Honeysuckle Media is a Clio and social justice award-winning, female owned print and digital publication focusing on cannabis, gender and sexuality, racial politics, the environment, cannabis and pop culture, through cultural vectors. Through our lauded creative work, we produce campaigns with lasting impact on policy and education for marginalized groups. Our landmark initiatives have changed decades of New York advertising policy and been revolutionary in representing women-led and BIPOC-owned brands, bringing awareness to Indigenous and climate issues, and the legal cannabis industry.
Founded in Detroit in 2013 by Ronit Pinto, Honeysuckle was created to merge the crafts of journalism and film into an educational platform with a soul. The mission was to give voice to those not heard in traditional media, and to shed light on social issues such as prison reform and systemic oppression. Beginning first as a digitally-exclusive platform, Honeysuckle started expanding to print editions in 2015 when the company relocated its headquarters to New York. As our reportage of the cannabis sector increased from 2016 onward, we identified an audience and community need that had never been done before – bridging gaps between cannabis and mainstream issues, allowing the industry to form a lens through which other social questions could be explored. Embracing this idea, Honeysuckle scaled quickly, exponentially growing our readership and innovating new media avenues for stakeholders in the nascent space.
In 2018, Honeysuckle was the first to put cannabis and hemp brands on Times Square billboards for New Year’s Eve, a campaign that broke barriers and disrupted 80 years of prohibitive practice. Through subsequent years, we have achieved many other milestones, among them:
- Diversity in Cannabis with Lil Wayne (2021), a salute to women and BIPOC-owned brands that featured the first international Indigenous cannabis collaboration.
- Celebrate Plant Medicine (2021), the first psychedelics-themed billboard initiative in Times Square’s history, a collaboration with four women-owned brands including DoubleBlind Magazine, Susan Rockefeller’s Musings Magazine, and Rainbo Mushrooms.
- Indigenous Peoples Day (2021), the first Times Square campaign to officially honor IPD as President Biden formally recognized the holiday.
- Indigenous Cannabis 420 (2022), the second international Indigenous cannabis collaboration and the first campaign uniting five tribal nations in activations across New York State
- Indigenous Peoples Day (2022), the first multimedia blitz across NYS to honor Governor Hochul’s formal recognition of IPD, including the first cannabis-themed cab toppers
- Epic 420 New York (2023), multiple NY activations during the 420 week, including the launch of NYC’s first immersive cannabis museum THC NYC and a Times Square campaign with Cannabis Now and Royal Queen Seeds, marking the first time a European-owned cannabis brand has been featured on the platform.
Honeysuckle’s social justice reportage received the highest honors from the NYS government: a New York State Assembly Citation Award from Assembly Member Inez Dickens (70th District) for “significant contribution to the culture and community of NYC,” and then-State Senator Brian Benjamin (30th District) for our “progressive stance on social and economic issues which plague our society.”
In 2022, we won a Clio Award for our Empress State photoshoot, which spotlighted 26 women leading the East Coast cannabis industry, including NYS Cannabis Control Board Chair Tremaine Wright.
Today Honeysuckle is a nationally-distributed publication available in 500+ retailers with focus on eight major legal cannabis markets. Our print editions have also been spotlighted at events in Europe, Israel, and Japan, and at forums ranging from Cannes Film Festival to MJBizCon, the world’s largest international cannabis business conference. Our founder Ronit Pinto has spoken on global-facing platforms such as SXSW, Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference, and Microsoft’s Disruptive Startups Summit; among other honors, she received Green Market Report’s 2022 Women in Media Leadership Award and was named a 2023 AMNY Cannabis Power Player.
Our creative agency, Honey Studios offers innovative and ROI driven services in creative branding, print, digital, photography, video, OOH and events. Since its inception in 2103, Honeysuckle has pioneered many initiatives in plant medicine in NYC across their multi-platform offerings. Visit our creative agency @honeymagstudios for corporate and creative work in corporate photography, videography, events coverage and film.
Our Clio Award Winning Women in East Coast Cannabis Award!
We are thrilled to announce that Honeysuckle also won a Clio for our Empress State photo shoot in our Lil Wayne 420 print edition. This feature is a tribute to the many incredible women leading the East Coast cannabis industry, which you can read here. The spread represents formidable brands in the space such as Women Grow, Humble Bloom, Cannaclusive, On The Revel, TribeTokes, House of Puff, Rebelle, Her Highness and more. With concept and production by Honeysuckle’s founder Ronit Pinto, photography and video by Honeysuckle’s Creative Director Sam C. Long, and art direction by Geraldine Hessler of Rebelle, the shoot was a perfect amalgamation of visions.
Our Policy-Changing Billboard Campaigns
EurWeb / Electronic Urban Report: https://www.eurweb.com/2018/12/dasheeda-dawsons-the-weedhead-is-first-black-owned-cannabis-brand-featured-in-times-square/
Denver Business Journal: https://www.bizjournals.com/denver/news/2018/12/31/cannabis-ads-times-square-nye.html
Hemp Today: https://hemptoday.net/elixinol-times-square/
Daily Marijuana Observer: https://mjobserver.com/business/cbd-company-to-advertise-in-times-square-for-new-years-eve/
NutraLife Biosciences Press Release: https://nutralifebiosciences.com/selling-cannabis-or-hemp-on-times-square-florida-company-makes-marketing-history/
ON OUR FOUNDER
Thinking Outside the Bud https://www.thinkingoutsidethebud.com/podcast/015-ronit-pinto
Honeysuckle’s journalism aided in the compassionate release of DaReta Gail Stevenson, who was incarcerated for 22 years. In need of a life-saving bone marrow transplant for leukemia and positive for COVID, DeReta Steverson, incarcerated at the California Institution for Women (CIW), was still not eligible for compassionate release in California, even under the state’s much-hyped release program, and was instead accruing medical debt and traumatized by the healthcare she does receive; from denial of treatment to being shackled while receiving chemotherapy
“Due to the publication in Honeysuckle magazine approximately 8000 signatures were able to be collected with the hyperlink being added. The power of Journalism is vital and telling the story changes the narrative. Medical Release for DaReta Gail Steverson W81914,” Shawanna Vaughn, founder of Silent Cry
Honeysuckle received the New York State Assembly’s Citation Award from Assemblywoman Inez E. Dickens of the 70th district for “significant contribution to the culture and community of New York City,” and another from State Senator Brian Benjamin for “a progressive stance on the social and economic issues that plague our society.”
We were a recent recipient of the GlobalGiving Red Backpack made possible by The Spanx by Sara Blakely Foundation. “We’re proud to announce the grantees of The Red Backpack Fund. They have successfully undergone GlobalGiving’s rigorous vetting process, and we believe this grant will help them continue to thrive, despite the shifting economic circumstances brought on by this crisis,” said GlobalGiving CEO Alix Guerrier. “The world needs more women-led organizations who are a key force in overcoming COVID-19 and establishing a better normal.”