Archive for November 2015
Part I: Madeline Alcott, Petit Vour
Madeline Alcott is the founder of Petit Vour, a luxury vegan beauty box subscription and boutique. Former nomadic teacher, Madeline’s business came to life after many years of green beauty enthusiasm and a dream of creating the ultimate ethical beauty destination.
Part II: Carter Dillard, Free Candy the Chimpanzee
Carter currently serves as Director of Litigation for the Animal Legal Defense Fund where he manages over half a dozen staff attorneys and dozens of participating pro bono law firms. Carter helped quadruple within less than three years the number of matters the organization had filed, and he has helped achieve judgments, settlements, and precedent that among other things replaced negligent management at public shelters, ended systematic abuses at factory farms and hunting facilities, moved wildlife from ramshackle roadside zoos into sanctuaries, improved standing for animal advocates, and halted false advertising of animal products. With his sister, Carter co-founded the organization Four Feet Forward, which helps small animal advocacy organizations with legal and media campaigns by offering professional services at no cost. He also serves as Executive Director of Uncrowded.org, an organization that simultaneously integrates human rights, environmental and child welfare advocacy by promoting smaller and more loving families.
Carter previously served as General Counsel for Compassion Over Killing, where he settled a case that resulted in one of the biggest changes in animal product advertising in U.S. history, and as Director of Farm Animal Litigation for the Humane Society of the United States, where he helped orchestrate one of the only animal cruelty prosecutions of a corporation for factory farming. Carter began his career as an Honors Program appointee to the U.S. Department of Justice and later served as a legal advisor to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, in the National Security Law Division. He has taught on the faculties or held appointments at Lewis and Clark Law School, Emory University School of Law, and Loyola University New Orleans, College of Law. He holds a B.A. from Boston College, a J.D., Order of the Coif and with honors, from Emory University, and an LL.M. from New York University where he wrote his thesis—on a deeply theorized right to have children—under Jeremy Waldron. Carter has written a dozen articles, including peer-reviewed pieces, on animal protection and human population ethics in journals published by Yale, Duke, Northwestern and other universities, and he currently sits on the Steering Committee for the Population Ethics: Theory and Practice research project at the Future of Humanity Institute, University of Oxford.
Part I: Jay Astafa, Vegan Chef
Jay Astafa stumbled upon veganism as a teen, after witnessing the horrors of factory farming conveyed via an undercover investigation conducted by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). It was after this that Jay began fooling around with food. Immersed in the restaurant business since he was wee, his father’s pizza joint provided the testing ground he needed to develop his kitchen skills. When 3 Brothers Pizza Café expanded its offerings to include Jay’s vegan creations, The New York Times showed up. Thereafter it became a destination for animal lovers and lactose intolerants alike. Due to demand, the vegan options multiplied and, at 20, Jay hosted his first pop-up on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. A runaway success, that’s when the catering calls started flooding in. Since May 2013 he’s been helming Jay Astafa Catering, which services clients from New York to Miami, baby showers to Bar Mitzvahs, weddings to movie sets, nonprofits to music moguls. Somewhere in there he managed also to attend both the Natural Gourmet Institute and the International Culinary Center. In April 2015 Jay executed his second pop-up dinner series, set at a Brooklyn townhouse, which garnered high praise and ample press exposure. And, this summer, Jay launched his latest pop-up series — PLANT by jay astafa — at a Chelsea art gallery. To top it all off, he likewise opened a 100% vegan eatery, 3 Brothers Vegan Café, the first of its kind on Long Island. At 23, it’s a wonder how much Jay’s accomplished. And this doesn’t even touch on his several T.V. appearances, a number that will grow by one quite soon. So stay tuned…
Part II: Kip Andersen and Keegan Kuhn, The Sustainability Secret: Rethinking Our Diet to Transform the World
Kip Andersen is the executive director of Animals United Movement, a nonprofit dedicated to producing films and media promoting sustainable, compassionate, and peaceful living. He is the co-director of the groundbreaking documentary film Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret. Keegan Kuhn is an award-winning documentary filmmaker, video producer, and professional musician. He runs First Spark Media, a video production company tailored to creating videos and films for nonprofit organizations and conscientious companies. He is the director of Turlock: The Documentary and Something To Be Thankful For, and co-director of the groundbreaking environmental filmCowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret.
Part 1: Michelle Schwegmann and Josh Hooten, Eat Like You Give A Damn
Josh Hooten and Michelle Schwegmann are the co-owners of The Herbivore Clothing Company, a vegan clothing, cookbook and lifestyle store in Portland, Oregon’s own Vegan Mini-Mall, and online at herbivoreclothing.com. Founded in 2002, Herbivore makes clothing and accessories for people who like to fashionably proclaim their compassionate beliefs. Herbivore has published several books, including Yellow Rose Recipes and The Vegan Pregnancy Survival Guide. Josh and Michelle’s book, Eat Like You Give a Damn, is a cookbook and guide for new ethical vegans. It is named for the popular slogan they’ve had for years, and was named the readers choice Favorite Cookbook by VegNews Magazine in 2015. Josh and Michelle are parents to ten-year-old Ruby, whose daily vegan lunch you can see via the hashtag #rubybirdslunch.
Part I: Bob Comis, The Last Pig
For the first few decades of his life, Bob Comis was oblivious to the suffering of non-human (and human) animals. Thanks to the courage and bravery of undercover investigators who secretly capture and share footage of the twin horrors of factory farming and industrial slaughter, Bob was roused from his ignorance. He became a vegan, but quickly failed. Then he became a humane pig farmer, and quickly succeeded. He raised pigs for slaughter for ten years, until one day in January, 2014 a powerful vibration of empathy, compassion, and love overwhelmed him, and with the strength of the universal goodness that is our unfettered state of being behind him, he decided to quit pig farming, start a vegetable farm, and become a vegetarian (vegan, in January 2015). Today, when Bob pulls a beet out of the ground, or unearths a brilliant cluster of potatoes he is able to be fully present, which is very much the opposite of his experience when he farmed pigs, which he did from a distance, divorced from the moment, disconnected from himself. Bob is the subject of the upcoming documentary film “The Last Pig” by filmmakers Allison Argo and Joseph Brunette.