Who Is Meghan Markle? Get to Know Prince Harry's Fascinating Bride-to-Be
Prince Harry is engaged to American actress Meghan Markle, but after the news broke in late 2016 that they were dating, it didn't take long for most people to ask, "Who is she?!" Well, besides being the young royal's bride-to-be, Meghan has starred on the USA series Suits for over seven years. She also happens to be a philanthropist who has done extensive work with children, animals, and women's rights — sound familiar? Read on for six things you should know about Meghan before she becomes royalty.
She's starred on Suits since 2011.
Meghan plays paralegal Rachel Zane on the hit USA series, which is currently in its seventh season and films primarily in Toronto. Meghan first met Prince Harry in the Canadian capital while he was promoting the 2017 Invictus Games back in May 2016, and that he "started texting her regularly" the following month. It was recently reported that Meghan and her Suits costar Patrick J. Adams would be leaving the show after the season is over — and now that Meghan is going to be a member of the royal family, she may be giving up her Hollywood career for good.
Her background has both Hollywood and academic roots.
Meghan was born and raised in Los Angeles. Her mother Doria is black, a clinical therapist, and a yoga instructor who graduated from the University of Southern California with a masters degree in social work. Her father, Thomas, is of Dutch and Irish descent, and is a retired Hollywood cinematographer and Emmy-award-winning television lighting director. He worked on the soap opera Santa Barbara and the sitcom Married With Children through the '80s and '90s.
She's a world traveler and a serious foodie, and wrote a lifestyle blog.
Meghan has a love for food is so strong, it was written into Suits as one of her character's traits. She documented her culinary interests — as well as her world travels — on her lifestyle blog, The Tig, which she shut down in April 2017. She explained the site as "a hub for the discerning palate — those with a hunger for food, travel, fashion and beauty," and often features recipes, style, and interviews with celebrities and tastemakers.
She's a divorcée.
Meghan dated Trever Engelson for seven years before they tied the knot in September 2011. They split in May 2013 and were officially divorced a few months later.
She's a huge supporter of pet adoption.
Meghan has two rescue dogs, Bogart and Guy, whom she regularly shares photos of on Instagram with the caption #adoptdontshop. In an interview with Harry for the BBC after their engagement, Meghan revealed that one of her dogs is staying with a close friend, while the other lives with them in London.
She has a long history of activism and philanthropic work.
Meghan has said that her mother raised her "to be a global citizen, with eyes open to sometimes harsh realities." Over the years, she has advocated for women's rights and worked extensively as an advocate for UN Women and with the HeForShe campaign; she gave a speech for International Women's Day and has traveled to Rwanda on behalf of the organization. She also traveled to Afghanistan to support the troops overseas.
In January 2016, Meghan returned to Rwanda as global ambassador of World Vision to bring attention to their World Water Day efforts. While there, she spent time with children at a refugee camp, an experience she called "as inspiring and affirming as you can imagine."
Prince Harry is reportedly a fan of her humanitarianism: a source says "Harry loves that she is so into philanthropy," and, "One of the first things they spoke about was all the work she does with shelter animals. He loves that she's so caring."