Rochester Teacher Is a Finalist in PETA’s ‘Sexiest Vegan Over 50’ Contest

Heart Attack Survivor Battles It Out to Take Home Top Honors—and a Free Luxury Cruise

For Immediate Release:
September 20, 2017

David Perle 202-483-7382

Rochester, N.Y. – PETA Prime is preparing to crown this year’s Sexiest Vegan Over 50—and Rochester resident Doug Schmidt is vying for the title. He beat out entrants from across the country to advance to the final round of six contestants. Visitors to PETA Prime’s Facebook page can now help the group select the lucky winners (one man and one woman), who will each receive a 10-day luxury cruise, courtesy of Holistic Holiday at Sea.

At 49 years old, Schmidt had a heart attack and realized that his life would be on the line if he didn’t make some changes. Nine years later, he has shed 60 pounds, is off all heart medications, and is training for a marathon—and he credits vegan eating with giving him a new lease on life. He uses his position as a primary school teacher to encourage students to make kind choices in behalf of animals and has led two districtwide programs to help people make the transition to a vegan lifestyle.

“Whether in the classroom or on a marathon course, Doug serves as a role model for a healthier, more compassionate life,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “Each of the finalists in PETA Prime’s Sexiest Vegan Over 50 contest is a testament to how sexy vegans of all ages are, inside and out.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—notes that in addition to saving more than 100 animals every year from daily suffering and a terrifying death, people who go vegan are less prone to suffering from heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and obesity and are, on average, fitter and trimmer than meat-eaters.

Voting for the finalists to help PETA Prime determine whom it should select as the winners ends on September 27. PETA Prime will choose the winners based on several factors, including vote count. See the full contest details here. Winners will be notified and announced on October 4.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind