Frances Ryan (she/her)

Guardian columnist and author

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Frances Ryan is an award-winning journalist, broadcaster and author. Her work has taken her from the walls of the National Trust to the halls of the Women of the World Festival, with appearances on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour and The World Tonight, BBC Radio 2’s Jeremy Vine Show, BBC Sunday Politics, Channel 4 News and more. Ryan is a columnist for The Guardian, as well as a feature writer and reporter, and has been at the forefront of coverage of inequality over the last decade. Ryan was highly commended at both the 2020 and 2019 National Press Awards. She was shortlisted for the 2020 Paul Foot Award for Investigative Journalism, as well as the Orwell Prize in 2019 and won the RNIB media impact award in 2021. Her critically acclaimed debut book, Crippled, about life for disabled people in austerity Britain, was shortlisted for the Bread and Roses award 2020. It has now inspired the BBC short drama ‘Hen Night’, coming to BBC iPlayer later this summer. Ryan has a doctorate in politics from The University of Nottingham.    

“Disabled people are still hugely underrepresented in the media, and when we do get a spot, we’re often pigeonholed – chosen to cover disability rather than sport, or Westminster or films. I’m so grateful to be on this list but there’s many brilliant disabled writers out there who don’t get a platform. I hope editors and media organisations take measures to enable them to get a place at the table, and young wannabe journalists reading this know how much better off the media will be with them in it.”