Elise McDonough is a freelance writer and event producer focusing on intimate, high-end cannabis-related experiences, including brand and product launches, consumer testing, focus groups and infused dining. She also consults cannabis companies on everything from product design to art direction and marketing through her Convivial Consulting LLC.
A graduate of the School of Visual Arts in New York City, Elise has frontline experience in graphic design, art direction, editorial design, and special event production. From 2002—2017, she served as a High Times staffer, most recently as the Edibles Editor, reporting on the evolving industry, reviewing cannabis-infused products, testing recipes and producing digital and video content. She is the author of The Official High Times Cannabis Cookbook (Chronicle Books), Marijuana for Everybody! (Chronicle Books), and Sustainable Food (Chelsea Green).
She is married with two dogs and spends time in Santa Cruz and Los Angeles, California. Along with husband David Bienenstock, she was profiled for a cover story in the local alternative weekly Good Times called The Cannabis Couple.
FROM 'THE CANNABIS COUPLE'
Published in Santa Cruz Good Times (May 2012)
"As a self-described “cannabis couple,” Bienenstock and his fiancée Elise McDonough are unapologetic fans of the counterculture’s favorite celestial seasoning. But they hardly fit the stereotype of stoner-as-slacker: Along with being the West Coast editor of the nationally distributed pro-pot monthly High Times, Bienenstock is a digital film director and an eloquent speaker who has appeared on CNN, NPR and—of all things—Fox News.
McDonough is the production director of said High Times as well as an author and graphic designer who graduated from New York’s School of Visual Arts within the top 10 percent of her class. The partners maintain a home office in Santa Cruz, where they write books, help put together High Times and crank out HIGH TIMES Medical Marijuana, a quarterly spin-off publication geared toward medical cannabis patients, providers and growers."—Good Times Santa Cruz profile, "The Cannabis Couple"