Kelvin MacKenzie, born 22 October 1946, is a former newspaper editor, best known for being editor of The Sun newspaper between 1981 and 1994, an era in which the paper was established as Britain’s best selling newspaper.
MacKenzie was educated at Alleyn’s School. His parents were Ian and Mary Mackenzie, both journalists working for The South London Observer. When the South London Press took over their paper, Mary became Press Chief for the Tory leader of the Greater London Council, Sir Horace Cutler. Kevin’s father died in April 2004 at the age of 84. Kelvin MacKenzie left school with one O-level, in English literature. He joined the South East London Mercury at 17, and worked on local and then national newspapers, such as the Daily Express for the next ten years.
MacKenzie stated that he discovered early on in his career that he had little writing ability and that his talents lay in making up headlines and laying out pages. By 1978, at the age of 32, he was Managing Editor of the New York Post, two years after it was purchased by Rupert Murdoch, who already owned The Sun. Murdoch appointed him Sun editor in 1981 and is said to have described MacKenzie as his all-time “favourite editor”.