Judy Ki Has Retired to a Career of Advocating For Sharks, Chickens, Pigs, and Politically Courageous Candidates
The family meals of Judy Ki’s Hong Kong childhood paved the way for her current whole foods, plant-based diet. She grew up in the Chinese tradition of eating fresh veggie dishes with only small amounts of meat and fish. Judy’s mom taught her to respect animals, including the lizards whose role was to keep down the insect population in the family garden.
Judy, a humane advocate, political activist, and retired middle school science teacher, is a San Diego neighbor. I admired Judy’s work, meeting her at community events and through Facebook, where Judy describes herself as “proud bunny-hugging, bleeding-heart, do-gooder.” She took the time to share her path to activism with me recently over a bountiful salad and baked potato lunch.
At age 20, Judy moved to the US for educational opportunities. She chose California because she disliked cold weather.
An environmental caucus of the Democratic Party in San Diego in 2007 was a turning point for Judy. “A beautiful young blonde lady gave me a Vegan Outreach pamphlet. The year before I had read the book Fast Food Nation and was shocked at the treatment of animals raised for food. After reading the pamphlet on the realities of factory farming, I knew I had to take action,” Judy recalls. She had just retired from a 27 year career with the San Diego Unified School District, and finally had time to devote to activism.
She started by going to Washington DC for the Taking Action for Animals conference sponsored by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). Meanwhile Judy was slowly transitioning her diet. She had stopped eating factory farmed animals right after getting the Vegan Outreach pamphlet. She still consumed some sea animals, but tapered off these choices. Soon she was happily sticking to a 100% plant-based diet.