Archive for August 2019

Gesshin Claire Greenwood, Just Enough: Vegan Recipes and Stories from Japan’s Buddhist Temples
Gesshin Claire Greenwood is the author of Just Enough and Bow First, Ask Questions Later. She also writes the very popular Buddhist blog, That’s So Zen. She was ordained by Seido Suzuki Roshi in 2010 and in 2015 received dharma transmission (authorization to teach). She returned to the United States in 2016 to complete her master’s degree in East Asian Studies. A popular meditation teacher, she lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, California. Find out more about her work at

Linda Soper-Kolton, Compassionate Cuisine
Linda Soper-Kolton came to Catskill Animal Sanctuary in 2012 as a guest chef, intending to teach Compassionate Cuisine cooking classes for a season before returning to her vegetarian and vegan café in Fairfield, Connecticut. Lured by the magic of the sanctuary and the urgency of the mission, Linda stayed to lead and grow the culinary program, inspiring and educating with love, patience, and delicious food. Almost 8 years later, she continues to cook, teach, write, and kiss pigs. Unlike many chefs, Linda did not grow up at the knee of a family matriarch in the kitchen. Instead, her early memories of mealtime included mashed potatoes made with milk powder and potato flakes, Friday’s clean-out-the-fridge “spaghetti surprise,” and a lot of liver. Linda learned to cook out of sheer necessity. In the humble kitchen of her first apartment, Linda spent nights baking, roasting, and simmering for roommates, coworkers, and anyone else she could find. With “food is love” as her mantra, cooking and feeding became her way of nurturing and connecting with others. In midlife, she fulfilled a lifelong dream of becoming a chef when she graduated from the Natural Gourmet Institute. Combining her chef’s training with certification as a holistic health coach from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, Linda is driven to love and influence others through compassionate, plant-based eating. When she’s not in the kitchen creating, she’s probably looking for her glasses.

Part I: Amy Jean Davis, LA Animal Save
Amy Jean Davis is an animal rights advocate, Spokesperson for the Save Movement, and the Founder of LA Animal Save, the Los Angeles chapter of the global Save Movement.

Davis graduated Purdue University in 2004. After having become vegan in 2002, she started an animal sanctuary in the Los Angeles, California area. In 2015, she completed her certificate in Plant Based Nutrition from eCornell, and in 2016, Amy founded LA Animal Save, which is now the largest chapter of more than 600 Save groups worldwide.

Amy also works with her partner, filmmaker Shaun Monson (EARTHLINGS, UNITY), creating films and other media for the animal rights movement. Originally from a small town in Indiana, Amy came to Los Angeles in 2008 as a top 24 Finalist on season 7 of American Idol.

Part II: Laura Reese, Vegan Justice League
Laura Reese’s eighteen-year career in the semiconductor industry was largely spent at Altera Corporation, which is now a division of Intel Corporation. In the product planning department, she directed the customer advisory board (CAB) program. She earned a Bachelor of Science in biomedical and electrical engineering with a business minor from the University of Southern California in 1996.

In 2006, she studied personal finance through Boston University and earned a Certified Financial Planning certificate from the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards. In 2014, Laura founded a charity for Rohingya refugees in Malaysia called

In 2017, Laura began researching our food system and adopted a vegan lifestyle. Recognizing the destructive environmental damage of the animal agriculture industry, she became an activist within months. By early 2018, she founded a local Anonymous for the Voiceless chapter. A year later, she lobbied Congress to help animal farmers transition to sustainable, non-exploitative businesses. Laura continues to lobby for environmental and animal justice through an organization she co-founded with Connie Spence, called The Vegan Justice League.

It’s All About Food
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