U.K.

Since leaving the U.K, the couple’s appearances have largely been in private. Prince Harry spoke at a private JP Morgan event in Miami — where he reportedly discussed mental health — and both he and his wife have participated in video calls with charities they support. As the coronavirus health crisis moves into a new phase, with the reopening of many aspects of public life, the couple could now return to speaking on stages.

By choosing the Harry Walker Agency to represent them, they join an A list of Hollywood entertainers as well as some of the world’s most sought-after Democratic politicos: Michelle and Barack Obama, Hillary and Bill Clinton and rising party star Stacey Abrams.

It’s a high-profile signing for Harry Walker, which was acquired by last year by Endeavor, the parent company of WME.

The speaking agency also represents other close connections of the couple, including Oprah Winfrey and Jane Goodall.

Speaking can be extremely lucrative and the proceeds from Harry and Meghan’s bookings will be part of their move to become financially independent from the British royal family. President Obama reportedly earned $400,000 for one 2017 speech, while the Clintons averaged $250,000 per appearance in 2014. It is unclear what speaking fees will be for the Duke and Duchess, who will speak both together or individually.

Source: LA Times

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