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Meet Prince William and Kate Middleton's inner circle who may be part of the team helping them navigate her cancer diagnosis

Meet Prince William and Kate Middleton's inner circle who may be part of the team helping them navigate her cancer diagnosis
  • Kate Middleton and Prince William may lean on their inner circle following her cancer diagnosis.

  • The Princess of Wales, 42, said she is undergoing preventive chemotherapy in a video on Friday.

  • Here's a look at the team that could be supporting the Prince and Princess of Wales.

Kate Middleton has put a firm stop to "Katespiracy."

After months of rumors running rife about her well-being and whereabouts following a "planned abdominal surgery" in January, Kensington Palace shared a video where the Princess of Wales announced she has cancer and is undergoing preventive chemotherapy. In the video, shared across the palace's social media accounts, Kate said her diagnosis came after surgery when her medical team discovered she had "cancerous cells."

"I am well and getting stronger every day by focusing on the things that will help me heal in my mind, body, and spirits," Kate said in the video, adding that she asks that she and her family be given "time, space and privacy."

Still, in the months that Kate spent out of the public eye recovering and starting her treatment, many have expressed curiosity about who is advising her and William. Interest doubled when the royal household posted a listing for a communications assistant on Thursday — a role with a starting salary of £25,642, around $32,311.

Whoever gets the job will join a team dedicated to guiding Prince William and Princess Kate through Kate's diagnosis. Here's a look at who the inner circle is so far.

Kate's private secretary is a palace veteran

A month after Kate underwent surgery, she hired a new private secretary: Lieutenant Colonel Tom White. People Magazine reported White was enlisted to run her staff in late February.

While he's a new addition to Kate's inner circle, White is no stranger to the British monarchy. Before his latest posting, he served Queen Elizabeth II from 2020 to 2022 as her equerry, a position within the royal household similar to a personal assistant.

Lieutenant Colonel Tom White previously worked as Queen Elizabeth II's equerry.
Lieutenant Colonel Tom White previously worked as Queen Elizabeth II's equerry.Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

White was the first "commando" to be appointed equerry to the Queen, The Times of London reported. The outlet added that he joined the Royal Marines in 2007 and was in his 30s when he got the job as the Queen's equerry.

White's new role as Kate's private secretary came around when Kensington Palace released a rare statement on February 29 reminding the public that it had made "clear in January" what the Princess of Wales' recovery timeline would be and that it would "only be providing significant updates."

Meanwhile, William's private secretary is relatively new to the royal scene

Like Kate, William also hired a new private secretary recently. In early February, The Telegraph was the first to report that the Prince of Wales had hired Ian Patrick for the job of being his right-hand man.

Patrick is a seasoned diplomat, having spent eight years working for the British Foreign Office. That knowledge likely will come in handy as William's role representing the British monarchy abroad expands.

The new private secretary also has experience in international peacekeeping and has worked in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Before taking up the mantle as William's private secretary, he also served as a trustee for the Crohn's & Colitis UK charity.

Kate Middleton in long blue dress walking with Lee Thompson in a grey suit and yellow tie.
Lee Thompson has worked for William and Kate as their communications secretary since 2022.Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

Kate and William have a team of comms people around them

Adam Born is the senior communications secretary for the Prince and Princess of Wales.

Lee Thompson has served as their communications secretary since 2022, according to his LinkedIn. Before that, he worked as a vice president of communications at NBCUniversal and CNBC.

Edwina Iddles is the deputy communications secretary for William and Kate. She took on the role in 2021 after first joining The Royal Foundation of The Prince and Princess of Wales as chief communication officer in 2020, per LinkedIn. Before joining the royals, she worked as a parliamentary assistant to British MP Caroline Dinenage and also held positions with both the EU and the UK Home Office.

Rhea Vernon serves as a communications officer for William and Kate.

Kate Middleton in a black and white checkered coat holding a bouquet of white flowers and talking to Natalie Barrows, who is in a navy coat.
Natalie Barrows, an assistant private secretary, to Kate Middleton, has been pictured with her at several public events over the years.Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

They also have other close aides and personal assistants

Natalie Barrows, who served as Kate's assistant private secretary, has been called her "right-hand woman" and has been pictured assisting the Princess of Wales at several public events in the past, including as recently as last year.

Natasha Archer has served as Kate's stylist for years and has worked for the royal family since at least 2007, according to her LinkedIn. Archer is married to Chris Jackson, who has photographed the royal family for years for Getty Images.

Two women in heels and dresses holding suitcases and garment bags.
Natasha Archer, picture here on the right, has served as Kate Middleton's personal assistant and stylist for years.Dominic Lipinski - Pool/Getty Images

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