More than 100 struggling residents in Atlanta, GA no longer have to worry about their past-due electricity and gas bills thanks to entertainer Steve Harvey and entrepreneur Pinky Cole (the CEO of thriving Atlanta-based business Slutty Vegan). Through their respective organizations—The Steve and Marjorie Harvey Foundation and The Pinky Cole Foundation—the duo partnered with utilities company Georgia Power to bring the residents’ bills up to date and restore power before the new year. “With millions of Americans at risk of losing power as massive unpaid bills pile up, it was necessary for us to work with the Pinky Cole Foundation and Georgia Power to pay the turn-off notices for some struggling Georgia Power customers to give some relief,” Sharon Page, Executive Director of the Steve and Marjorie Harvey Foundation, said. “With Mr. and Mrs. Harvey relocating back to Atlanta, Georgia, their goal is to be a blessing and continue to help those in need, especially during these unprecedented times.”
Cole created The Pinky Cole Foundation as a way to assist underserved communities in Atlanta and empower generations of color to thrive in financial and entrepreneurial pursuits. “Giving back is the core of who we are and what we do. I am excited to team up with The Steve & Marjorie Harvey Foundation and Georgia Power to provide the gift of electricity and gas to those in need. We are looking forward to this continuing partnership,” Cole said. “This is another way we are collectively using our platforms to pour into the communities in which we serve and my personal way of saying thank you to the communities that support me year-round.”
Cole launched the Slutty Vegan food truck in August 2018, selling provocatively named vegan burgers made with an Impossible Burger patty that is stacked with various toppings and slathered with a secret sauce. After the truck drew five-hour lines of more than 500 hungry guests waiting to be “sluttified,” Cole opened her first brick-and-mortar location in Atlanta in January 2019—attracting 1,200 customers on opening day. Last summer, Cole opened the second Slutty Vegan brick-and-mortar location in Jonesboro, GA. In October, Slutty Vegan expanded to a third location in the Edgewood neighborhood in Atlanta—known as the childhood neighborhood of civil rights icon Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Cole is currently expanding the business to additional locations (including its first outpost outside of Georgia in Birmingham, AL) and into new concepts (such as Bar Vegan inside of Ponce City Market food hall in Atlanta).
Throughout her growing success, Cole has helped her community in a variety of ways through her foundation, including helping pay the tuition balances of 30 Clark Atlanta University students last year in an effort to help them stay in school; feeding essential workers during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic; giving formerly incarcerated youth job opportunities; and helping Americans register to vote last year through a national campaign backed by music legend Jermaine Dupri.