She and the Earl married on 11 September 2010 in Dorset, gaining the titles of Countess of Shaftesbury, Baroness Ashley and Baroness Cooper.
More DetailsHide DetailsThe couple have three children. Their son Anthony Francis Wolfgang Ashley-Cooper was born on 24 January 2011. He is the only person in line of succession to the earldom as his father's heir apparent.
In 2010, Lord Shaftesbury was recognised as one of the top 20 young individuals in the UK, according to the Sunday Times Rich List.
More DetailsHide DetailsShaftesbury's was listed in 16th place, alongside singers Leona Lewis, Charlotte Church and Katherine Jenkins.
Dinah Ashley-Cooper, Countess of Shaftesbury, was born Dinah Streifeneder on 12 September 1980 in Munich. She is the daughter of Dr Fritz Streifeneder and Argentinian-born Renata Leander-Streifeneder. Her mother is a physiotherapist, while her father is a retired orthopaedic surgeon. She spent her early life in Rome, Italy.
In 2010, the 12th Earl and Countess of Shaftesbury began working together to develop a national charitable event, known as the Grand Shaftesbury Run, held on the grounds of the historic Shaftesbury Estate.
More DetailsHide DetailsThe inaugural run was launched on 12 June 2011. The run features two courses, a course and a half marathon (13.1 mi), in support of three charities, including Wings For Life, The Philip Green Memorial School, and the Victoria Education Centre and Sports College, Sparkle Appeal.
He first arrived in New York in his early twenties, where he contributed to the city's thriving electronic music scene. He came over from Britain to manage a trendy club, Arcspace, which was notable for its lack of a drinks licence. Making a virtue out of necessity, he drew a crowd that was more interested in music and dancing than getting drunk and created a loyal fan base.
Before succeeding to the earldom, Ashley-Cooper established himself as a successful entrepreneur, having set up and run a music events company in New York. He was in demand as a house DJ and music promoter in New York, London, and at Privilege in Ibiza, Spain. He has been professionally stylised as nick ac. He formed the notable collective ROBOTS in 2004 with several other New York DJs, establishing a weekly event at Club Deville. In the summer of 2006, he spent time in residency at Privilege Ibiza.
On 11 September 2010, Lord Shaftesbury married Dinah Streifeneder.
More DetailsHide DetailsProfessionally, the Countess of Shaftesbury is a veterinary surgeon. Together, they have interests in working to assist children with disabilities. Since inheriting the titles and estate, they have pursued the restoration of St Giles House, in the hope that it might revitalise the local community.
With the family's history and tradition for public service Lord Shaftesbury put his name forward as a candidate to become an elected Crossbench hereditary peer, on the death of the 4th Viscount Colville of Culross in April 2010 and the By-election in June which followed.
More DetailsHide DetailsThe eventual victor was the 9th Earl of Clancarty. He has since attempted to be elected as a crossbench peer in several subsequent by-elections in the House of Lords, without success.
On 29 August 2009, Shaftesbury participated in the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc (UTMB) TDS Sur les Traces des Ducs de Savoie mountain ultramarathon, which is the most difficult foot race in Europe.
More DetailsHide DetailsThe race takes place once a year in the Alps, across France, Italy and Switzerland. The distance is approximately 105 km, with a total elevation gain of around 6,700 m. He finished 29th in the race.
In March 2011, the earl finished his second 4 Desert race in the Atacama Desert of Chile, considered the driest place on earth. The seven day, race began on 3 March and ended on 10 March. In honour of the completion of this race, Shaftesbury was the recipient of the Spirit Award, presented by 4 Desert and Racing the Planet officials.
On 17 May 2009, Shaftesbury participated in his second desert race, running across the country of Namibia in the ultramarathon, Racing the Planet: Namibia.
More DetailsHide DetailsThe course is a seven-day, self-supported footrace that winds its way through huge sand dunes, deep canyons, mountain ranges and along the famous Skeleton Coast.
Shaftesbury's goal was to raise financial support for ChildLink. The funds raised by the earl directly helped cover the college fees and vital education for poor and orphaned children of South India. He finished 24th and raised £6282.69.
On 26 October 2008, Shaftesbury took part in his first endurance run with the 4 Deserts, which is a series of four, six-day, self-supported footraces across some of the most unwelcoming deserts on Earth.
More DetailsHide DetailsThese deserts include the Gobi in China, the Atacama in Chile, the Sahara Desert in Egypt and Antarctica. Each race is 250 kilometres long with the final race being The Last Desert, held in Antarctica. To qualify for the last race, runners must have successfully completed two of the other three races., he has completed the Sahara Desert race and the Atacama Desert in Chile, which was completed in March 2011.
The Sahara Race was a six-day, 250-kilometer footrace across the Sahara Desert of Egypt, which is the hottest desert on earth. The main obstacles faced include the relentless heat and soft sand dunes. Shaftesbury's goal included raising funds for AbleChildAfrica. He finished 31st in the race and raised £4000.90.
On 13 April 2008, Shaftesbury completed his first major run with team member and friend, Rob Jenkins, in the London Marathon.
More DetailsHide DetailsParticipation in the marathon served to benefit the charitable organisation, Phab Limited, which is a national charity working to promote and encourage disabled and non-disabled individuals live and work in an integrated and welcoming society. The 12th Earl trained with the goal to complete the course in under four hours. He completed the race in three hours and 20 minutes and raised £8657.
In 2008, Shaftesbury graduated from the London Business School, earning his Masters in Business Administration.
More DetailsHide DetailsWhile maintaining his musical interests, Lord Shaftesbury has also shown an interest in supporting charitable organisations, primarily those addressing the needs of children with disabilities.
In December 2009, Lord Shaftesbury suffered serious spinal injuries in a riding accident, crushing several vertebrae in the fall. While he experienced initial paralysis necessitating the use of a wheelchair, physical therapy has helped restore his health to the point where he is able to walk, with limitations.
Wimborne St Giles in East Dorset is the home base and centre of business of the Ashley-Coopers. The house possesses one of the finest private libraries in Great Britain. The Ashleys and Ashley-Coopers have made Wimborne St Giles their home since the 15th century. The small village of Wimborne St Giles rests within the family estate itself. The Ashley family arrived in Dorset, originally from Wiltshire, where they owned the manor of Ashley, since the 11th century. The first ancestor to reside in Wimborne St Giles was Robert Ashley (born c. 1415), fifth great grandfather of Anthony Ashley-Cooper, 1st Earl of Shaftesbury.
A month later, on 15 May 2005, Shaftesbury's brother, Anthony, the 11th Earl, died of a heart attack and the peerage devolved upon Nicholas.
More DetailsHide DetailsFollowing his brother's death, Shaftesbury relocated to his family home from New York City and assumed the responsibilities of the earldom. He also holds the subsidiary titles Baron Ashley and Baron Cooper.
Shaftesbury's father, Anthony Ashley-Cooper, 10th Earl of Shaftesbury, had been murdered in November 2004 by the brother of his third wife, Jamila M'Barek, but his body was not discovered until April 2005.
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