Sophie, Countess of Wessex, 54, officially became a member of the Royal Family back in 1999, after marrying Prince Edward. Now, she spends her time as a working royal – supporting the monarch and attending royal engagements. Sophie is also a patron of a number of causes, such as 100 Women in Finance, Breast Cancer Society, and Meningitis Now. In fact, Sophie is a patron of more than 70 charities and organisations.
She undertakes hundreds of visits to schools, universities, military bases, and charity headquarters each year, in order to learn more about their work, as well as highlight it to the wider world.
What did the Countess do prior to becoming a working royal?
The royal – born Sophie Helen Rhys-Jones – was educated at Dulwich College Preparatory School, Kent College School for Girls, Pembury, and West Kent College.
Following her time at school, Sophie embarked on a career in public relations.
During this time of her life, she worked for a variety of firms.
She went on to open her own PR agency, something which she co-ran for five years.
Earlier this month, it was announced that Sophie would take on a new role from her father-in-law, Prince Philip.
The Duke of Edinburgh had previously been the patron for the Chartered Management Institute.
However, the 97-year-old has since retired from the role, with Sophie taking it on instead.
A tweet on the Royal Family Twitter account read: “The Duke of Edinburgh has officially handed over the Patronage of The Chartered Management Institute to The Countess of Wessex.”
Following their nuptials, Sophie and Prince Edward took on a new royal title.
The pair are known as the Countess and Earl of Wessex.
How should you address Sophie, Countess of Wessex?
The Royal Family website shares some insight into the traditions of meeting royals.
It states: “There are no obligatory codes of behaviour when meeting The Queen or a member of the Royal Family, but many people wish to observe the traditional forms.
“For men this is a neck bow (from the head only) whilst women do a small curtsy. Other people prefer simply to shake hands in the usual way.”