San Jose–Area Teen May Be the ‘Coolest Vegan Alive’

peta2's National Contest Seeks Two Special Young Animal Advocates for Trophies, National Spotlight

For Immediate Release:
July 20, 2015

Contact:
Lakisha Ridley 202-483-7382

San Jose, Calif. – The first-ever Coolest Vegan Alive contest is underway—courtesy of peta2, PETA’s youth division—and 16-year-old Fremont resident Phoebe Collver-Freeland could take home top honors. The high school sophomore beat out entrants from across the country to be named one of 12 finalists, and voters will now help peta2 decide which two finalists it should select for the top prize—which includes a personalized Web feature, a prize pack containing cruelty-free goodies, and a Coolest Vegan Alive trophy.

Phoebe is setting social media on fire with her “art activism.” She creates animal rights–inspired duct-tape wallets bearing messages such as “Free the Orcas” and “McCruelty,” which have already inspired others to ditch meat and dairy foods. A lifelong vegan, she dedicated herself to making a difference for animals after receiving a PETA book for her 11th birthday and learning how animals suffer in the meat, egg, and dairy industries. Now, as a member of peta2’s Street Team—a group of young people from across the country who help animals—she’s completed hundreds of “missions,” or actions for animals, including urging SeaWorld to send the orcas at its parks to coastal sanctuaries. She also currently serves on peta2’s Youth Advisory Board, offering ideas to help make peta2 bigger and better.

“Whether she’s creating animal-friendly art or encouraging her friends to try tasty vegan food, Phoebe’s creativity and passion make her a star for animals,” says PETA Director of Youth Outreach and Campaigns Marta Holmberg. “By going vegan and encouraging others to make kind choices, Phoebe and peta2’s other entrants are already winners.”

Voting to help peta2 determine whom it should choose as the winners ends on July 28, and the winners will be featured on the website on August 4. peta2—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—will consider three factors when selecting winners: contestants’ actions for animals, their enthusiasm, and their total number of votes.

For more information and full contest details, please see peta2.me/CoolestVegan.

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“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