Circle of Sisters (COS), produced and hosted by WBLS-FM, HOT 97, WLIB – AM and Emmis Communications, is the largest expo for women of color in New York, and will feature VeganSmart among 200 other vendors and small businesses. COS is an opportunity for African American women to come together and feel empowered by all the speakers, vendors, and events offered throughout the weekend. VeganSmart is proud to show the African American community how common health issues within the community may be alleviated with a vegan lifestyle.
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John Lewis, one of the founders of VeganSmart, will also be attending the Circle of Sisters event in New York City October 15 and 16th. He shared his excitement for reuniting with long time friend and Circle of Sisters speaker, John Salley. Fellow advocate of a plant based lifestyle, John Salley will be speaking about the benefits of living a vegan lifestyle. Not only is John Lewis aka BadAss Vegan ready to reacquaint himself with old friends, he is ready to make new ones as well.
Common, hip hop recording artist, actor, and poet, will also be in attendance at Circle of Sisters hosting a discussion of his own. Both Common and John have many mutual friends. Lewis even expressed his hopes of finally meeting the artist in person. As a close friend of Common’s personal chef (a plant based advocate), John believes they are more alike than we know!
Circle of Sisters isn’t only about the guest speakers. It is about empowering women. John believes that it is important to show women, especially African American women, how powerful they are. VeganSmart and John Lewis are proud to be apart of a movement that allows women to learn about their bodies and how to keep themselves, their families, and their friends healthy. As an African American owned business, VeganSmart hopes to share the mentality that health starts with what you put into your glass.
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VeganSmart began as a dream for founders Kareem Cook and Claude Tellis. They moved to LA with the intention to start a business and haven’t looked back. Upon their arrival they noticed that there was a 40% child obesity rate in LA, and that began their journey to promote a healthy lifestyle. By 2003, they had helped ban junk food in high schools and middle schools across LA. By 2004, this savvy duo decided it was time to take their business skills to the next level.
The alumni network at Duke University, their alma mater, spread their desire to help the African American community overcome many of the diseases that are found commonly among the community with various businesses. These businessmen convinced the network to invest in a family office they could control, and eventually acquired Naturade.
With a goal to prevent illnesses, such as diabetes, from continuing to plague the African American community, Kareem and Claude ventured to create VeganSmart. Now a success, VeganSmart, inspires people of all races to be sexy, beautiful, and fit. With a tasty easy to use protein powder and positive outlook on a healthy lifestyle Kareem and Claude have managed to make veganism cool. Their story and determination to help people worldwide is why events like Circle of Sisters mean so much to the VeganSmart family.