Maria McDowell

Founder , lollipop mentoring

Maria McDowell boasts an illustrious career spanning over two decades in the advertising industry. With a proven track record of leadership and adept management of teams and departments, she has consistently strived to make a positive impact throughout her professional journey.  As an industry veteran, Maria has encountered the unique challenges faced by underrepresented voices. Often being the sole Black individual and frequently the only woman in high-stakes meetings, she has cultivated a profound desire to champion the cause of others like her. Her mission is clear: to enhance opportunities and drive positive change for Black women in the advertising industry.  Maria's commitment to mentoring and coaching is unwavering. She has lent her expertise to prestigious roles, including serving on the BIMA mentoring council and acting as the Head of Mentorship at the Brixton Finishing School. She firmly believes in the transformative power of mentors and advocates in shaping individuals' lives and careers.  Beyond mentoring and coaching, Maria's extensive skill set extends to her role as Head of Operations. Here, she excels in orchestrating the seamless and efficient delivery of projects and processes for organisations. What sets Maria apart is her ability to not only optimise efficiency but also transform organisational culture and promote sustainability.  Maria's consultancy work in agencies underscores her holistic understanding of what propels individuals, teams, and companies to excellence. Her keen insights and expertise are instrumental in crafting positive and inclusive environments that foster growth and innovation.  In all her endeavours, Maria McDowell is driven by a profound commitment to effecting meaningful change, championing diversity and inclusion, and leaving an indelible mark on the industry she holds dear.