Activist. Entrepreneur. Sommelier.
For our next #WomenCrushingIt in celebration of Women’s History Month, we’re raising our glass to Grace Mahary. Grace is a woman who brings wisdom, an inspiring work ethic and strength into everything she does. She started her career in the fashion industry modeling for international companies such as Chanel, Vogue and Prada. As an Eritrean-Canadian model, she has leveraged her platform -- and over fifteen years in the fashion industry -- to focus on what she believes in most: Equality.
Grace is a global activist and entrepreneur, and the founder and executive director of Project Tsehigh. Over the last six years, Grace and her team at Project Tsehigh have focused on researching and finding renewable energy sources for countries who are lacking the infrastructure. It was after visiting Eritrea, in Eastern Africa, that she realized how many people were living in under-resourced communities without power, driving her to find ways to provide solar energy solutions for communities in need. She’s dedicated, driven and crushing it across many different domains.
In addition to her activism, she’s also a certified sommelier. As co-owner of Chulita in Venice, California, she curates wine lists and wine experiences within different spaces using her knowledge of wine, keen palate and great taste. Grace is a change agent and we’ve watched in awe as she has focused on leaving the world a better place than she found it, while enjoying the journey along the way.
Meet Grace Mahary
Robin: When the pandemic subsides, who are you raising your first glass with and why?
Grace: My husband, family, and closest friends I’ve missed over this time.
Robin: How is the 2021 International Women's Day theme #ChooseToChallenge meaningful to you? What has challenged you as a woman of color in a male-dominated industry?
Grace: I love to see the status quo challenged especially when it means freeing up space for those who’ve been marginalized in society. There are countless challenges, but knowing your worth and building confidence have helped me visualize my place in the world.
Robin: Who has inspired you to break the rules or think beyond them as a woman in your industries?
Grace: My mother
Robin: How would you define your tribe or sisterhood that has supported you during your path?
Grace: They are my outer brain that I consult regularly!
Robin: What advice would you give to women who want to pursue nontraditional careers that combine their work and passions?
Grace: To not doubt themselves, to dive into as much research as possible and to start! (You’ll figure it out as you go.)
Robin: How has the pandemic changed your work, industry and outlook?
Grace: It definitely has slowed things down and has made working from home possible. I never thought I could love or live in stillness as I do now.
Robin: What are you most excited about in your work right now?
Grace: Continuing to shine light on underrepresented and sustainable artists, winemakers, and game changers whilst making personal discoveries along the way.
Robin: Which wine varieties or styles are most often on your table? Do you have a favorite MSC wine, and a recipe, cuisine or mood to pair with it?
Grace: We’re always exploring! My favorite MSC wine is the Central Coastal Red Blend. It's silky and smooth, definitely my Friday night vibe.