On Saturday, July 29th 2012 I had the honor of presenting alongside fashion icon and hero to animals John Bartlett, and Andrew Page, managing director of Wildlife at the Humane Society of the United States. The Taking Action for Animals conference is an annual conference held in Washington D.C. that provides people with opportunities to collaborate, learn, and take more effective action as animal advocates.

Our panel, “Fighting Fur From Within – Working With Designers and Retailers” — Fur Panel at Taking Action for Animals 2012 focused on challenging the fur industry from inside fashion culture. John Bartlett, now vegan, was once known for his leather designs and had even used fur in the past, shared insights and anecdotes from his involvement with CFDA to conversations he’s had with popular designers (who you’d be surprised to hear have serious qualms with the fur they use). Andrew provided facts, figures and the current laws governing international fur farming and trapping. Traps were passed around the audience. Confiscated samples of real fur were compared to the latest faux, and I spoke about the semiotics of animals in the fashion system. (for more info on my Fashion & Animals presentation, click here)