Mary Carey (born June 15, 1980) is a American pornographic actress and was a candidate for Governor of California in 2003.
Carey was born Mary Ellen Cook in Cleveland, Ohio to a schizophrenic mother and a father with cerebral palsy, and she was taken care of by her grandparents from the age of three months. After her parents divorced, her mother moved in with Carey and her grandparents. At seven years of age the family moved from Cleveland to Florida, and the next year Carey was legally adopted by her grandparents.
Carey studied ballet from the age of seven until she was 19 years old. She graduated in 1998 from the Pine Crest School, a Fort Lauderdale private preparatory school. At 19, she joined the dance team at Florida Atlantic University, where she was a student in the theater department. After her grandfather's death, her grandmother's health worsened, so Carey took a job as an exotic dancer to help support the family financially. Upon noticing that the "feature dancers" made much more money, she asked an agent how she could become one too; the agent recommended that she become a porn star (the large fan base that successful porn stars gives them superior drawing power when they dance in-person at strip clubs). Carey traveled to Los Angeles and made the rounds of the adult-film producers and studios, eventually landing a job with Playboy TV.