Senator Frances Black grew up on Charlemont Street in Dublin as the youngest of the late Patty and Kevin's five children. It was a very musical family, and she began singing with her older siblings, Shay, Michael, Mary and Martin, known as The Black Family, when she was 17. She became an award-winning Irish singer, and a pure vocal tone and an energetic stage presence made her one of Ireland’s most popular singers. She has released many award-winning albums and continues to tour and perform around the world.
In 2009, Frances founded a charitable organisation that is very close to her heart called The RISE Foundation, which is an organisation set up to support family members who have a loved one with an alcohol, drug or gambling problem. The RISE family programme helps to reduce anxiety, stress and confusion for the family members. It promotes healing by identifying how addictive behaviour can impact the family and what family members can do to take care of themselves. It is her work with RISE and her collaboration with other community and charitable organisations that inspired Frances to run for the Seanad, as she believes that there is a need to represent these services and be the voice of those who are vulnerable in society. She was delighted to be elected to the 25th Seanad Éireann in April 2016.
Social Entrepreneurs Ireland (SEI) awarded Frances the prestigious Social Entrepreneur of the Year award in 2010 and again in 2011. The RISE Foundation also won a Vodafone World of Difference award in 2010. She was internationally recognised in 2015 when she won the Emerald Spirit Award 2015 in New York. This unique award is for professionals active in the field of family recovery from addiction. As such, it honours an under‐recognised community of dedicated professional and advocates who work with family members, including children and adult children of alcoholics collaterally affected by the family disease of addiction.
On April 2016 Frances was elected to the Seanad having been nominated by the Independent Broadcasters of Ireland. Frances is the first independently elected woman to the Seanad.
Frances is married and has two grown-up children, Eoghan and Aoife Scott, both of whom are musicians.