Organized by Compassion Over Killing

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Robin Quivers

1:15pm - The Vegucation of Robin: How Real Food Saved My Life

Robin Quivers may be most well known for her humor and wit as a co-host of The Howard Stern Show, but she’s also deeply passionate about health and nutrition. Having found her own medical maladies disappear upon adopting a plant-based diet, Robin lays out a compelling argument in her book The Vegucation of Robin that the key to true health cannot be found in a medicine cabinet. Using her own personal story highlighting her transformation, she suggests that by replacing processed foods and animal products with plant-based foods, we can truly nourish ourselves, both inside and out. Her book also features 90 of her favorite vegan recipes, empowering readers to put their health first by choosing plant-based foods.

Joe Yonan, Washington Post

1:50pm - Cooking Demonstration

Joe Yonan is the two-time James Beard Award-winning Food and Travel editor of The Washington Post and the author of “Eat Your Vegetables: Bold Recipes for the Single Cook” (Ten Speed Press, 2013), which was named among the best cookbooks of 2013 by The Atlantic, The Boston Globe, and NPR’s “Here and Now.” Joe was a food writer and Travel section editor at The Boston Globe before moving to Washington in 2006 to edit the Post’s Food section. He writes the Post’s Weeknight Vegetarian column and for five years wrote the Cooking for One column, both of which have won honors from the Association of Food Journalists. He also writes regularly about his efforts to grow food on his 150-square-foot urban front yard and he’s taught hundreds of cooking classes. Read his story: “A former Omnivore Comes out as a Vegetarian” (Washington Post, 2013)

Bryant Terry - Afro-Vegan Cookbook Author

12:25pm - Cooking Demonstration

Bryant Terry is a chef, educator, and author renowned for his activism to create a healthy, just, and sustainable food system. Bryant is the author of the critically acclaimed Vegan Soul Kitchen: Fresh, Healthy, and Creative African-American Cuisine, The Inspired Vegan, and coauthor of Grub. Bryant’s latest cookbook is Afro-Vegan: Farm-Fresh African, Caribbean & Southern Flavors Remixed. His writing and recipes have been featured in several major publications, including Gourmet, Food and Wine, The New York Times, and the Washington Post. He lives in Oakland, California.

Erica Meier - Compassion Over Killing

12:00pm - Veg Eating on the Rise: from the Margins to the Mainstream

Erica has served as COK’s Executive Director since 2005, after being an active volunteer starting in 2000. Since taking the helm, Erica has taken the organization to new heights with continued growth and accomplishments for animals that include ending the egg industry’s use of the misleading claim “Animal Care Certified” and successfully persuading BOCA foods to stop using eggs. Vegan for 20 years, Erica has been working in the animal protection field since college. In 2013, she was honored with the prestigious Animal Rights Hall of Fame award. Before working at COK, Erica spent several years as an animal control officer in Washington, DC where she rescued sick, stray, and homeless animals as well as enforced anti-cruelty laws.

Dr. Neal Barnard - Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine

2:35 pm - How to Kick Start Your Health

Neal Barnard, M.D., is the president of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) and an Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine at the George Washington University School of Medicine in Washington, DC. Dr. Barnard has led numerous research studies investigating the effects of diet on diabetes, body weight, and chronic pain, including a groundbreaking study of dietary interventions in type 2 diabetes funded by the National Institutes of Health. He has authored dozens of scientific publications as well as 15 books.

Alexis Fox & Micah Risk - Lighter

Cooking Demonstration

Lighter Co-Founder Alexis Fox and Lighter Nutritionist Micah Risk are joyfully revolutionizing the way we think about our relationship to food. Lighter is a nutrition company that makes healthy eating habits stick. Their mission is to empower eaters to resist a culture of consumption and challenge the standard American Diet (SAD). Join this cooking demonstration and discussion to find out how we can transform from the inside out to secure a better life for ourselves, our families, our community and the world. Online at

Dr. Betty Smith

Aging Agelessly: Running Long Distances Powered by Plants

Dr. Betty Smith is a 73 year-old ultra-marathon runner who has run on all seven continents and who recently completed 100 miles in a 72-hour race. She holds age group records for females, 70 to 74 years old for the 48 hour road ultra-marathon and the 6 day road ultra-marathon. Dr. Smith has spent the last 40 years researching and implementing healthier eating and exercise habits — she defies her age and what it means to be 73, attributing much of her athletic success to her 100% plant-based diet. She is truly an inspiration!

John Schlimm

DC VegFest Emcee

Named one of the “Vegan Men We Love” by VegNews magazine, John Schlimm is an activist, artist, educator, and international award-winning cookbook author (The Cheesy Vegan, Grilling Vegan Style, and The Tipsy Vegan). He also recently debuted pieces from his new The Book of Compassion art series, including his flagship 34 COMPASSION Paintings and the participatory THE SMILE THAT CHANGED THE WORLD (is yours). The son of a former butcher, John came out on The Ellen DeGeneres Show as a pro-meatless, pro-vegetable loving foodie, expressing the sentiment that “no living being, human or animal, should ever go through this life unloved.” John’s cookbooks and appearances have been critically acclaimed and heralded by the media, including The New York Times. John has a Master’s in Education from Harvard University and has authored 16 books.

Kid's Area

Now Available: CLICK HERE for the kid's area speaker schedule!

11:00 Music

11:45 Kids Yoga with Burns Foster

12:30 Games and Story-time with 3 Vegan Moms

1:30 Ask-A-Vegan Family

2:30 Kid-Friendly Cooking Demo

3:15 Music

Lesley Parker-Rollins

Ask A Vegan Mom

A mother to three children raised vegan from birth, Lesley has been vegan herself for nearly 16 years. She married her husband, Ray, in 2000 and by early 2001, he was vegan as well! Their first child Tyler was born shortly thereafter, and they went on to have Will in 2003 and Maya in 2007. Raising children vegan was never a question for Lesley and Ray. Between their ethics and compassion for animals, the health benefits of being vegan, and concern and respect for the environment, it made sense that they would instill those values in their children as best they could. Besides being a stay-at-home parent, Lesley enjoys volunteering for many animal rights organizations as much as possible to help create a kinder, more peaceful vegan world. This year, Lesley and her kids will answer questions from audience-members of any age!

Doron Petersan

Cooking Demonstration

Few people have unlocked the secrets of creating animal-free decadent desserts as well as cookbook-author, bakery-owner, and Cupcake Wars-winner Doron Petersan. Holding a degree in Dietetics, Doron has brought dreams of coveted sweet treats to a delicious vegan reality. Her bakery, Sticky Fingers Sweets and Eats, has won several accolades, and her cookbook, Sticky Fingers Sweets has flown off the shelves since its debut earlier this year. When not making the world a sweeter and more savory place, Doron spends her free time volunteering with Pinups for Pitbulls Inc., bike racing competitively on the bakery-sponsored team “Sticky Fingers,” or hanging around Washington, DC with her family, two rescued dogs and son. At the 2014 DC VegFest, Doron will be dishing out information on creating delicious kid-friendly vegan food at the kids area.

Norm Hogeland


Norm Hogeland has worked as a full-time singer/guitarist in the Baltimore/Washington area since the year 2000. Previously he had many jobs including picking apples in Washington State, washing dishes in California, working on a farm in West Virginia, and teaching little kids in Baltimore. His many experiences have given him a rich palate to draw from as a songwriter. For many years, Norm has maintained a vegetarian lifestyle and volunteered many hours at animal sanctuaries in Maryland.

Burns Foster

Kid's Yoga Corner

A movement fanatic all her life, Burns has been movin’ and groovin’ since she was three years old. After Mister Rogers (of the Neighborhood) showed her that even football players could use dance to build agility, balance, and strength, there was no turning back. Coming from a competitive performance dance background, Burns has always had an eye on health and nutrition. She became interested in the vegan lifestyle five years ago because of its potential health benefits, but fell in love with it because of the ethical benefits. Burns is a certified yoga instructor, registered with the Yoga Alliance, and offers private and group sessions for all ages through AT.HA Yoga. She is thrilled to be spending her time sharing the joy of movement and an active lifestyle while supporting the COK cause at this year’s DC VegFest!

Music Tent

Now Available: CLICK HERE for the music tent schedule!

11:00-1:00 Buntopia

1:15-3:15 Steven Gellman

3:30-5:30 Clarissa Barton

Steven Gellman

Musician and animal advocate

Steven Gellman has been performing his slice-of-life lyrics to audiences across the United States since the mid-90s. Described by Billboard Magazine as “intensely sensitive and impressively intelligent,” Gellman’s songwriting captures the simple moments of everyday life and wraps them in notes that will have you humming along – long after the song is over. On stage, Gellman combines friendly banter with a sonorous, tenor voice that critics have compared to the late John Denver.

Clarissa Barton

Musician and animal advocate

Clarissa Barton has performed as a singer and actor throughout Southern California and the Washington, DC, area. She delivers her personal songs with powerful vocals and pop-piano accompaniment. In the daylight hours, Clarissa enjoys working for an organization that advocates for plant-based diets. She will soon appear in Pinky Swear Productions’ Tiny House Plays at Boneyard Studios, a showcase micro-community in DC. You can find Clarissa online at


Musicians and animal advocates

Buntopia is a two-person band featuring Colleen Orozco (vocals) and Gary Loewenthal (guitar). They play a wide range of music from rock to blues to jazz – currents and classics — as well as many originals. Colleen, who’s been singing since age 4, says “Music comes from the heart, where our most profound feelings live. Great songs are in every genre, but they all have deep emotion in common.” When she is not singing or cooking up a vegan storm, Colleen is an enthusiastic gardener and backyard birder. Gary is founder of the Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale, co-founder of Compassion for Animals, the author of several magazine articles on animal advocacy, and a long-time grassroots vegan activist. He’s been a professional performing and recording musician for over 40 years. Colleen and Gary both live with rescued rabbits, hence the duo’s nickname. Buntopia made its debut at the Rehoboth VegFest, where they were a big hit.



DC VegFest is organized by Compassion Over Killing, a DC-based non-profit charity. Your support is needed to help this event grow even more. Please donate now.