Journalist, author, non-executive director, broadcaster

Mary Ann Sieghart spent 20 years as Assistant Editor and columnist at The Times and won a large following for her columns on politics, economics, feminism, parenthood and life in general. She has presented many programmes on BBC Radio 4, such as Start the Week, Profile, Analysis, Fallout and One to One. She chaired the revival of The Brains Trust on BBC2 and recently spent a year as a Visiting Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford. She has chaired the Social Market Foundation think tank, is a Visiting Professor at King’s College London, and sits on numerous boards.



Mary Ann Sieghart leads a portfolio life. She makes programmes for BBC Radio 4 and is a Visiting Professor at King’s College London. She spent 2018-19 as a Visiting Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, where she researched her book, The Authority Gap, on why women are taken less seriously than men.

She is a Trustee of The Scott Trust, owner of The Guardian and The Observer; Trustee and former Chair of the Social Market Foundation, a non-party-political think tank; Non-Executive Director of The Merchants Trust and Pantheon International; and Senior Independent Trustee of the Kennedy Memorial Trust. Until recently, she was Senior Independent Director of Henderson Smaller Companies Investment Trust and sat on the Content Board of Ofcom and the Council of Tate Modern.

She spent 19 years as Assistant Editor of The Times, including as Acting Editor of the Monday edition, Op-Ed Editor, Arts Editor, Chief Political Leader-Writer and political and social affairs columnist both on the Op-Ed page and in Times2.

She has also written a weekly column in The Independent about politics, economics and social affairs, and presented Newshour, the BBC World Service’s flagship news and current affairs programme.

Mary Ann has extensive TV and radio experience, including presenting Start the Week, AnalysisProfile, One to One, Fallout, The Inquiry, Beyond Westminster, Newshour, Powerhouse, The Brains Trust, The Week in Westminster, Taking Issue, The Big Picture, No Illusions and The World This Week. She has regularly appeared as a guest on Question Time, Any Questions, Today, Newsnight, The World Tonight, Channel 4 News, PM, The Andrew Marr Show, The World at One, Woman’s Hour and The Daily Politics.

Before joining The Times, Mary Ann was political correspondent of The Economist, City Editor of Today newspaper and a Lex columnist and Eurobond correspondent at the Financial Times.

She has also sat on numerous boards, including the Heritage Lottery Fund, the National Heritage Memorial Fund, the North Fulham New Deal for Communities, New Europe, the No Campaign, the Radcliffe Trust, the Social Studies Faculty of Oxford University, Women in Journalism and the National Council for One-Parent Families.

She won the Laurence Stern Fellowship to work on The Washington Post. She also captained The Times’s University Challenge: The Professionals team, which reached the semi-final.

Media Experience

1986 – now

Presenter on BBC Radio 4, including Start the Week, Fallout, Analysis, Profile, Beyond Westminster and One to One. Also a clutch of one-off documentaries

2010 – 2012

Political columnist, The Independent

2008 – 2010

Presenter of Newshour on the BBC World Service

1988 – 2007

Assistant Editor and political columnist, The TimesAlso Acting Editor, Comment Editor, Chief Political Leader Writer and Arts Editor.

Chair, The Brains Trust, BBC2

1986 – 1988

Political and Media Correspondent, The Economist

Presenter of The World This Week, Channel 4


City Editor, Today newspaper

1982 – 1986

Lex columnist and Eurobond Correspondent, Financial Times

1980 – 1982

Leader writer, Daily Telegraph, during university vacations

Board Roles

2020 –

Non-Executive Director of The Scott Trust, owner of The Guardian and The Observer. Chair of the Investment Committee, overseeing the £1bn endowment.

2019 –

Non-Executive Director of Pantheon International, a FTSE 250, £1.5bn private equity investment trust.

2014 –

Non-Executive Director of The Merchants Trust, a 130-year-old, £600m FTSE-quoted investment trust.

2010 –

Chair for ten years, then trustee of the Social Market Foundation, a non-partisan think tank.

2015 –

Senior Independent Trustee of the Kennedy Memorial Trust, responsible for selecting Kennedy scholars to attend Harvard and MIT.

2012 –

Trustee of the Institute of Art and Ideas, which runs one of the world’s largest philosophy festivals, HowTheLightGetsIn.

2007 –

Member, Advisory Panel of IntoUniversity, a charity that helps disadvantaged children to aspire to, and attend, university.

2014 – 2017

Non-Executive Director of Ofcom Content Board, regulating all TV and radio in the UK

2008 – 2018

Non-Executive Director and then Senior Independent Director of Henderson Smaller Companies Investment Trust, a 131-year-old FTSE company with a market cap of over £900m.

2008 – 2017

Member of Council, Tate Modern

2011 – 2017

Non-Executive Director of DLN Digital Ltd

2006 – 2016

Trustee of The Radcliffe Trust

1997 – 2002

Trustee of the Heritage Lottery Fund and National Heritage Memorial Fund

2000 – 2006

Chair, North Fulham New Deal for Communities

1999 – 2003

Member of Advisory Board, Social Studies Faculty, University of Oxford

1999 – 2004

Member of Steering Committees, No Campaign and New Europe

1996 – 2008

Vice-President, National Association for Gifted Children

1995 – 1998

Founding Committee member, Women in Journalism

1986 – 1989

Treasurer, National Council for One-Parent Families

Academic Posts

2021 –

Visiting Professor, King’s College London

2020 – 2021

Senior Academic Visitor, Oriel College, Oxford

2019 – 2020

Associate Member, Nuffield College, Oxford

2018 – 2019

Visiting Fellow, All Souls College, Oxford