Please check back here regularly for more updates on speakers who will be coming from around the globe to join local speakers and vegan activists from Nepal and Bhutan at the Himalayan Vegan Festival. “Some of the fantastic speakers include:”


(Award Winning Documentary Filmmaker)

Keegan Kuhn is the award-winning co-director and producer of the highly acclaimed documentary feature films Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret (executive produced by Leonardo DiCaprio) and What the Health (executive produced by Joaquin Phoenix). Both movies are considered among the most influential vegan films ever made. Kuhn also recently directed They're Trying To Kill Us (executive produced by Chris Paul and Billie Eilish) and Running for Good: The Fiona Oakes Documentary (executive produced by James Cromwell). As the owner and operator of the digital film production company First Spark Media, he has dedicated his life to producing films addressing social justice issues.


(Vegan Mountaineer and Two-time Everest Summitter)

Kuntal Joisher is the first vegan to climb to the top of Mount Everest, which he incredibly did not do just once, but twice! Through his trekking, he works to dispel myths about nutrition and a plant-based diet. He is equally passionate about raising awareness about the health benefits of veganism for both people and the planet. As a respected photographer, Joisher’s work has been published in National Geographic, BBC Earth, The Outdoor Journal, Himalayan Journal, and many other magazines globally. He is the winner of the prestigious Kutch Shakti, Kutch Ratna, and Kutch Kohinoor Awards in India.


(Whole Food Plant-Based Nutrition Advocate)

Dr. LeAnne Campbell is the President of T. Collin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies, a not-for-profit organization that advocates for the benefits of a whole food, plant-based lifestyle. She has over 30 years’ experience as an educator and has directed several not-for-profit organizations globally. Dr. Campbell authored The China Study Cookbook and is the editor of The China Study All-Star Collection and The China Study Quick & Easy Cookbook. She currently lives in the mountains of the Dominican Republic where she directs the Global Roots Education Center. Through her work, she partners with US educational institutions to coordinate initiatives exploring the power of food.


(World Vegan Organisation Founder and Doctor in Nutrition)

An icon among Asia’s vegan activists, Dr. Susianto is the president of the World Vegan Organisation. He is a doctor in Nutrition from the Faculty of Public Health, University of Indonesia (Summa Cum Laude). Dr. Tseng is a world-renowned expert on tempeh, having authored several books on the fermented soybean food including The Miracle of Tempeh and Tempted by Tempeh, earning him the nickname, the King of Tempeh. His other literary works include The Miracle of Vegan, Vegan Nutrition for Pregnancy, and Vegan Nutrition for Children. Dr. Tseng is an activist and global speaker and has held leadership positions in various international vegan organizations.


(Global Vegan Marathon Runner and Animal Sanctuary Founder)

Fiona Oakes is a longtime vegan and a 4-time world record marathon runner. She was the subject of Running for Good, a documentary feature film by award-winning director Keegan Kuhn. The film documents her attempt to set a new global record in competitive endurance racing in the Marathon Des Sables, a 250km race through the Sahara Desert. She holds several records, including being the fastest female in elapsed time to complete a marathon on each continent and the North Pole. Oakes operates Tower Stables Animal Sanctuary, which cares for more than 450 rescued animals daily. Her mission is to promote a compassionate way of living while breaking vegan stereotypes.

DR. SETO MULYADI (Indonesia)

(Vegan Educator and Child Psychologist)

Dr. Seto Mulyadi is a child psychologist, activist, and vegan educator. He speaks at events across Indonesia to promote the benefits of a vegan lifestyle. He has dedicated almost a decade to advancing the cause of veganism in the country. Affectionately known as Kak Seto, he is one of Indonesia’s most famous family television show celebrities and advocates for child welfare. Dr. Mulyadi is also the chairman of the country’s National Commission for Child Protection and cooperates with the government, the Department of Health, and the Department of Education & Culture to promote child protection and rights, and advocates for veganism and health.


(Principal Marketing and Ideas Man, HappyCow.net)

Ken Spector is the marketing, ideas man and a key principal at HappyCow. An award-winning online platform, HappyCow was founded in 1999 to help people everywhere to find vegan, vegetarian, and healthy food around the world. Winner of eleven Veggie Awards in the USA, HappyCow currently lists over 50,000 businesses in more than 175 countries serving millions of online viewers each month. Spector has consulted or worked in upper management for numerous companies including Microsoft, Hollywood.com, Eco Vision Packaging, and LivingECO.com. He is dedicated to living a vegan, holistic, sustainable lifestyle and currently lives in Los Angeles.


(Nepalese History, Culture and Archaeology Expert)

Dr. Tandon did his PhD on ‘Cultural study of Pashupati Area’ through Tribhuvan University and is considered an expert on Nepalese history, culture and archaeology, and is also founding member of SPCA Nepal (Society of People Against Cruelty Towards Animals). He has been awarded different royal awards in addition to SAARC medal, JhapatSingh Prize, Gunaraj Prize, BhupalManSingh Prize etc. He observes Sattvic diet lifestyle and is against oppression and superstition. He believes in positively uplifting humanity through a plant based and violence free lifestyle, and considers animal sacrifice a evil. Recognizing the existence of animals and accepting that the world is also for them, he looks forward to build a violence free society while making the most out of plant based lifestyle in order to preserve health, environment, etc.


(Rowdy Girl Sanctuary Founder and Advocate for Compassionate Farming)

Renee is the founder of Rowdy Girl Sanctuary and Rancher’s Advocacy Program, which she founded after witnessing the cruelty of ranching at her husband’s ranch. She has appeared on various TV channels including CBS, ABC, RFD, and Animal Planet explaining how she turned the former beef cattle ranch into a sanctuary. Renee has inspired and coached many American rancher families in the move to sustainable ranching models that are good for the planet, animals, and farmers, and free from killing. Renee formerly worked as a professional musician and owned a wellness spa, where she was a certified yoga instructor and Ayurveda practitioner.


(Specialist at Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine)

Dr. Zeeshan Ali is a program specialist at the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, founded by Dr. Neal Bernard, one of the foremost medical doctors advocating for a vegan diet. Dr. Ali uses his knowledge of chronic disease, nutrition, and Indian culture to develop their 21-day kick-start India program. He also writes scientific reviews and articles on non-animal-based research methods. He received his doctorate degree from Johann Wolfgang Goethe University (Germany), and a postdoctoral fellowship at University Piemonte Orientale (Italy). Dr. Ali’s work focuses on reaching physicians, healthcare professionals, and researchers, and advocating for policy changes to prevent chronic diseases through plant-based nutrition.


(Vegan Activist, WVO Chair Nepal, and Director of VegVoyages Himalayas Vegan Tours)

Suresh is the Nepal chair of the World Vegan Organisation and co-founder of the Nepal Vegetarian Association. As the director of Himalayan Operations at VegVoyages Vegan Adventures, he organized and led the first international vegan tour group in the country. Suresh has travelled extensively in the region, leading hundreds of holistic tours. He holds a master’s in Sanskrit and Oriental Philosophy and once received the prestigious Gold Medal and Bidhya Bhushand Padak in Philosophy, felicitated to him by the first President of Nepal. Suresh dreams of building a peaceful society in Nepal by promoting veganism, and hopes to make Nepal the world’s best vegan destination.


(Vegan First Founder and CEO)

Palak Mehta is the founder and CEO of Vegan First, India’s leading publication and digital media platform for all things vegan. She started Vegan First in 2016 to promote the plant-based ecosystem in India, and organized the Vegan India Conference in 2019. Palak also runs her own show on YouTube, The Palak Mehta Show, where she aims to unearth the hidden gems and silent beings who have contributed to the spiritual treasury of the country. Palak is also vice-chair of the India chapter of the World Vegan Organisation.


(Social Worker, President Nepal Vegan Association, WVO Nepal Senior Vice-Chairperson)

A passionate vegan for over 18 years, Bishnu is an active advocate for the benefits of a plant-based diet for people, animals and the planet. A businessman by profession, his true love is in being involved with and promoting various humanitarian projects in Nepal from compassionate living programs and associations, to vegan advocacy campaigns and human welfare organizations such as the Manav Sewa Ashram human service shelter for the homeless. He is also a devotee of Supreme Master Ching Hai.


(General Secretary WVO Nepal, Scholar-PhD Candidate in Sociology, Conservationist, Human Resources Expert, Former Director of Recruitment & Retired Brigadier General, Nepal Army)

Ajit is a dynamic Human Resources professional with 35 years of military experience providing guidance on human resources operational topics and challenges. Ajit’s love of wildlife and animals grew immensely during his duty in Nepal’s national parks, and he is now an avid promoter of veganism for animals, the environment, and health. Ajit has years of experience and extensive skills in HR administration, UN Peacekeeping missions and teaching both in the military as well as civil colleges. He is a Professional National Park Conservationist winning the Nancy Abraham Conservation International Award (Individual) and IUCN commendation for the Security Duty in National Parks in 2006.


(Author, Vegan activist, Founder Director of Sharan)

Dr. Nandita Shah believes that we can be our own best doctors most of the time. She is the founder of Sharan, an Indian Vegan organization devoted to building a culture of health and disease reversal through food. She received the Nari Shakti Award 2016 in recognition of her work in the field of health and nutrition and is the author of Reversing Diabetes in 21 Days, an Amazon India #1 bestseller in endocrinology.


(Founder of Project Humane Nepal and Compassionate Education Advocate)

Angeela Shrestha is the founder of Project Humane Nepal, which educates over 5000 students and community members annually on animal welfare and changing behaviour towards street dogs. Shrestha was honoured by the Clinton Global Initiative University at their annual conference in 2015 for her ‘commitment to action’. Passionate about helping animals in Nepal, after graduating from the University of Nebraska at Omaha, she moved back to Kathmandu to start ‘Project Humane Nepal’ to educate kids about street dogs and animal welfare.

CHEF JAJAH (Thailand)

(Vegan Master Baker, Veganerie Founder, and Vegan Restaurateur)

Chef Jajah is a master vegan baker and founder of Veganerie, the leading vegan restaurant chain in Thailand. She is credited with popularizing the term ‘vegan’ in Bangkok since opening her first outlet in 2014. Veganerie currently has six branches across the country. Jajah’s dishes are also low-calorie, low-sugar, cholesterol-free, and are offered alongside gluten and nut-free options. As an expert in vegan cooking, she also developed the plant- based menu at Al Baleed Resort Salalah by Anantara, Oman. Her talent for creating tasty and healthy vegan food has won the attention of non-vegan food critics as demonstrated by her several prestigious food awards.


(Author of The Shooting Star, Vegan Travel Writer)

Shivya Nath is the author of the bestselling travel memoir The Shooting Star. The book charts her adventures from a steady 9-to-5 job to a nomadic vegan life, living with indigenous communities worldwide. In 2013, Shivya gave up her apartment, sold most of her belongings, and has since been living out of two bags. She documents her journey on her award-winning travel blog, and is a leading advocate for offbeat, vegan, and sustainable travel. She has appeared on the cover of National Geographic Traveller Magazine India, and has been featured by The Washington Post among travel influencers changing how we think about the world.


(Founder of Jangsem Monday (Meatless Monday Bhutan), Animal Advocate, Film Director & Producer)

Karma Dendup is the Founder and Executive Director of the Meatless Monday campaign in Bhutan known as Jangsem Monday. In addition to focusing on individual pledges for people to be vegan on Mondays, the Jangsem Monday campaign also has been successful in convincing over 66 schools, as well as numerous NGO’s to also take the Jangsem Monday pledge. The goal will eventually be to create awareness and urge all institutions, hotels, and restaurants to go meatless on Mondays. For Karma, this is the first step in encouraging a plant-based diet for people to follow regularly for the sake of people, animals, the environment, his country, and the planet. In addition to being the Executive Director of Jangsem Monday (Meatless Monday) and an advocate for a more compassionate planet, Karma Dendup is a media producer who before becoming Head of Production at the Bhutan film and media company Reflection Films, was a TV host and producer with the Bhutan Broadcasting Service, where he was also awarded a national award for his documentary during the 2nd Annual Journalism Awards.


(Executive Director of the Journalist’s Association of Bhutan)

Namgay Zam is an well-known independent multimedia journalist. She is a passionate advocate for social justice, equal rights, and mental health. Zam is a Fulbright Humphrey Fellow and an Asia 21 Young leader. She is currently the executive director of the Journalists’ Association of Bhutan.


(Animal Rights Activist, Director of Jangsa Animal Saving Trust, Actor and Film Director)

An active animal rights advocate, when not working on his next movie, Tshering can be found volunteering his time protecting animals. As a longtime dedicated volunteer at the Jangsa Animal Saving Trust, which was founded on the spiritual practice of Tsethar (saving animals lives) and is actively involved in all fields of animal welfare - from rescuing injured and sick animals and providing medical intervention and care, to maintaining animal shelters, sanctuaries and pasturelands in Bhutan and India. Tshering became its Executive Director in 2019. When not helping animals, Tshering is busy directing, acting, and singing as in Bhutanese as well as international film productions (he can speak 6 different languages). Popularly known as Drubi Keta, he is the lead singer of the Bhutanese band Bathroom Singers and is a veteran actor and director winning Bhutan’s National Film Awards Best Supporting Actor and Best Villain Awards in 2020. In addition to animal advocacy, Tshering loves having artistic fun and wants to teach others to do the same.


(Founder & Executive Director of Royal Society for Protection and Care of Animals, Bhutan)

Tashi Payden is the Founder and Executive Director of the RSPCA (Royal Society for the Protection and Care of Animals) Bhutan. An avid animal rights activist, she constantly works to improve the lives of animals throughout the kingdom. In the 1990’s, after a campaign was set forth by the government on the advice of the WHO to adopt culling as a means of controlling stray dogs to prevent the spread of rabies, Tashi approached the Mayor of Thimpu and suggested sterilization and vaccination as an alternative to culling. Her idea was welcomed and an effective and compassionate program of vaccinations, spay and neutering was enacted with the assistance of the National Animal Hospital. In 1999, the RSPCA was established with the patronage of Her Majesty the Queen Mother Ashi Tshering Yangdon Wangchuck. The society, which Tashi founded and oversees as its Executive Director, has worked tirelessly to create a better future for the stray dogs of Bhutan and to protect and care for all animals in the Himalayan kingdom.


(Grants Program Director, ProVeg International)

Jessika is Director of Grants Program at ProVeg International where her work expands global vegan advocacy efforts through grantmaking and strategic capacity-building efforts. To date, her work with ProVeg has strengthened and expanded the advocacy of nearly 200 organizations in over 60 countries. Jessika’s niche lies in coordinating global projects, quantitative evaluation, and guiding philanthropic support. Her notable experience includes NGO management, international grantmaking, biostatistics, and Asian street animal welfare. She holds an MS in Biostatistics, an MPA in Nonprofit Management and Program Evaluation, and a BS in Biology.


(An animal lover)

Dorji loves animals and considers them to be his friends and family. He can not bear seeing stray dogs hungry and over time he has been able to find ways to support and feed homeless dogs. He disagrees with the notion of people who consider Dogs as well as other animals voice-less. He believes that all animals even human do have a voice and we can hear it if we choose to listen compassionately. For Dorji, eating meat equates to killing animals, as meat doesn’t grow on trees it is the flesh of a living being who can feel pleasure and pain. He has strong passion or hobby for traveling and hiking along nature trails and during his spare time, he is either trekking or hiking. He owns and manages ‘Bhutan Morning Dew’ tours and travels , which is both a commercial venture and more importantly a means for him to share his country the best way he can to visitors. He considers that a life spent without helping others and without being of service to others is a wasted life. Rather than making it about human-animal and superior-inferior conflict, he believes in all of us living in harmony. All life is precious and sacred- young or old, animal or human. Live and help live. Be an example, practice Ahimsa.


(Animal Rights Advocate, Vegan Activist and Vice-President, Animal Nepal)

Shristi is a key animal welfare campaigner at the community and policy level for several leading animal rights organizations in Nepal. Her journey began when an abandoned calf died in her arms, which made her become vegan. Shristi’s goal is to create a country where all living beings are treated with respect, kindness and granted their freedom. She is currently involved in an initiative to ban elephant riding and exploitation in Nepal permanently. Shristi is also Vice-President of Animal Nepal, which works through interventions, animal rescue, research, education, campaigns, and advocacy to create protective rights for animals.


(Animal Rights Advocate, Vegan Activist and Vice-President, Animal Nepal)

As co-founder and CEO of GoodDot, one of India’s largest homegrown mock meat brands, Abhishek Sinha focuses on making vegan meat affordable to the general public through shelf-stable mock meats, vegan food trucks, and fast food outlets. Sinha’s mission is firmly rooted in the Indian concept of ahimsa (non-violence), and he seeks to provide ethical, healthier, and environmentally friendly alternatives to meat that does not compromise on taste. GoodDot has won several prestigious awards for providing healthy, affordable and cruelty-free vegan food products, including PETA India’s Trailblazing Business Award in 2017.


(Vegan Dairy Nepal Co-founder)

Kajol Sethia is a vegan entrepreneur, advocate, and co-founder of Vegan Dairy Nepal. She started the business after seeing a gap in the market for plant-based dairy and honey alternatives. With humble origins in the family kitchen, her products now can be found at restaurants and markets in several cities throughout Nepal. Sethia has been approached by global hotel chains and plans to hit supermarket shelves outside of Nepal in the coming year. As an advocate for veganism in Nepal, she was the first person in the country to win PETA Asia’s Outstanding Activist Award for her work with animals and activism.

MAY KAIDEE (Thailand)

Award-Winning Chef, Restaurateur and Cooking School Owner)

May Kaidee is a cookbook author, and the owner and head chef of May Kaidee East Broadway vegan restaurant in Manhattan. Her journey began some 20 years ago when she began working at her aunt’s vegetarian restaurant in Bangkok, where she subsequently quit animal products and developed her own recipes, sauces and pastes. Kaidee now runs cooking schools and restaurants that have won multiple awards. She also lectures at events, tutors master chefs and has her own film on Thai vegetarian cooking. May has made television appearances globally and was personally selected by His Royal Highness Prince Philippe of Belgium as Thailand’s best chef.


(Vegan Advocate & Nutrition Expert)

Dr. Muhammad Umair Arshad is the Founder and Director of Food Science and Nutrition at the Government College University Faisalabad, Pakistan, and is a passionate advocate for a plant-based diet. His area of expertise includes the functional role of plant-based food components in the management of appetite control and diabetes. He also serves in Pakistan’s regulatory scientific authority panel, and is actively involved in the formulation, and execution of food standards and regulations promoting plant-based diets for better nutrition. As a leading voice of the vegan community in his country, Dr. Arshad is the World Vegan Organization’s Chair for Pakistan where he actively works with student groups and entrepreneurs, to expand vegan ideology for a better human ecosystem in Pakistan.

SHARA NG (Hong Kong)

(International Vegetarian Union (IVU) Asia Pacific Region representative, Vice President of Asia Pacific Vegan Union (APVU)

Shara is the founder of Hong Kong Vegan Association and has been a vegan activist in Hong Kong since 2006. Shara is also the founder of Meat Free Hong Kong–a program under Hong Kong Vegan Association that started in 2009 as a meet-up every Monday (Meatless Monday) to enjoy vegan dishes in various vegetarian restaurants across the city, which has now grown to include weekends as well, with over 5,700 members. Shara is also the founder and organizer of the Hong Kong VegFest in collaboration with nine Hong Kong veggie organizations. The VegFest attracts over 6,000 visitors each year, and helps many vegan businesses to promote their products. As one of the Hong Kong Vegan Association education programs, Shara publishes GoVeg magazine to help promote a plant-based diet in Hong Kong and China.


(Physician Doctor, Vegan Motivator)

Dr. Vythilingam Pillay is a medical practitioner. Apart from practising allopathic medicine, his interest is in plant-based nutrition. He is a plant-based lifestyle advocate, changing the mindset of patients away from allopathic medicine to no medicine and advocating balanced plant-based food to keep our body and mind balanced. He is a vegetarian since 1984 and vegan since 2008.

Dr. ANNE H.J. LEE (South Korea)

(Author, Researcher and Director of plant-based ‘Temple Food Academy’)

Dr. Anne H.J. Lee, educated in Canada (PhD in Geography and Environmental Management; MBA specialized in Food, Hotel and Tourism Management) currently is the Managing Director oftheplant-based‘TempleFoodAcademy’(ThePhilosopherChef’sTable)inSouthKorea. Anne works with the temple food master, Venerable Jeongkwan, addressing eco-friendly, old-fashioned eating-well practices in order to serve the world in which all people in the globe live together harmoniously. Anne collaborated on a research report book published and funded by United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) where she edited the entire research project and wrote the Introduction Chapter (Citation: ‘World Tourism Organization and Korea Culture & Tourism Institute, Case Studies of Traditional Cultural Accommodations in the Republic of Korea, Japan and China, UNWTO, Madrid, Spain). Recently, she published a research article in the Journal of Gastronomy and Tourism: Temple Food As A Sustainable Tourism Attraction: Eco-Gastronomic Buddhist Heritage And Regional Development In South Korea (2020). Her ongoing research is focused on transforming the global food system through sustainable, plant-based eco-friendly eating practices in the context of regional tourism development through place branding.


(Vegan Food Consultant, Product & Recipe Developer, Founder of Granny’s Bowl Online Vegan Meal Delivery)

Jayalaxmi is a vegan food consultant and product developer, with a passion for veganising the most challenging of recipes. In 2016, she started Granny’s Bowl, dedicated to her grandmother who was a symbol of silent strength and a master chef. Granny’s Bowl is an online/cloud kitchen vegan food delivery service delivering fresh homemade vegan meals daily to people across Pune, India. They have earned a reputation for customising meals to suit their customers needs and being able to veganise almost everything. Some of her signature dishes and customer favourites include Mock Meat Biryani, Raw Vegan Tiramisu, Vegan Mac n Cheese and the Tofu Zinger Burger among others. Jayalaxmi also specialises in dishing out raw vegan starters, mains and desserts, raw vegan cakes, oil-free meals as well as multi-cuisine vegan catering.


(Vegan Travel Program & Project Coordinator)

Zac is the co-founder of VegVoyages Vegan Adventure Tours and the VegVoyages Foundation. He spends his time sharing his passion for animals, traveling, local vegan food, and bringing people together by bridging cultural gaps throughout the 8 different countries VegVoyages trips go to every year. In 1990, Zac left America to work on a film in Asia where he has been living and working ever since. Based out of Jakarta (Indonesia), Zac spends most of the year living out of his suitcase exploring local vegan cuisines while coordinating vegan cultural exchange groups and promoting vegan activism across the continent, his home for the past 3 decades.

Dr. KARUNAS ZHU (Taiwan)

(Vegan Activist & Founder of Taiwan Vegan Academy)

Dr. Karunas Zhu is the co-founder of the World Vegan Organisation. For decades Dr. Karunas Zhu, a life science graduate from NTU (National Taiwan University), has dedicated himself to promoting the vegan lifestyle, anti-ageing, vegan nutrition and vegan industrial study and research. He founded the Taiwan Vegan Academy in 2016 and coordinates various plant-based promoting programs across Taiwan every year both on a regional as well as national levels.


(Wildlife Conservationist & Zoologist)

Awarded the Officer of the Most Excellent Order (OBE) of the British Empire for his services to the environment and conservation, Dr. Singleton is the world’s foremost expert on the Sumatran Orangutan and is leading the fight to save them and their habitat. A zoologist, he joined with the Swiss-based PanEco Foundation and Yayasan Ekosistem Lestari in 2001 to establish the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Programme (SOCP). As director of the SOCP, he, and 90+ local staff, rescue captive orangutans and return them to life in the wild, conduct field research, monitor closely the last remaining Sumatran orangutan populations in an effort to protect their habitat, and have developed the incredible Orangutan Haven sanctuary. The Haven is a solution for orangutans that can’t be returned to the wild due to health reasons where they can live out their days, and be ambassadors for improving people’s perceptions of nature, promote animal welfare, and raise awareness to the public on the impact of their decisions on the environment. Dr. Singleton is looking forward to sharing with local conservationists his experiences on protecting endangered species and their habitats.


(Editor-in-Chief, VegWorld Magazine & Vegan Social Media Strategist)

Courtney Garza is a passionate vegan who brings her love for journalism, creativity, helping local businesses, and animals together with her compassionate social media agency, Sprinkles Creative, that aids veg-conscious businesses with their branding strategy. Courtney also owns and operates VegWorld Magazine, an international vegan lifestyle publication, as the editor-in-chief to curate and promote plant-based stories about vegan products, services, and individuals from all walks of life.


(Vegan Promoter, Writer and Certified Plant-Based Health Coach)

Karin Olsen is the founder of Plant Power Productions, a company focused on promoting a whole-food/plant-based/vegan lifestyle. Karin believes food is medicine and is passionate about helping people heal through plants-not-pills. She is a freelance writer and reviewer, and consults with VegWorld Magazine in editorial, marketing and sales. She is a certified health coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and continues her studies in functional health coaching. She also teaches cooking classes, and is earning culinary certifications through Rouxbe’s Professional Plant-Based Certification Course and Matthew Kenney’s Food Future Institute. She has practised Bikram Yoga for 30 years and is a certified yoga teacher.


(Vegan Ayurvedic Doctor & Nutritionist)

Dr. Vidya is an award-winning plant-based ayurvedic doctor (Summa cum Laude) clinical nutritionist, speaker, blogger and writer. She was awarded “Ayurvisharada” for academic excellence. During her clinical practice in the USA, she was conferred the prestigious Vagbhata Award by AAPNA (Association of Ayurvedic Physicians of North America). Dr. Vidya through her enterprise Promotive Health and Nutrition conducts events, health awareness camps, talk shows and support groups for vegan transitions. She is currently working on several projects like veganising a restaurant chain in India with 110 restaurants and social experiments to understand the food system of different countries. She loves teaching and mentoring, and conducts training programs on plant-based nutrition, Ayurveda and responsible medicine.


(Vegan Travel Writer & Luxury Hotel Vegan Consultant)

Paul is co-founder of Vegan Food Quest and a long time contributor to A Luxury Travel Blog. Based in Siem Reap, Cambodia he has visited and written about more than 130 luxury hotels and resorts throughout the region in an effort to raise awareness and increase plant-based food options at luxury hotels. His vegan-friendly luxury hotel and resort reviews on Vegan Food Quest are very popular and the largest of its kind. He consults and offers training to F&B teams, and menu consultancy regarding vegan diets. He has helped hotels, resorts and restaurants understand and meet the demand from the ever-growing number of vegan travellers. In collaboration with the WVO Vegan Sister City hospitality industry workshop series at The Himalayan Vegan Festival, Paul looks forward to helping hospitality managers in Nepal and Bhutan make their luxury hotels, resorts and restaurants more vegan-friendly, and more marketable, for the growing number of vegan travelers.


(Founder of Climate Healers, Human, Earth & Animal Liberation Activist)

Dr. Sailesh Rao has over three decades of professional experience and is the Founder and Executive Director of Climate Healers, a non-profit dedicated towards healing the Earth’s climate. A systems specialist with a Ph. D. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University, Dr. Rao worked on the internet communications infrastructure for twenty years after graduation. During this period, he led the transformation of early analog internet connections to more robust digital connections that also ran ten times faster. In 2006, he switched careers and became deeply immersed, full time, in solving the environmental crises affecting humanity. Dr. Rao is the author of two books, Carbon Dharma: The Occupation of Butterflies and Carbon Yoga: The Vegan Metamorphosis, and has been involved with numerous documentaries tackling climate change. Dr. Rao is a Human, Earth and Animal Liberation (HEAL) activist, husband, dad, and since 2010, a star-struck grandfather. He is currently working tirelessly on behalf of his generation to fulfill a pinky promise to his granddaughter, Kimaya (seen in the photo), and her generation that the world will be largely Vegan and well on the way towards a sustainable, thriving future before she turns 16 in 2026.


(Founder of Manavsewa Ashram, Social Vegan Activist & Youth Mobilizer)

Ramji Adhikari is the founder of Manavsewa Ashram – a non-profit motive social organization which has been conducting Humanity Amplification Movement all over the nation by providing service of food, shelter, medication, skill development, and family rehabilitation to the needy, homeless, physically and mentally challenged people who are not recognized by the society too. Till the date, Mr. Adhikari has been facilitating thousands of youth on positive living and leadership development. He is a many in one package as youth mentor, life coach, social activist, career planner etc. He has been honored by Janasewa Shree Padak – 2075 by Honorable President of Nepal along with dozens of other recognitions. Besides the active involvement in Manavsewa Ashram, he is also involved in Thoughts for Super Living as a founder secretary, Lions Club of Intellectual as a founder member etc.


(Nutrition & Lifestyle Coach, Vegan Cooking Teacher)

Vinita Contractor is a holistic nutrition and lifestyle coach. She is a Certified Holistic Nutritionist from American Fitness Professionals & Associates, USA and has completed the Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate from eCornell and T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies, New York. She has been featured several times in publications such as Mumbai Mirror, Mid-Day, Asian Age, The Hindu, Hindustan Times, Live Mint, VeganFirst, LBB etc. Vinita offers nutrition and lifestyle coaching programs which focus on various aspects of health such as providing a sound health & nutritional foundation, on-going support to her clients and has worked with people with cholesterol, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, PCOS and thyroid issues. She has founded The Leaf E-academy to make healthy cooking and eating accessible for everyone. She has conducted over 125 in-person and online workshops and demos in cities in India, Indonesia, Singapore and the UK. Vinita’s specialties include vegan Satvic food and Fermented Foods – which she looks forward to sharing with everyone at the festival.


(Plant-based Nutrition & Holistic Health Coach)

Bhavna Kapoor is one of the first health coaches specialising in plant-based nutrition in India. As a certified Holistic Health Coach from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, New York, she specializes in plant-based nutrition and cooking. She has 30 years of training in Iyengar Yoga and is deeply devoted to the study and practice of healing through natural food and living. She integrates all her learnings of plant-based nutrition, natural hygiene, yoga and mindfulness into a uniquely holistic approach to health. Bhavna’s personal experience of healing severe gut issues through a plant-based lifestyle awakened in her the desire to spread and share this lifestyle. A prolific writer and blogger, her work and recipes have featured in major dailies such as Mumbai Mirror, Mid-Day, The Times of India, and The Week. She has hosted a health show on Radio One (Mumbai) and has an online cookery show called ‘Healthy Vegan Cooking with Bhavna Kapoor’. Bhavna runs a bi-yearly retreat in the Himalayas called Nurture.


(Environmental Activist)

At the age of 19, Shilshila declined a fully funded MBBS Scholarship from the Nepal Government to pursue Environmental Science and to do her part to solve the growing environmental problems around the world. She completed her Masters from Nepal and Norway. She played leading role in changing policy to ban plastic bags in Nepal. 16 years later, her passion for sustainability has only deepened. Shilshila is a sustainability practitioner & advocate, green entrepreneur and a mother. She is a director at Avni Center for Sustainability, a non-profit and Avni Ventures, a recycling company with the largest recycling Network in Nepal


(Documentary Filmmaker, Vegan & Animal Rights Activist)

Dr. Harsha Atmakuri left his job as Drug Safety Physician and Medical Writer back in May 2018 to become a full-time independent animal rights activist to fight oppression done to the most innocent victims in the world – animals. He raises awareness about the violence that humans inflict on other sentient beings as part of our social condition through our lifestyle, primarily through our dietary habits. He does various forms of awareness campaigns on veganism and animal rights. In addition to producing, directing and editing short documentaries regarding veganism and animal rights, he also promotes animal rights and veganism through public outreaches, lectures in colleges and institutions, designing digital outreach posters, providing research and analysis, writing articles and conducting interviews. Harsha's upcoming feature documentary film on animal rights will be premiered at The Himalayan Vegan Festival. He's also the founder of the photoblog - Vegans of India.


(Environment & Sustainable Agriculture Advocates)

After the success of the “Pune Health and Sustainability Conference” (under the banner of “Climate Healers of Pune”) at the end of 2019, the conference’s co-organisers, Madhavi Kolte (sculptor and environmentalist) and Julie Wayne (photographer, environmentalist and animal rights activist), understood the necessity of creating a grassroots, pan-Indian organisation to address the deleterious effects of animal agriculture specifically in India, to propose solutions to these crises and to create a practical, replicable and sustainable agricultural model (via Urvarasa) that answers the question: “What could our food system look like when we include all sentient beings in our moral framework?” Madhavi and Julie were joined by Sanjeev Naik (software engineer and environmentalist) and in January 2020, Jeeva Bhavana was born. In January 2021, Madhavi, Sanjeev and Julie were thrilled to welcome Aakash Zure (computer engineer, animal rights activist and agriculture enthusiast) as the Project Coordinator of Urvarasa.


(Animal Activist and Vegan Documentary Producer)

Dolly Vyas-Ahuja is an animal activist, public speaker, and vegan documentary producer. Her upcoming feature film, The Land of Ahimsa, encourages Indians to adopt the vegan way of life. One of Vyas-Ahuja’s goals is to encourage India’s temples to become cruelty- free and ban the use of dairy products. She has spoken at a variety of venues and events around the world, including the World Vegan Conference in New Delhi, Rowdy Girl Sanctuary, LA Reggae Veg Fest, Vegan Radio, Rice University, and the Consulate of India in New York.


(Founder of Tofurky and Turtle Island Foods - the world’s pioneer in vegan food products, and Tempeh Expert)

Seth Tibbott is Founder of the world famous Tofurky and Turtle Island Foods company, which he built and grew over almost 40 years from a $2,500 startup into a family-owned global brand worth over $100 million. A pioneer in the meatless food industry, Seth developed his company keeping true to his environmental and animal advocacy beliefs. The Tofurky brand includes over 40 different vegan, cruelty-free food products from the ever-famous Tofurky and vegan sausages, to vegan sandwich slices, vegan ham and non-dairy cheeses, which are sold in 27,000+ stores worldwide. As a family-owned company, Seth has enabled Tofurky to continue its original vision and commitment to “purpose over profit” supporting animal rescues, sanctuaries, and environmental organizations, and maintaining a business that contributes to society rather than takes from it. A master tempeh maker, enthusiast and advocate, Seth has also been making his own tempeh from scratch since 1980 and looks forward to sharing his knowledge and love for tempeh with others attending the festival.


(Yoga & Sound Healing Artist, Designer, Co-founder of Tokyo Vegan)

Yukari Iwamoto is a certified Zuddha Yoga teacher and sound healing artist whose passion is to promote an ethical, mindful and creative way of living in harmony with nature. She takes people on a journey to a deeper meditation through her holistic approach of pranayama breathing, inspiring yoga asanas and healing sounds with a Tibetan singing bowl and a hang drum. She is also a co-founder of Tokyo Vegan, a not-for-profit organization that supports the vegan community to grow through holding social events and participating in vegan-related policy meetings with the Ministries of Japan and the All-party Parliamentary Group "Veggie Giren" / Vege Council. She holds a master's degree from Royal College of Art in UK.


(Founder of Brazilian Vegetarian Society & Former Chairperson of the International Vegetarian Union)

Marly Winckler is the founder of the Brazilian Vegetarian Society, and was the President of the BVS from 2003 to 2015 (she’s now the Honorary President). By profession, Marly is a sociologist and translator who has translated more than 60 books including the groundbreaking vegan activism books Animal Liberation by Peter Singer and Becoming Vegetarian by Vesanto Melina and Brenda Davis, among others. She created “Sitio Vegetariano”– the first webpage on vegetarianism in Portuguese–and the first discussion lists on vegetarianism in Portuguese and Spanish: veg-brasil and veg-latina. She was also the Chairperson of the International Vegetarian Union from 2011-2014 / 2018. Marly has been Vegetarian since 1983 and is a prominent vegan activist. She organized the 36th IVU World Vegetarian Congress held in 2004.


(Elephant Veterinarian & Human-Elephant Conflict Expert)

Dr Deepani Jayantha is the Elephant Specialist and Country Representative at Elemotion Foundation. She is a dedicated conservationist and is a graduate of the University of Peradeniya in veterinary management of both captive and wild elephants at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science. Deepani has done extensive research, projects, and publications, for well over a decade, that include post-release monitoring studies of the rehabilitated and released wild juvenile elephants of the Elephant Transit Home. She works closely with villages and communities to promote Human Elephant Co-Existence and to mitigate Human-Elephant conflict. She is also involved in community conservation and education projects to promote welfare of Sri Lankan captive elephants and responsible tourism.


(Vegan Environmentalist & Founder of Sadhana Forest)

Aviram Rozin is a vegan environmentalist living with his family in Auroville, Tamil Nadu. He moved to India in 2002, and a year later founded Sadhana Forest. The family settled on a barren piece of land and slowly, with the help of many volunteers, turned it into a vibrant Tropical Dry Evergreen Forest. Their dedication to veganism and their low-carbon footprint lifestyle have inspired many. Aviram’s vision is to reclaim barren lands around the world by establishing indigenous, drought-resistant food forests. He especially enjoys starting new projects and building relationships with local people. In the last few years he has been involved in scientific research in the fields of biodiversity and biomineralization of carbon. Aviram is a member of the Global Restoration Council and a board member of the Foundation for World Education.


(Director, Japan Vegetarian Society (JPVS)

Vegetarian since 1999, Eiko is a polyglot simultaneous interpreter (she speaks Japanese, English, Spanish, French, Brazilian Portuguese and little Romanian) and a tour guide in Kyoto, Japan. She wrote her first book “A Little Book of Zen” in 2020. In her seminar, she will share with you the wonderful world and history of Japanese Zen, Cha-No-Yu tea ceremony, Shojin-Ryouri Zen Vegan foods since 13th century, Zazen Zen meditation, Karesansui Zen garden, and an amazing connection with Tibetan buddhism. Eiko will bring a peace of Zen from Japan and hoping that the participants shall enjoy and learn about Zen teachings accompanied with the finest incense and Gyokuro green tea from Uji, Kyoto!


((Vegan Activist & Chair - World Vegan Organisation Singapore)

Jennifer Tan Sok Lim was officially appointed as ambassador-at-large of the World Vegan Organisation (WVO) and also the chair of WVO Singapore. In 2019, she was voted as one of the top 10 chinese vegans in China. Besides promoting veganism in Singapore, she also travelled overseas to appoint local vegans in their respective countries to promote veganism. In early 2020 ,she set up the first pioneer vegan club in JitSin High School, the top school of Malaysia. She’s been developing vegan recipes for the past 39 years and have assisted food industries and restaurants in vegan recipes and products.


(Founder ‘For Them’ Foundation, Jivamukti Yoga Practitioner and Instructor)

Rebeca had her first experience with Jivamukti Yoga in Sydney, Australia. The discovery of Yoga philosophy ignited a burning desire to expand and transform. In this environment, the universal law of cause and effect became very apparent. She trusts in the necessity for consistent, regular practice to experience and deepen the understanding of the common nature of all beings. In her teachings, she tries to raise awareness by creating a space that is progressive towards equality. She has founded For Them Foundation, with the aspiration to educate and create compassionate actions in our society through the teachings of Yoga to alleviate the suffering of all animals. Rebeca had her first experience with Jivamukti Yoga in Sydney, Australia. The discovery of Yoga philosophy ignited a burning desire to expand and transform. In this environment, the universal law of cause and effect became very apparent. She trusts in the necessity for consistent, regular practice to experience and deepen the understanding of the common nature of all beings. In her teachings, she tries to raise awareness by creating a space that is progressive towards equality. She has founded For Them Foundation, with the aspiration to educate and create compassionate actions in our society through the teachings of Yoga to alleviate the suffering of all animals.


(Certified Yoga Instructor, Content Creator)

Pradaini Surva is a yoga practitioner, certified yoga instructor and a self love coach from Chennai, Tamilnadu, India. She works as content creator in Instagram promoting a plant based lifestyle and mindful living.

Dr. CHANG-HO AHN (South Korea)

Adjunct professor at Semyung University, co-founder of Daebo Myungga restaurant, Son Ae Son, director of the Fermented Food Research Institute)

Dr. Chang-ho Ahn is Doctor of Science in Korean/Oriental medicine-food and fermented food. He is adjunct Professor at Semyung University, co-founder of Daebo Myungga restaurant, Son Ae Son, director of the Fermented Food Research Institute and former director of the research institute affiliated with the Korean Traditional Vinegar Association. He has received the Grand Prize Award in 2008 Korea Oriental Food Contest and 2018 Presidential Commendation Award for Educational Service Merit.

SONGHEE PARK (South Korea)

(Korean Temple Food Specialist)

Korean temple food specialist, Ms. Songhee Park had worked at Cheonjinam hermitage as an assistant of temple food master, venerable Jeongkwan. At the monastery preparation and demonstration of temple food cooking was her responsibility that took place every Sunday morning for international visitors. While working at the hermitage, she participated in many international temple food events held in Rome, USA, Berlin, Switzerland, UK, France. One of the special events held in the New York City was to promote the 2018 Pyeongchang WinterOlympics.Shereceived‘theNationalAssemblyPresidentAward’intheKimchi making section of the ‘Korea International Culinary Contest’ hosted by the ‘Korea Food Tourism Association’. Currently, she works at Gwangju Oasis Cancer Rehabilitation Hospital for the program called, ‘Natural Dining Table’.


(Founder at Save Elephant Foundation, Elephant Conservationist)

Lek is an award-winning conservationist who has been working for over two decades to improve the lives of elephants in Asia and advance their welfare. Her work has received international acclaim and has been documented by National Geographic, Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, the BBC, DW, and CNN as well as in print media around the world, including The Guardian, USA Today, and Forbes. She has received widespread recognition for her work protecting elephants, including being honored as one of six Women Heroes of Global Conservation in 2010 by Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, one of TIME Magazine’s Heroes of Asia in 2005, the Ford Foundation’s Hero of the Planet in 2001, and with the Genesis Award from the Humane Society of the United States in 2003 and 2019.


(The Specialist of Permaculture in S. Korea)

Dr. Lim Kyoungsoo received PhD in Environmental Engineering from Seoul National University, studied permaculture in Australia and has been working on ecologically developing Korean rural areas. In 2000, he founded a social enterprise called E-jang, and for 10 years, he worked on creating village development plans for about 100 rural areas and doing projects related to about 10 local governments. In this process, he focused on promoting citizen participation in various initiatives. In particular, in the central region of Korea, a new ecological and communitybased village with 34 households was created, creating a model for Korea’s energy self-reliant village and social housing. Living in Wanju-gun since 2010, he has developed Wanju-gun into a center of local food and social economy in Korea. He has written three books in this field because he is interested in people and the phenomenon of people migrating from cities to rural areas. He is writing a book related to rural education based on his experience of raising three children in Wanju rural area. Currently, he is a professor at Jeonju-Kijeon College, but he is still making efforts to ecologically develop Wanju-gun, especially Gosan-Myeon region where he is active.


(Vegan Activist & Motivational Speaker)

Paul Pornthep SriNarula is the founding president of BIVA (Bangkok International Vegan Alliance), a holistic health and vegan educator, motivational speaker and digital talk show host. A vegan for the past 35 years, Mr. SriNarula has been instrumental in growing the vegan movement in Bangkok and regularly undertakes vegan educational and outreach programmes in institutions and communities through not only the city of Bangkok, but also throughout Thailand and Southeast Asia.


(Forest and Wildlife Conservationist, Environmental Researcher)

DEV NARAYAN MANDAL is a post graduate in Environment and Sustainable Development from Indira Gandhi National Open University, New Delhi, India. He has fifteen years of experience in forest and wildlife conservation through community based conservation methods. He has research experience in Snakes and snake-bite incidents in Terai region, Nepal and carries with him decade of experience in wildlife rescue, handling, relocation and rehabilitation. Snake conservation is his passion and snake-bite mitigation is his initiation for the communities and the species alike. He spends most of his time to disseminate awareness among communities regarding human-snake co-existence. His good communication skills and methods of conservation works have been well recognized for restoration of a diminished, Dhanushadham Protection Forest. He is actively involved in research and has led many case studies related to the wildlife in Madhesh Province, Nepal. His contribution to the restoration of forest land, interventions in communities and towards the enhancement of community based conservation is unparalleled.


(Plant-based Nutritionist & Holistic Health Coach, Founder of Nourish with Upasana Bijoor)

Upasana Bijoor is a plant-based nutritionist and a holistic health coach. She truly believes that nature has given us everything we need to thrive, in the form of plant foods. She switched to a plant-based diet after her health struggle and saw the immense benefits it brought to her life and made it her mission to learn more about the plant-based lifestyle. She completed the e-Cornell Plant Based Nutrition Certificate course from center for nutrition studies by Dr. T. Colin Campbell and a yearlong diploma at Institute of Integrative Nutrition NYC where she studied holistic healing modalities. She is currently pursuing functional medicine nutrition studies and believes that education should always be part of one’s growth. She has helped many clients switch to nutritious whole food plant-based lifestyle where she draws the focus on unprocessed plant foods and their healing properties. She has played a vital role in reversing diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure, arthritis, migraines, autoimmune conditions like psoriasis, hormonal imbalances, and other chronic lifestyle conditions, in several clients across the globe. Her dream is to see a world without suffering and people living long, healthy, medicine-free lives.


(Founder of Aakaariyaa, Holistic Health Coach)

Deepali is the founder of Aakaariyaa, a complete plant-based brand in Chennai, India! Deepali is a part of India’s first all-vegan food court and serves exclusively vegan food in Chennai! Being one of the first brands to bloom in the city, it has been blooming ever since! She won the Homepreneur awards in the food and beverage category and has set up a plant-based meal subscription service in Chennai! Accredited with being a Holistic Health Coach, she aims to create an impact through her brand, bringing about a wholesome environmental change with lifestyle, wellness and food!


(Aspiring Lawyer, Vegan Food Blogger & Advocate)

Shova Bhujel is an aspiring lawyer, who procured bar license recently and a law student pursuing masters degree in Nepal Law Campus specializing in criminal law and constitutional law. She is a co-organizer at Kathmandu Animal Save where they have been advocating for veganism and targeting Nepalese youths to get active for animals. She also does veganism related food content in the form of blogging through her Instagram account named life_places_food. As a young law student, she observed that there were many people active for human rights but only handful advocating for non-human animal rights, understanding that oppressions are inter-linked, she strives for better society through intersectional veganism.


(Permaculture and Plant Based Diet Promoter, Independent Filmmaker)

Yubraj Maski is former Teacher and an Independent Filmmaker. He has served in various Social Service Organisations like Jaycees International, Nepal Scout, Amnesty International and Film Development Board Nepal etc. He is passionate of Permaculture, Healthy Cooking, Hiking, Non-Violence and Meditation.


(Co-organizer Kathmandu Animal Save, Graphic Designer)

Dipesh Shrestha is the co-organizer of Kathmandu Animal Save, an organization to break down the speciesist view of nonhuman animals with outreach and community building. Seeing the total lack of awareness about cruelties done to nonhuman species, he started with giving presentations in schools to students from grades 8 to 10. Dipesh and his team work with animal rights organizations and vegan restaurants to bring light to animal exploitations and create a vegan-friendly society in Kathmandu.


(Co-founder of Animal Rights Club (ARC) and a founding member of World Vegan Organisation Nepal (WVON)

Witnessing the cruel practice of animal sacrifice in various festivals for a long time, he shifted himself towards living a compassionate life when he was 10 years old. He always wanted to help the animals. That’s why he co-founded ARC to advocate for animal welfare/rights issues in his community. Since founding ARC in 2012, Shrestha has directed the organization’s growth into a leading force in the prevention of cruelty to animals and promotion of compassionate food choices. A recognized speaker on animal advocacy, wildlife, and environment conservation, Shrestha has presented at schools and many other forums. Through his work with ARC, Shrestha has been an outspoken advocate for animal rights.


(Climate Change Communicator, Outreach and Engagement Manager at Climate Interactive)

Bindu Bhandari is a climate change campaigner turned communicator from Nepal. Over the last eight years, she has worked in different capacities with a wide range of institutions to deliver climate change training and workshops for youth networks, educators and business groups around the globe. Currently, she works with a not-for-profit think tank called Climate Interactive. Her work focuses on using interactive climate tools to deliver system insights that are policy-relevant for mitigating climate change with equitable policies. Ms Bhandari was a Chevening scholar and holds a masters degree in Climate Change Science and Policy from the University of Bristol.


(Fashion Designer and Make-Up Artist)

Anjila Shrestha is a fashion designer graduated vvfrom IEC college of Art & fashion. She is a certified makeup artist and freelanced stylist. She is specilized in Recyling, Reusing and sustainable fashion designing. She actively talks about creulty free lifestyle on her contents and tries to bring light to sustainability in a fun way.


(Volunteer for Change Program Coordinator at CREASION)

Abish is a youth-culture and environmental enthusiast. He is the former organizer of Kathmandu Climate Save, a Nepali chapter of the Save Movement, and former Desk Editor at WAVE Magazine, Nepal’s first English youth magazine. He has been a part of the environmental activism movement advocating a plant-based diet for a healthy planet.