HQ has scooped the first memoir by June Sarpong, charting her life from early childhood in Ghana to a career as broadcaster and campaigner.
Executive publisher Lisa Milton acquired world rights to The Only One in the Room from Caroline Michel at PFD. It will be released in hardback, e-book and audio in summer 2021.
The blurb states: “Sharing her experiences from her early childhood in Ghana, moving to London's East End and her experiences as a black woman working in the media for over 25 years, June will be opening the doors to the different rooms of her life: from the classroom to the boardroom. Often the only one in the room, June has been at the forefront of inclusivity, breaking down barriers and advocating for equality, her memoir will be critical to the ongoing fight to end racism.”
Sarpong is an established broadcaster and activist who made history in October 2019 by becoming the first Director of Creative Diversity at the BBC. She began her career at Kiss 100, before moving on to Channel 4’s “T4” where her broadcasting career took off. She has worked extensively with HRH Prince Charles for 10 years as an ambassador for his charity the Prince’s Trust. Sarpong received an OBE in the 2020 new year honours list for services to broadcasting.
She is the author of two other books published by HQ, her 2017 call to arms Diversify and 2018's The Power of Women. HQ will also be publishing Sarpong's “passionate polemic” The Power of Privilege—How White People Can Challenge Racism in paperback and e-book on 1st October 2020 to mark National Inclusion Week and Black History Month.
Sarpong said: “I am delighted to again be working with Lisa Milton and the team at HQ. Lisa is committed to helping to diversify the world of publishing by ensuring that different voices are heard. I couldn't think of a better home for The Only One in the Room. I look forward to a continued purpose driven relationship with HQ.”
Milton added: “Our HQ mission is to be the most inclusive list in commercial publishing. Diversify was one of the first non-fiction titles we published at HQ. It was not only a bestseller, but it also won awards. I’m honoured to be June’s publisher. With her memoir, I know we’re going to continue to change the world."