“Slutty Vegan” founder credits her formerly incarcerated father for her entrepreneurial hustle


June 13, 2023

In a recent profile in The New Yorker, Aisha “Pinky” Cole — owner and operator of Slutty Vegan, a plant-based burger restaurant chain that started in Atlanta, Georgia — talks about the influence of her formerly incarcerated father:

“‘I got my entrepreneurial hustle from my dad, the most brilliant man I’ve ever known,’ Cole told me one Thursday in February, as we sat eating hot ‘chicken’ sandwiches and drinking mojitos at Bar Vegan, a small-plates Slutty Vegan spinoff in Atlanta’s Ponce City Market, a converted Sears building that’s now home to dozens of high-end venders. The day Cole was born, her father, Stanley, a Jamaican immigrant, was sentenced to thirty years in prison for his role as the leader of what prosecutors described as a ‘large-scale cocaine distribution ring,’ whose proceeds he laundered through fronts including a Baltimore night club called Exodus. ‘He did what he had to do to provide for his family,’ Cole said. After his imprisonment, she and her four siblings were raised by her mother, Ichelle, also from Jamaica, who worked in a bank and as a McDonald’s cashier to support the family on her own.”

Read the whole profile at The New Yorker.