The “Orange Is the New Black” actress is among several accomplished women featured in the September issue of British Vogue, which was guest-edited by the Duchess of Sussex. Cox told People in an interview published Monday that she learned of Meghan’s participation when she received a call from British Vogue’s editor-in-chief, Edward Enninful.
“I did not find that out until last week,” Cox said. Enninful “called me at 9:30 in the morning and he’s like, ‘I have someone on the phone for you,’ and it was the Duchess of Sussex.”
She continued, “She was so lovely. She just thanked me for being an inspiration and to keep it up.”
Meghan worked with Enninful, British Vogue’s first black editor, to create the issue titled, “Forces for Change.” The theme aims to highlight 15 women “from all walks of life, each driving impact and raising the bar for equality, kindness, justice and open-mindedness,” a statement from the official Sussex Royal Instagram account read.
Along with Cox, other cover stars include Yara Shahidi, Gemma Chan, Adut Akech Bior, Jane Fonda and Sinéad Burke.
Meghan, who chose not to be on the cover, described the guest-editing experience as “rewarding, educational and inspiring,” according to the statement.
“To deep dive into this process, working quietly behind the scenes for so many months, I am happy to now be able to share what we have created,” she said.
The Duchess of Sussex became the first person to ever guest-edit the publication’s September issue, generally considered the most important issue of the year for fashion magazines.
Cox, who became the first openly transgender person to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy in an acting category in 2014, wrote on Instagram that she was “overwhelmed and overjoyed” to be featured on the groundbreaking cover.
“Being on the cover of Vogue magazine has been a dream of mine since I was a child,” she wrote. “To get to share this cover with this group of women who inspire me, who are truly forces for change is deeply humbling.”
Cox told People that Meghan, a longtime advocate for women’s rights, has been a “huge inspiration.”
“Yes, as an African American member of the royal family, but I think a lot about Prince Harry’s mother, Princess Diana, and what she meant to so many people,” she said. “She wanted to help and be of service to the world — it feels like Prince Harry chose a partner who embodies so much of what his mother stood for.”
She continued, “Certainly the duchess is her own person, but I think about what it means to be of service. I feel like that’s what she feels called to do. And I think that’s a beautiful thing.”
The “Forces for Change” issue is set to hit newsstands on Friday.