2024 Indy Vegfest PRESENTERs

Amanda Reninger

Owner, Sea Salt & Cinnamon
Amanda Reninger is the owner of Sea Salt & Cinnamon, a vegan food company based in Muncie, Indiana, and has been vegan for over 10 years. After having very high cholesterol in their 20's, Amanda and her partner, Kyle, went vegan for their health. Learning about ethical veganism and relating their love of animals to that, was the next step that helped them decide to make commitments to being fully vegan, and they haven't looked back since. As a classically trained musician, Amanda found a connection between music and baking and often says, "music is all math with a creative component and baking is all math with a creative component, so it just makes sense to me." She started Sea Salt & Cinnamon in 2014 and has grown the business from "just her and some cupcakes" to having a full team, a storefront and a strong wholesale reach all over the state of Indiana. At the end of 2023, Amanda closed the storefront and scaled back to cottage baking. This has been the best decision for her and her family. You can still find her treats at the local Muncie farmers market and for order through her website. The Sea Salt & Cinnamon mission is to invite people into compassion for themselves, others and the animals we share this planet with. They have done this through supporting their community in Muncie, and throughout Indiana. Amanda has been featured on "Where is Sherman?" Fox59's show, multiple times, as well as other local Indy stations, and Sea Salt & Cinnamon has been recognized by Indy VegFest voted Best Bakery in Indy multiple times. She was also awarded the 2022 Indiana Small Business Development's Woman Owned Business of the Year. Amanda & Kyle live near Downtown Muncie with their rescue fur babies, 5 cats and 3 dogs.

Corey McDaniel

Owner, The Food Architect
My name is Corey McDaniel, also known as The Food Architect. I am a classically trained Chef turned alkaline Vegan committed to the enhancement of my community through the proper preparation of fresh flavorful plant-based soy-free dishes, Yoga (physical fitness), and most importantly public service. In 2011 I graduated from the Chef's Academy becoming a Certified Chef. I had always loved food and believed I was a health nut (due to my sports and weightlifting background) until I really learned more about food. Becoming a chef showed me the old saying was true, "a chef is a person’s first doctor". The new knowledge I gained of food opened up a new world of understanding. Now seeing the affect food choices and availability has on a community mentally and physically, I have made it my personal goal to be a "doctor" to those that need help. I have been fortunate to work at a number of restaurants across the country. I helped open Wala in Detroit, MI in 2012, and then worked in Atlanta and Savannah, GA until returning back to Indianapolis to open a food truck in 2014. From working in this industry I would often encounter homeless people hanging out by the dumpsters. It was against restaurant policy to give them food we were throwing out due to insurance issues. So even if people were waiting for food, we would have to place the food in dumpsters, and then let the homeless people get it out. It was sad to see. It seemed to literally take their dignity away. I vowed when I started my own business things would be different. In 2014 I started a feed the homeless initiative. For over 3 1/2 years now I have tried my best to feed 50-75 of our homeless residents each week. The cost for me to do this is approximately $1.75/person. I am paid each week for my time and energy by the love and gratitude exchanged from my homeless friends and the universe alike....and nothing else. I realized a long time ago, the distance between the “have” and “have nots” is not as big as we would like to believe. Each of us are just a few checks from being homeless ourselves. We must appreciate what we have been blessed with and through that, do our part to be a blessing to others. In 2011 I started to look deeper into the food I was prepping and preparing due to prior health issues. In 2005 I was diagnosed with MRSA. After my initial treatments I believed I was “cured”, only to find that whenever I ate chicken a MRSA outbreak would follow. I subsequently learned that the hormone-filled, pesticide-eating chicken I once loved was now the primary source of my problems. I started to notice issues with the quality of meat products bought, cooked and distributed by major suppliers. At first this really surprised me until I remembered something my Granddaddy once told me, “Just because you can eat it, doesn’t mean you should.” I had always been a picky eater. At around 10 years old I stopped eating chicken off the bone. I remember biting into a drumstick once; there was something about me ripping the flesh away and seeing the muscle fibers and tendons pop that grossed me out. At the age of 15 I stopped eating pork due to the influence of Malcolm X and the understanding of how close a pig’s structural make-up is to a human’s. By the time I was 17 years old, I was mentally ready to become a vegetarian, however my need to gain muscle mass to play college football stifled that thought. I was told without eating meat I would never get the vitamins and minerals I needed to excel physically on the field. It took years for me to disprove this idea. Each medicine used today is derived from a natural substance, even antidepressants. Chefs were the world’s first doctors and food was man’s first medicine. It is a known fact that feelings are created by chemical changes in the body. That’s right, your anger, love, lust, and even depression can be simplified into a chemical formula. That’s why in today’s time so many people dealing with depression are on some form of medication to help. Over the past 10 years a large and ever-growing body of evidence shows a well-balanced 100% plant-based diet is ideal to reach optimum human health. Wholegrains, beans, fruits, vegetables, seeds and nuts are foods that provide all the essential nutrients that we need not just to survive, but to reach the bodies and mental clarity most long for. Under the parameters of our western diets, we eat too much protein. Excessive protein consumption has been linked to a number of serious health problems. Studies show that balanced vegan diets provide sufficient amounts of protein, and increase the consumption of the fruits and vegetables needed to maintain and increase our overall health. You have been lied too. You have been taught wrong. The reason we, as a whole, suffer so much mentally, physically, and emotionally are due to the way we have been taught to eat. There is a reason our country’s food and drug regulations are handled by the same administration. In 1970, Henry Kissinger said, “Control oil and you control nations; control food and you control the people.” Throughout Urban, inner-city, lower income, brown and black neighborhoods, we are struggling. We are eating ourselves into psychosis, depression, obesity, hyperactivity, sexual deviancy, and more due to a lack of education and resources. In too many cases we are unable to engage in and maintain healthy relationships due to chemical coaching from the food we eat. We are being fed and medicated in a manner that leads to declining behavior placing us at the mercy of a bias system. There’s an epidemic today of our children being labeled “special needs” and “problem kids” due to overstimulation and altered reasoning resulting from everyday sugar-filled food choices. We are a nation full of drug addicts, addicted to salt, sugar, flesh, blood and the emotional connection to them. In our current economy, Illness causing foods, the doctor visits, medications, and the insurance associated with it is needed, and looking at our current food standards is wanted. Sickness is big business. In the same manner the slave master made money off the blood, sweat, and tears of my ancestors, this food/medical industry today is doing same thing. Yet what was once forced on us we now happily accept and perpetuate ourselves. Knowledge is not power. The application of knowledge however is. Once you know better it’s your responsibility to do better.

Evan Black

DJ Stylistic
Evan Black, also known as DJ Stylistic, is a local DJ here in Indianapolis. Stylistic has been DJing around Indianapolis for about 11 years and is a DJ instructor at Deckademics DJ School in Broad Ripple. He has been a DJ for the Indiana Pacers for the last 5 years. Stylistic has been a vegan for about 11 years now. Outside of DJing, he is an advocate for educating people of color on plant-based diets and veganism.

George Tikkun

Founder, Vegan Kids Cook
Geo D Foods is a young entrepreneur founded business focused on quality vegan products. Our first product, a vegan bacon, is our entry into the market. The founder started this business at 14-years-old and has been working to expand his production and marketing now that he is 15.

Tonia L. Carrier Hicks

Activist & Filmmaker, UnchainedTV
Tonia L. Carrier Hicks (Your Vegan Friend Tonia on YouTube) has been a vegan for over seven years. She lives in Michigan with her husband and cat and works as hairstylist and filmmaker. She has been a contributor with UnchainedTV for four years.

Trilanda Kei Colbert

Founder/CEO, Kei2Health
I am Trilanda Kei Colbert, Founder/CEO of Kei2Health LLC and Certified Integrative Nutrition Coach. I practice a holistic approach to health and wellness - I look at how all areas of your life are connected. I help you understand how the Primary Foods of your life are connected to the Secondary Foods. Primary Foods are careers, relationships, finances (a few of the main stressors in our lives), while Secondary Foods are what we put into our bodies. I received my certification from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition and have been practicing natural healing and prevention for over 20 years. I am focused on providing education to help people live healthier lifestyles! Mission: To empower people and provide ongoing support as they make sustainable changes to improve their overall health and happiness. How did Kei2Health come about? I started the journey 22 years ago, initially for myself. I had high blood pressure, high cholesterol and low potassium. The doctor told me that since these issues run on both sides of your family to just take a pill. I never liked taking any medicine, not even Tylenol. I was determined to figure out what I could do to avoid taking medication. That is when I started looking at what and how I ate to bring natural healing. My background is in Human Resources and Business Management. I worked in the corporate world for about 22 years. In 2018, I planned to take a few months off to de-stress, heal, and spend time with my family. I thought that I would take a little break and get back into it, but I felt like that was not what I was supposed to be doing anymore. I asked myself, what do I always tell people—operate in your passion. What do you dream about? What would you do even if you didn't get paid to do it? I concluded that I really wanted to help people understand the importance of not just what we eat, but how we eat so that we can heal naturally. I received my certification from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition and incorporated Kei2Health in November 2019. My Services: • Individual Coaching Sessions • Group Workshops • Healthy Catering (completely dairy-free, with a wide variety of vegan options) • Vegan Baked Goods • In-Home & Virtual Cooking Classes