Mary Franklin was the Executive Director of the National Headache Foundation from June 2016 until November 2020. She joined the Foundation staff in September 2011 as Director of Operations. In September 2011, she retired from the Diamond Headache Clinic, Chicago, as Vice President of Publishing and Administration, where she had previously held various positions in the nursing and administrative departments. She joined the staff of the Diamond Headache Clinic in 1970.

She was the Managing Editor of the magazine, Head Wise. Previously, she served as Managing Editor of the professional journals, Headache Quarterly, and Headache and Pain – Current Treatment and Research. She has authored several articles on headache disorders, and with Seymour Diamond, M.D. is the coauthor of Conquering Your Migraine (2001) and Headache Through the Ages (2005).

A native Chicagoan, she received an M.A. in Chicago Studies from Loyola University Chicago, where she had studied nursing. She also received a B.Ph. in History from Northwestern University.