Mary Pryor is a passionate media expert currently splitting her time between Los Angeles and New York.
Originally from Detroit, the University of Michigan graduate has an eclectic range of talents ranging from automotive design and electrical engineering to music and digital marketing. She's worked at a variety of agencies, music companies and media outlets, including Rolling Stone, CBS News and VaynerMedia.
As Co-founder of Cannaclusive, she utilizes her extensive digital media experience as an advocate in the cannabis space for underrepresented populations. Together with her other co-founders, including Tonya Rapley-Flash, she’s on a mission to make it easier for brands to communicate with diverse audiences and ensure that minority consumers are not an afterthought, but a valued ally in the fight for legalization and destigmatization.
We caught up with Mary to get her take on what motivates her, working as a woman in cannabis and issues of inclusion and representation.
1. Why did you get involved in Cannaclusive? What motivates you?
Seeing a lack of Black, Latinx, Asian and people of color at events -- working at companies, marketed properly, and authentically represented in the cannabis space [is my primary motivation to do this work].
2. What is it like being a woman in the cannabis space?
It can be very, very interesting. As women, we do unite pretty well and often when it comes to supporting each other. That is the best part. We have to deal with a lot of mansplaining in the space.
3. What is your advice to those in cannabis?
[My advice is] to not give up. This road isn't easy, but the plant provides so much and it can be a great way to foster community.
4. Cannaclusive is also focused on inclusion. How do you feel about inclusion in cannabis currently and what are you doing to work toward that?
We want inclusive boards, equity, and representation at the front of the space. This plant is indigenous...wiping that cultural aspect away along with the influence of African and Latinx culture is wrong.
Photo via Instagram