In the Summer of 2018, Baltimore native Pinky Cole established a vegan food service in the West End community of Atlanta, Georgia. If you've ever been to the West End then you know this is where the real magic happens in the A. This seasoned side of the city is home to the Atlanta University Center - Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College, Morris Brown College and Spelman College. The area is not filled with million dollars homes or high-end restaurants but that was the point for Pinky. Her vision was to offer healthier food options in a neighborhood lacking such alternatives. And so the Slutty Vegan was born. With one food truck, Pinky offered soulful vegan meals at reasonable prices to the masses. And when I say to the masses ..... I mean to the MASSES honey. People from all over stand in line like they are waiting for Jesus to offer a blessing in the form of a meal. Black folks eating vegan food ... who would have ever thought it! Pinky though it and carried the phrase "vegan is the new black" behind her thriving business.
Unfortunately, I am virgin to her works and never had the pleasure of indulging in her One Night Stand vegan burger. Yet, I adore this business as an inspiration for black female entrepreneurs. Here are my top 5 reasons I stan Slutty Vegan.
1. Her name is Pinky.
Let's have an honest moment .... raise your hand if you have ever witnessed the stigma of having a unique name or what some would refer to as a black name * slowly raises hand*
The fear of being labeled ghetto or unemployable over a name is real.
Pinky's acceptance of her name (whether a nickname or government) gives others the opportunity to say kick rocks and blow bubbles while I cash this check. And make sure you spell my name right .
2. She wears red locs.
Recently, Black Twitter went in on Jay-Z.s neglect in green lighting his company and the NFL to give a sizable donation to a Chicago charity known as the Crushers Club. Old photos of the charities founder/executive director resurfaced where we see her smiling while cutting the locs of a young black male. With kindergarten scissors in hand, the caption stated that he was ready for a better life. A better life? To insinuate that a better life comes with the removal of locs ... DEFINITELY not a good look.
As a woman of color with locs, seeing Pinky establish a reputable business with illuminating red locs is enough to make you stand up and do a jig. Breaking societal ideas and changing the narrative for black women adds to the empowerment of this black owned business.
3. The name of her business.
I am sure there are several people who love the idea of a Black woman turning a vision into a thriving business but secretly they wish she did not have the word "slut" in the name of her business. Old southern belles are clutching their pearls and whispering in the pews. Why did she have to name it slutty? Why are there sexual references? Who raised this young woman? My Lawd in heaven!
I pose this question to those individuals ... do you think a black woman named Pinky who brings in millions of dollars cares about your judgement in the name of her business? ..... EXACTLY!
4. She is an HBCU grad giving back.
I'm sure you are reading this at the job or hiding in the bathroom from your kids so I will leave the link below if want all the details BUT what I want you guys to know is that Pinky, a Clark Atlanta graduate, helped to pay off the balance for several current CAU students. This is a level we all aspire to be at, In the words of Rev. Charles Goodman Jr. at Tabernacle Baptist Church, "Because I've been blessed, I'm going to a blessing." Now read my last note then grab a tissue and watch the clip below because it's a tear jerker.
5. Last but certainly not least ... she's a lady of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc.
There is nothing better than witnessing Greeks who are about that action!
Salute to Pinky Cole. A true inspiration and physical representation of black girl magic and power. Let her be your inspiration today.
Link to Pinky Cole giving to CAU students:
Link to Slutty Vegan:
Link to article on Jay-Z and The Crushers Club:
Picture from CNN Travel - Cameron Mitchell