Ruby Wax OBE is a comedian, writer and mental health campaigner, who officially opened Staffordshire University’s Centre of Excellence in Healthcare Education in September 2016.
Ruby’s career in entertainment saw her performing in the Royal Shakespeare Company for six years before joining the BBC for 25 years, where she worked on a variety of programmes written and performed by herself. She has also performed her own one-woman shows around the world, touring the UK, America, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand.
Ruby began sharing her experiences of depression after a national poster campaign for Comic Relief. In telling her story about living with the disease, she was invited to TEDGlobal in 2012, where she gave a talk on mental illness and the surrounding stigma.
In 2013, Ruby attained a Master’s Degree in Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy from the University of Oxford. She also has a Master’s in Psychotherapy from Regent’s College, London. She speaks at Parliament and Downing Street to raise money for neuroscience research and breaking the stigma, and she is an ambassador for MIND and SANE charities, as well as sits on the board of the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families.
As a professional public speaker, Ruby has given presentations at Google, MI5, EBay, Skype, Apple and other leading businesses. She is the author of two best-selling books, Sane New World and A Mindfulness Guide for the Frazzled, which combine neuroscience, mindfulness and comedy. Ruby has had two international tours covering the same topics, with Frazzled continuing around the UK throughout 2017.
The Black Dog Tribe social networking website was founded by Ruby in 2011, with SANE taking over the running of the community at the end of 2012, continuing to provide information and support for those suffering with mental health issues. Ruby is also currently launching Frazzled Cafes, in partnership with Marks and Spencer, providing meeting spaces for anyone who is ‘frazzled’, not just those with mental health problems.
Ruby was awarded an OBE for Services to Mental Health in 2015.
In 2018, Ruby's book "How to Be Human: The Manual" was published, adding to her growing published collection.
As of May 2019, Ruby Wax, OBE, was appointed Chancellor of The University of Southampton.
The Award of Honorary Doctor of Staffordshire University is bestowed upon Ruby in recognition of her exploration of the inner workings of the mind, her campaigning on mental health issues and her efforts to help others through her best-selling books and social projects.