iV: The Annual Ivy League Vegan Conference
On the weekend of 30 March to 1 April 2012, the University of Pennsylvania will host the first Ivy League conference dedicated to exploring bioethics and the academic basis for plant-based diets while building a cohesive community of scholars.
The conference aims to embolden and empower vegan activists in their work throughout the Ivy League, build a lasting and powerful network of colleagues, and expand and modernize the definition of veganism for the 21st century academic. We expect an attendance of approximately 100 students from across the Ivy League.
In creating this conference, we have intentionally designed a scholarly, academic space. All presentations or facilitated seminars by invited guests will focus on meta-analyzing the current state of the movement. Most of those in attendance will already be familiar with the current, mainstream rhetoric used in the movement, so we will emphasize discussions of self-critique and re-examination. Each session will 90 minutes in length.
A distinguishing factor of our conference is that we hope that the invited guests/speakers/facilitators will leave having learned just as much as our attendees. We intend to create an atmosphere of open expression and productive dialogue. One of the loftier goals of the conference is to have this gathering function as an annual “turning point” in the national and international efforts behind veganism, plant-based diets, and non-violence. This gathering is where we call into question every major facet of vegan activism and advocacy and challenge ourselves to do better; to take the next step; to alter our future course(s) of action and scholarship based on the wealth of progressive intellectualism that we shall apply to these issues.
Among the attendees there will be committed scholar-activists who are challenged by their peers demanding high academic rigor in each assertion about veganism. The inundation in a sea of highly competent critical peers has had a lasting impact on the work of each scholar-activist and forced him/her to develop new ideas and paradigms. Often within the vegan community, opposition has been readily dismissed resulting in a perpetuation of old ideas and techniques over decades. By introducing new ideas for breaking into untapped populations, we can dramatically grow our numbers within the intellectual elite and from there, directly and indirectly, influence enormous numbers within the academy and beyond. Reminiscent of the history of the Civil Rights Movement, this conference is at the intersection of Walter Rauschenbusch’s interpretation of Moral Suasion and Reinhold Niebuhr’s Theological Realism. Through this conference, we are using nothing less than countervailing power to combat the institutionalized forms of oppression often perpetuated by our own peers, colleagues, and predecessors as they ascend to positions of influence. With us, the narrative and discourse change.
Session: Jon Camp and Nick Cooney – “Effective Advocacy: Making Your Time (And Money) Count”
Houston Hall, 2nd Floor, Golkin Room: 10:00-11:30AM
Session Description: This session will provide an overview of the current vegan advocacy movement, and discuss how individuals, groups, and donors can maximize the amount of good they do per hour spent and per dollar donated. We’ll be discussing which current vegan advocacy programs are generating the biggest returns for animals, and how individual advocates can be more persuasive in communicating with the public. We’ll also discuss the importance of philanthropy and how donors can most effectively bring about the change they wish to see in the world.
Speaker Bios: Jon Camp is Director of Outreach for Vegan Outreach. He’s spent the last seven years traveling the country on behalf of VO’s college outreach program, reaching out to students with the plight of farmed animals. Jon has been to over 400 schools throughout North America, distributing Vegan Outreach materials and giving talks.
Nick Cooney is the Compassionate Communities Campaign Manager for Farm Sanctuary, the nation’s largest farm animal protection organization. His work for animals has been featured in hundreds of media outlets including the Wall Street Journal, Time Magazine, and National Public Radio. He is also the author of Change of Heart: What Psychology Can Teach Us About Spreading Social Change, about which New York Times Bestseller Rory Freedman proclaimed: “If you want to create a better world, read this book.” Nick resides in Philadelphia, PA.
Session: Joshua Katcher - “Ethical Fashion”
Houston Hall, 2nd Floor, Golkin Room: 11:45AM-1:15PM
[This speaker is covering both the Bioethics and Environment Tracks]
Session Description: This talk will analyze the iconography of various forms of power communicated through dress that are utilized in the fashion industry, exploring how those symbols and icons create a dynamic that not only rationalizes and excuses violence toward animals, but encourages their consumption and the display of their skins as the primary method of one’s showcasing individual sexuality, power and worth.
Speaker Bio: Professor Joshua Katcher teaches ethical and sustainable fashion at the Laboratory Institute of Merchandising (LIM College) in Manhattan. His lectures on ethical fashion have taken him to Parsons University, Brown University, The American University of Paris, along with many fashion organizations, conferences and festivals. Katcher’s classroom has become an essential stop-over for many leading voices in the sustainable fashion world for special guest speakers like Nigel Barker and John Bartlett.
Katcher founded The Discerning Brute is a resource for men who want to make intelligent decisions concerning their lifestyles. With a focus on “fashion, food & etiquette for the ethically handsome man”, The Discerning Brute produces expert, essential content and boldly takes a stand.
Joshua has been getting some notable notoriety for his efforts (see Press):
• The Wild Magazine “Katcher is a modern day hero in the making…”
• W Magazine: “Joshua Katcher, the force behind The Discerning Brute”
• UK’s The Guardian: “New Year, New Cool, “The New Sexy Vegan: Joshua Katcher”
• StyleLikeU: “He’s so at peace with his ideals that it is infectious”
• Oprah.com: “Vegan superstar Joshua Katcher”
• Time Out NY: “Katcher’s sleek, tailored accessories are inspired by the dandy aesthetic
• Ecouterre: “Brave GentleMan shoe collection underscores one indubitable fact: It’s never been manlier to be vegan.”
• VegNews Magazine: “Ethical Style Icon”
• Full Frontal Fashion: “…involved in seemingly endless — and ultimately inspiring — projects, is proof that believing in what you do, and being dedicated to a cause, will get you everywhere”
Session: Caryn Ginsberg – “Power of Persuasion: How People Change, Which Messages Work, and What You Can Do to Increase Plant-based Eating”
Houston Hall, 2nd Floor, Golkin Room: 2:45-4:15PM
Session Description: From hostility to blank stares, conversations around diet and behavior change can be frustrating and often unproductive. The good news is that there are proven approaches you can use, so that your conversations, campaigns, and programs are more effective. Learn more about the research behind the diverse approaches to inspiring others to reduce or eliminate their consumption of animal products. This high-energy, interactive session includes a review of the data collected by the Humane Research Council on meat reduction and veganism.
Speaker Bio: Caryn Ginsberg is the author of “Animal Impact: Secrets Proven to Achieve Results and Move the World” (http://animal-Impact.com). Peter Singer, Wayne Pacelle, Gene Baur and others have praised the book as a must-have resource for advocates. Caryn has spent more than a decade helping animal protection advocates utilize proven strategy and marketing approaches to get better results. She has worked with the ASPCA, The HSUS, PetSmart Charities, Farm Sanctuary, Humane Farm Animal Care, and RedRover, among others. She has served on boards of directors and advisory boards, including for the Institute for Humane Education and the Humane Research Council. Clients and colleagues appreciate Caryn’s ability to get to the heart of what matters, focus on what’s actionable, and generate new ideas.
As a classroom instructor, she has led marketing courses in the MBA program at Johns Hopkins University. She also taught social marketing and strategic management in a joint program of Johns Hopkins and Humane Society University (HSU). Her online courses for HSU include Building an Effective Campaign: Research and Planning (co-developed with Heidi Prescott); Social Marketing; Statistics Surveys and Scorecards; and Measuring Effectiveness.
A popular speaker, Caryn has presented at the Taking Action for Animals conference, the Animal Rights National Conference, and Animal Care Expo as well as meetings of Animal Grantmakers and the National Council on Pet Population Study & Policy. Along with the ASPCA’s Bert Troughton, she co-authored Making Plans to Make a Difference: Business Planning for Shelters to Inspire, Mobilize, and Sustain Change. She has also written articles for The Animals’ Agenda, Vegetarian Journal, and Executive Update.
Caryn holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and an A.B. in economics/mathematics from Dartmouth College, where she played varsity ice hockey. She earned an advanced certificate in marketing design from Sessions College for Professional Design. Her favorite animals are sheep, and her backyard is full of birds and squirrels who let her know when the feeders are empty.
Session: Marty Davey, RD – “Common Misconceptions about Plant-Based Diets”
Houston Hall, 2nd Floor, Golkin Room: 4:30-6:00PM
Session Description: This session will feature the ubiquity of protein sources, specific vegan vitamin and mineral deficiencies, contemporary vegan nutrition research, and best practices for encouraging others toward a plant-based diet while avoiding pitfalls like guilt or judgment. Specifically, topics such as protein sources [including confusion over the 2010 USDA Nutrition Guidelines], Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin), DHA supplementation, and Ms. Davey’s personal observations in the recent PCRM-Geico study [findings are not out, yet] will be covered.
Speaker Bio: Marty Davey, MS, RD, LDN is the international cooking/nutrition video star, LaDiva Dietitian! LaDiva creates yummy, hilarious no cholesterol video recipes. The LaDiva Dietitian! TV show airs in northeast Pennsylvania. LaDiva’s eCookbook, Good Hair = Good Nutrition, The Recipes is due August, 2012. Marty has been a researcher for Marywood University and the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. She has been published in VegNews, VegFamily.com and currently writes for Vegan Culinary Experience. In summer 2012, she will teach nutrition for Main Street Vegan’s Vegan LifeCoach program in New York City, as well as a live webinar class on advanced plant-based nutrition. Contact Marty Davey or LaDiva at: http://www.LaDivaDietitian.com.