A Bold Conversation with a Publishing Powerhouse

Gail Rebuck DBE was the CEO of Penguin Random House for 22 Years. We hosted a live interview in partnership with Veuve Clicquot on what she learned from three decades in media and publishing.

By The Stack World

19 May 2023

ast night in Piccadilly Circus, Stack World Founder Sharmadean Reid and publishing powerhouse Dame Gail Rebuck came together to discuss the trajectory of Rebuck's career as one of the UKs most powerful women and influential leaders.

Marking the beginning of a year long partnership between The Stack World and Veuve Clicquot bringing a unique perspective on women in the workplace and promoting the luxury champagne retailers Bold Conversation Series with audacious leaders.

Held within the Solaire Culture space, Veuve Clicquot’s first ever globally traveling exhibition. Featuring over 250 years of the Maisons unique heritage and includes work by nine female artists inspired by the entrepreneurial spirit of the brands matriarch Madame Clicquot.

Read on to find out more about the career and trajectory of Baroness Rebuck as well as see inside the evening.

Rebuck began her career working for several independent publishers before putting her own funds into her own publishing company Century. Her first role was as a production assistant, before moving on to become an editor.

In 1985 Century merged with Hutchison, and in 1989 it was acquired by Random House UK. Rebuke was then appointed as Chair and Chief Executive of the company.

Rebuck has been named among the top five people in the British Book industry, as well as being named among the ten most powerful women in the UK by BBC’s Woman’s Hour.

She was appointed a CBE as part of the 2000 New Year Honours and in 2009, she was promoted to DBE in the Birthday Honours.

In February 2025 she was named Chair of the Council at the world renowned Royal College of Art, having joined the council in 1999.

Just over ten years ago, it was announced that Rebuck would become a Labour Peer in the House of Lords, taking the title Baroness Rebuck in the London Borough of Camden.

In 2016, she was honored with a painting created by Scottish artist Jennifer McRae, which is now a part of the portrait gallery's permanent collection. The Director of the gallery, Nicholas Cullinan described the painting as “a thoughtful portrayal of one of Britain’s most influential publishers.”

Baroness Rebuck is also the co-founder of World Book Day, which according to data has resulted in 42% of UK children taking more time to read, and nearly half of school-age children saying they felt they had more choice. As of last year, 96.9% of UK children have heard of World Book Day testament to its far-reaching impacts.

The Short Stack

Bold Conversations are key to pushing women leaders forward.

By The Stack World

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