Cleveland VegFest 2019 Speakers


Chef Babette

Hot or Cold Vegan Chili

Food Demo Stage, 1:15pm - 2:15pm

Changing Your Road

Breakout Room 14, 3:15pm - 4:00pm

Chef Babette is a world-class healthy chef, fitness expert and motivational speaker. She runs a successful restaurant, Stuff I Eat, and has a loyal fan base via social media outlets while participating in health summit events around the country. She is a force of nature who seems to be able to do it all and transformed her life at the young age of 40.

Chef Babette has appeared on such shows as The Chew in the new HBO hit comedy series Insecure the Hallmark Channel’s Home & Family amongst a few.

This soon to be 68 year-old, this fitness enthusiast and self taught chemist in the kitchen, has been perfecting healthy food that taste out of this world which has allowed her to eat and enjoy the meals she loved without the guilt or associated “diseases” or ailments.

The co-owner of Stuff I Eat, a restaurant in the heart of downtown Inglewood, California, Chef Babette shares an array of raw and cooked recipes including Inspirational Messages and Chef B’s Delectable Delights. Continuing to spread the word of Chef B’s Delectable Delights, she has just completed a dessert book Cash In On Cashews, the first book in her Crave Series, which focuses on the versatility of the amazing cashew nut. You can follow her on Instagram @chefbabette, F/B @babettedavisofficial (Chef Babette) and


Brenda Davis RD

Dispelling Nutrition Myths: removing the halo from animal products and keto/low carb diets

Main Speaker Stage, 3:15pm - 4:00pm

Vegan Nutrition Q&A with a Doctor and Dietitian (with Natalie Santiago MD)

Breakout Room 14, 4:45pm - 5:30pm

Brenda Davis, registered dietitian, is a leader in her field and an internationally acclaimed speaker. As a prolific nutrition and health writer, she has co-authored 11 books with over 750,000 copies in print in 13 languages. Her most recent works include Kick Diabetes: Essential Diet and Lifestyle Guide (2019), The Kick Diabetes Cookbook (2018), Becoming Vegan: Comprehensive Edition (2014) and Becoming Vegan: Express Edition (2013). She has also authored numerous professional and lay articles.

Brenda is the lead clinical nutrition specialist for the diabetes intervention project in the Marshall Islands, and recently completed a lifestyle intervention demonstration program in Lithuania. She is a past chair of the Vegetarian Nutrition Dietetic Practice Group of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and in 2007 was inducted into the Vegetarian Hall of Fame.


JoAnn Farb

Quick, Easy, Delicious: Gluten-Free Ideas to Make an Oil-Free Vegan Diet Even Better

Food Demo Stage, 11:15am - 12:15pm

Raising Vegan Kids

Breakout Room 14, 1:15pm - 2:00pm

JoAnn Farb is a former microbiologist with a global pharmaceutical company, a nutrition educator, the mother of two lifelong vegan daughters and the author of one of the very first vegan parenting books, Compassionate Souls -- Raising the Next Generation to Change the World. Her upcoming book, Gluten-- the Science that Explains the Popularity of Paleo, low carb and Keto explains why some people fail on plant-based diets, and how those who know they must avoid gluten can best reduce their long term risks of common chronic diseases. She has a website and blog at:


Sarina Farb

The Future is Vegan: How Social Change Happens

Main Speaker Stage, 12:15pm - 1:00pm

Raising Vegan Kids

Breakout Room 14, 1:15pm - 2:00pm

Sarina Farb is a science educator, and passionate activist dedicated to making the world a better place for all beings. Born and raised vegan in Kansas, she has unique insights about creating positive change. Her essays about growing up vegan and dealing with “pushback” have been published in books and online. Whether she is teaching high school chemistry, creating YouTube Videos, or organizing vegan events and workshops, Sarina always does her best using a holistic lens and bringing true critical thinking into her work. Sarina earned her B.A. in biochemistry with a concentration in policy studies at Grinnell College, where she also founded a vegan group. Sarina was previously Tribe of Heart's International Liaison, helping to make the award-winning animal films The Witness and Peaceable Kingdom: The journey Home understandable and accessible around the world.


John Lewis (aka: Badass Vegan)

Hungry For Justice

Main Speaker Stage, 1:15pm - 2:00pm

As a well renowned fitness expert, John Lewis has spent over a decade in the health and fitness industry and played Division I College basketball. John is highly passionate about not only his own health and fitness, but that of others as well… Which is evident through his motivational messages either through his international public speaking engagements or simply through his social media outlets.

In addition to his extensive knowledge in body sculpting and contouring, what makes John one of the top national fitness consultants is his creative ability to understand and live a vegan lifestyle while maintaining a physique that is commendable. In essence, he is able to cater to a diverse group of individuals and his services are highly sought after as he masterfully creates and develops personalized, unique and healthy life changing plans.

It is not surprising that given his unique abilities he has attracted clients from various industries including actors, models, and business professionals of all ages.


Christopher-Sebastian McJetters

Digital Media for Animal Rights

Breakout Room 14, 11:15am - 12:00pm

Race, Class, Species

Main Speaker Stage, 4:15pm - 5:00pm

Longtime vegan and social justice advocate Christopher-Sebastian McJetters divides his time between Central Europe, London and New York City. A copyeditor by profession, Sebastian is a staff writer at Vegan Publishers, part-time lecturer on speciesism at Columbia University and board member of Peace Advocacy Network. He focuses on examining the complex relationships between animal violence, environmental racism, classism, and capitalism.

Sebastian has also contributed to the anthology Circles of Compassion: Connecting Issues of Justice edited by Dr. Will Tuttle, UK-based Barefoot Vegan magazine, and the blog Striving With Systems in collaboration with Charlotte Eure, Aph Ko of Aphro-Ism, and Triangle Chance for All microsanctuary co-founder Justin Van Kleeck.


Rashid Mitcham

Vegan Recipes for Beginners: Real Vegan Meat & Potatoes

Food Demo Stage, 5:15pm - 6:15pm

Rashid Mitcham is the owner of MoBite Products, a vegan catering company and food truck - with a mission to provide a healthy alternative to foods that cause disease via presenting the foods that give life in a fun and delicious way.

Rashid has been vegetarian for over 23 years and vegan for the past 8 years. Since his commitment to eating vegan, he's lost nearly 150 pounds! Making this change was a great healing in his life that he feels inspired to share with our community.

Rashid received his training at Soul Food Vegetarian Restaurant in Cleveland, Ohio and worked for multiple food service companies. Mo Bite Products supplies restaurants, caterers and individuals seeking healthy organic vegan alternatives for their nutritional needs and teach classes to those who want a permanent lifestyle change.


Natalie Santiago MD

Vegan Kids, Vegan Families

Main Speaker Stage, 11:15am - 12:00pm

Vegan Nutrition Q&A with a Doctor and Dietitian (with Brenda Davis RD)

Breakout Room 14, 4:45pm - 5:30pm

Dr Natalie Santiago MD is a board-certified Pediatrician. Born and raised on the southside of Chicago, Dr. Natalie knew by kindergarten that she was going to be a doctor. She earned her Bachelor’s degree from Chicago State University, her Doctor of Medicine degree from Creighton University, and completed residency training at Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital. She became vegetarian as a teenager in 1988 and vegan in 2012.

Dr. Natalie has been in medical practice for nearly 11 years. She became interested in plant-based nutrition during her own journey, and decided to help others, leading her to earn a certificate in plant-based nutrition. She started her company, The Vegan Pediatrician LLC in 2018. Through her company she is able to help not only children but also adults. Her goal is to help clients of all ages to achieve optimal health and to have a greater quality of life via a plant-based diet. She is currently working with clients with health concerns such as diabetes and elevated cholesterol.


Rae Sikora

Vegan Crock Cheese for Busy People

Food Demo Stage, 3:15pm - 4:15pm

Brilliant Chickens, Einstein Fish

Main Speaker Stage, 5:15pm - 6:00pm

Rae Sikora has been a full-time spokesperson for other species and the environment for over 40 years. She is co-founder of Plant Peace Daily, VegFund, Santa Fe Vegan, and the Institute for Humane Education. Rae leads compassionate living and ethical consumerism programs internationally for diverse audiences ranging from schools and prisons to businesses and universities. She is the co-author of Plant Peace Daily, Everyday Outreach for People Who Care and Sowing Seeds Humane Education Handbook. She is also author of the soon to be published books, Sharing Home, Compassionate Living Curriculum and Little Jew on the Soul Train. She lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico with her partner, JC Corcoran and their continuously changing crew of rescued animals.


Captain Paul Watson

State of the Oceans

Main Speaker Stage, 2:15pm - 3:00pm

Captain Paul Watson is a marine wildlife conservation and environmental activist. Watson was one of the founding members and directors of Greenpeace. In 1977, he left Greenpeace and founded the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society.

A renowned speaker, accomplished author, master mariner, and lifelong environmentalist, Captain Watson has been awarded many honors for his dedication to the oceans and to the planet. Among many commendations for his work, he received the Genesis Award for Lifetime Achievement in 1998, was named as one of the Top 20 Environmental Heroes of the 20th Century by Time Magazine in 2000 and was inducted into the U.S. Animal Rights Hall of Fame in Washington D.C. in 2002. He was also awarded the Amazon Peace Prize by the president of Ecuador in 2007. In 2012, Captain Watson became only the second person after Captain Jacques Cousteau to be awarded the Jules Verne Award, dedicated to environmentalists and adventurers.

Captain Watson's recent work has been documented on the Animal Planet series Whale Wars, as well as in the documentary, Watson, which recently premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival.