Lead Anchor, BBC World News America
Frequent Contributor, NBC’s Meet The Press
Co-Author of Womenomics: Write Your Own Rules For Success
Katty (pronounced CAT-TEE) Kay is the lead anchor of BBC World News America. Prior to taking over as lead anchor, Kay served as the Washington Correspondent for BBC since 2002.
Kay’s career with the BBC began in Zimbabwe in 1990 where she started filing radio reports for BBC World Service radio. From there she also covered the end of apartheid in South Africa.
Kay went on to work as a BBC correspondent in London, and later Tokyo, reporting on stories including the Kobe earthquake and the Japanese economic recession. She settled in Washington in 1996 when she took some time out of broadcast journalism to join The Times’ (the British newspaper) Washington bureau before returning to the BBC in 2002.
From Washington, Kay covers the full gamut of American and global affairs – reporting on U.S. elections, the White House, Congress, Wall Street, global economies and world trouble spots. Kay also witnessed and reported on the huge change in American policy and psyche brought on by the attacks of September 11. Kay was at the Pentagon just 20 minutes after a hijacked airplane flew into the building – one of her most vivid journalistic memories is of interviewing soldiers still visibly shaking from the attack.
In The New York Times 2009 best seller Womenomics: Write Your Own Rules for Success, Kay and co-author Claire Shipman explore how women can create a professional life that meets their needs – and in the process creates more profitable companies with happier and more productive employees. She and Claire Shipman also co-authored The Confidence Code, published in April 2014.
Kay grew up all over the Middle East, where her father was posted as a British diplomat. She studied modern languages at Oxford then she went on to work for a brief period with the Bank of England. She speaks fluent French and Italian and also what she describes as ‘rusty Japanese’. Kay is married to Tom Carver, a strategic risk consultant. They live in Washington, DC with their four children.
What’s really going on in Washington? How will it affect you? Having covered Washington since 1996, Katty Kay reveals the politics behind the posturing and provides a clearer picture of what’s likely to happen with the many challenges facing the president and Congress– healthcare, industry regulation, immigration, tax reform, and more. As a Brit covering Washington, Kay offers a fresh outsider’s perspective and is perfectly positioned to ask and answer the questions facing the U.S. As for the bigger picture, she suggests lessons America can learn from other countries. Kay brings a unique perspective to the conversation and argues America’s problems are not economic, they are political – and they can be fixed.
The world is changing at lightning speed. It’s a world where many of the fastest growing economies are in Africa; where 300 million micro-bloggers challenge the supremacy of the Chinese state; and where one-third of the population of the Middle East is under 30. It’s a world where big challenges abound. As the European financial crisis eases, the social toll of high unemployment still threatens the Eurozone. America’s economy is showing signs of resurgence, but its politicians have locked horns to impede real progress. Tension in the South China Seas raises concerns about Beijing’s regional ambitions. And from Tunis to Damascus to Cairo we are still feeling the turmoil of the post-Arab Spring Middle East. Where is it headed? Global times call for global perspective. Katty Kay draws on her experience reporting from five different regions – North America, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Europe – to offer insights on where the world is heading and how it will impact you.
At the 2013 World Economic Forum in Davos, IMF Chief Christine Lagarde called the advancement of women the greatest economic opportunity of our time. She recognized what Kay calls “Womenomics,” the extraordinary value of women in the workforce. Global studies show that companies who employ more senior women make more money. Women control 83% of consumer purchases; in America they buy more cars than men. They tend to have more degrees and are ideally suited to the demands of our talent-driven economy. But too many women in their mid-30s hit the brick wall of kids versus career and decide to leave the workforce. We can’t afford to keep losing them. Kay marshals evidence from employers large and small to show how possible it is to help women meet the demands of family and career and keep these valuable contributors in the workforce. Flexible work schedules prove to be a win-win; when companies take the clocks off the wall and choose to measure output rather than input, they see productivity rise by an average of 40%. What starts as talent retention becomes a profit bonus any company would be happy to have. Kay’s talks give an inspirational boost to women and a practical guide to employers, drawing on her best-selling book and her experience of juggling a demanding career and four children.