Cherie Blair was born in Bury in 1954 but moved when very young to Liverpool where she grew up. The first member of her family to go to university, she studied law at the London School of Economics. Called to the Bar in 1976, she became a Queens Counsel in 1995 and was a founder member of Matrix Chambers. She sat as a Recorder, as part-time judges are known, from 1999-2015; she is also an accredited mediator and arbitrator.
Her fellow trainee at her first chambers was Tony Blair. The couple married in 1980 and have four children - the youngest, Leo, being the first child born to a serving Prime Minister for over a century.
As well as fighting for human rights in her professional career, Cherie is an active campaigner on equality and human rights issues. She has spoken across the world on both issues and also on the need for improved work/life balance for both women and men.
Mrs Blair published her autobiography: 'Speaking for Myself ' in 2008.
Later that year Cherie set up her charity; the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women. She believes that by empowering and supporting women around the world, they can play an increasingly important role in their economies and societies. The Foundation works with women in Africa, South Asia and the Middle East, helping them generate their own income and developing projects which encourage them to become successful and self sustaining entrepreneurs.
Cherie is also closely involved with over 20 charities with a special emphasis on those working with women, with children, and with those based on Merseyside. She is Honorary Vice President of Barnados, President of the Loomba Foundation, Patron of Scope and Patron of a number of charities, including Breast Cancer Care. She was an Ambassador for London 2012. Cherie has been a member of the Labour Party since she was 16.
Cherie was awarded a CBE in the 2013 New Year's Honours List for services to Women's Issues and to charity in the UK and Overseas.
Charities Cherie supports
Vice Chair of International Council on Women's Business Leadership
The Loomba Foundation
Breast Cancer Care
Asian Women of Achievement
European Federation of Black Women Business Owners
Stop the Traffik
Women of the Future Awards
Asian University for Women
Children and Young People
Believe to Achieve
The Michael Palin Centre Appeal for Stammering Children
Islington Music Centre
Home Start, Islington
Shakespeare Schools Festival
Noah's Ark Trust
Great Ormond Street Hospital Awards
Co-founder and Trustee of the Africa Justice Foundation
Honorary Chair of World Justice Project
Senior Vice President IBA Discrimination Committee
Howard League for Penal Reform
Family Mediators Association
The British Institute of Human Rights
Citizenship Foundation Advisory Board
Opportunity Now Awards
Rights and Humanity
Lord Slynn European Law Foundation
The London Legal Support Trust
Human Rights Watch
Visiting Professor, Open University
Greater London Fund for the Blind
The Lily Centre
Liverpool Cathedral Appeal
Community Foundation for Merseyside
Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral Appeal
Restoration of Appearance and Function Trust (RAFT)
Living Legends Awards
* Chancellor Emeritus and Honorary Fellow of Liverpool John Moores University
* Governor Emeritus and Honorary Fellow of the LSE and the Open University (DUniv.Open 1999)
* LLD (Hons) University of Liverpool (2003); Hon.DLitt UMIST (2003), LLD (Hons) University of Westminster.
* Doctor of Laws honoris causa, Roehampton University (2008) for her contribution to human rights.
* Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies and a Fellow of the International Society of Lawyers for Public Service.
* Member of the Global Task Force for UNICEF.
* Arbitrator for ACAS.
* Freeman of the City of London.
* The Goldfish Bowl (with Cate Haste), Chatto & Windus 2004
* The Negligence Liability of Public Authorities (with Dan Squires), OUP 2006
* Speaking for Myself, Little, Brown 2008