Desirée Clarke-Noble joined RBC in 2014 and since then has not only worked hard to build RBC’s reputation in the market, but has also sought to support marketing professionals and, all the while, promote diversity and inclusion at the firm. Find out why RBC chose Desirée as its role model.
Originally from New Zealand, as Managing Director and Head of Brand and Marketing for Europe and Asia Pacific, Desirée Clarke-Noble manages RBC Capital Market’s brand, promotion and sponsorship partnerships, as well as the company’s corporate social responsibility activities.
On top of this role, Desirée is a member of RBC’s UK Diversity Leadership Council, the Capital Markets European Mentoring Programme Committee, is a new appointed Executive Sponsor of RBC’s Multicultural Employee Alliance (MEA) UK and, until recently, was Co-Chair of RBC’s gender diversity network, RWomen UK.
Desirée gives back to the marketing community of which she is proud to be part and is a Liveryman with the Worshipful Company of Marketors; a Trustee of the Marketor’s Trust Charity with a focus on supporting community causes and enabling creatives to pursue careers in marketing; and is Secretary of the Marketor’s Aim One Committee to build greater connectivity between the civic and corporate City, with a focus on diversity and inclusion.
In 2021 Desirée was appointed Advisory Board Member for The Barbican Centre to help create it better connect with the corporate City and create a more inclusive culture that is accessible to all – particularly important as it heads into its 40th anniversary in 2022 and as we emerge from the pandemic.
Even in her day job, Desirée has sought to achieve more. The charitable partnerships alone are impressive given they include the firm’s flagship RBC Race for the Kids in partnership with Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH), the Royal Parks Half Marathon, presented by RBC, and RBC Ride for the Kids supporting SportsAid. During the pandemic, Desirée’s leadership involved creating the first ever global virtual RBC Race for the Kids campaign. From green light to launch in just six weeks, the campaign benefited 36 youth charities across the globe, raising over C$8.8 million (circa £5.2 million) and is being repeated in 2021. RBC’s funding also helped the Royal Parks Half to go virtual in April 2021 and the team has also deepened its partnership with SportsAid, which provides financial and personal support to 50 young athletes every year. The work was flagged to the Women in Banking and Finance (WIBF) team as pivotal in virtually uniting RBC colleagues and clients, while demonstrating RBC’s commitment to the community through a global pandemic and delivering global impact.
In early 2015, Desirée launched the Principal Partnership between RBC and The Old Vic, the not-for-profit theatre, and this vital support has enabled the theatre to stage more than 35 main stage productions, 20 of which were world premieres and 17 have transferred to the West End, Broadway and beyond. The partnership has deepened and RBC also supports the theatre’s Take the Lead programme which helps to teach business skills and confidence to young people from local communities and the RBC Emerging Artist Project sponsors The Old Vic’s Emerging Talent Programme, nurturing theatre makers of tomorrow
Despite having been granted the Freedom of the City of London in 2019, Desirée described how she felt “absolutely thrilled, stunned, humbled and utterly chuffed” when she was told of her selection by RBC to represent the firm and be its role model for the WIBF’s Recognition of Achievement scheme.
In announcing the recognition, David Thomas, CEO for RBC Europe, stated: “I’m delighted that RBC is able to recognise Desirée’s exceptional commitment and dedication to the advancement of diversity and inclusion, both within RBC and across the City and local communities. She is tireless in her pursuit of better opportunities for women and all diverse groups through her work with the City of London’s gender networks, her leadership of RBC’s RWomen network, and her involvement in community partnerships with GOSH, The Old Vic, Royal Parks and SportsAid. Congratulations on this well-deserved recognition.”
What is clear to the WIBF team is that Des leads by example. The RBC team cited how much passion she brings to her role, inspiring her team to achieve their very best, and how she is seen as a champion in unlocking the potential in people through trust and alignment on outcomes.
Outside of work and her volunteering, Desirée is a keen runner, triathlete and cyclist who has completed 50+ marathons, ultramarathons, triathlons and an ironman, and has used the races to raise funds for global charitable causes.