GOOD 100: Meet Georges Laraque, the Hockey Player-Turned-Champion for Animal Rights
Georges LaRaque was considered one of the most feared players in the National Hockey League. Today, he’s a spokesperson for PETA and World Vision, owner of two vegan restaurants and Deputy Leader of Canada’s Green Party. Of Haitian decent, LaRaque committed to rebuilding Port-au-Prince’s Grace Children's Hospital after the devastating earthquake.
LaRaque played 13 seasons in the NHL, with the Edmonton Oilers, Phoenix Coyotes, Pittsburgh Penguins, and the Montreal Canadiens, and is now the executive director of the Canadian Hockey League Players’ Association.
In 2010, LaRaque announced his retirement from the NHL to focus on community involvement and humanitarian efforts. His incredible career is chronicled in the autobiography The Story of the NHL’s Unlikeliest Tough Guy, as is the racism he faced in the NHL.
Currently living in Edmonton, LaRaque is also the president of Super-Glide Canada, a synthetic "skate-like-ice" surface for rinks, without the expensive refrigeration and maintenance. He also works as a sport analyst on TV for tvasport in Montreal.
His restaurant, Crudessence, has two locations in Montreal and serves raw vegan food to promote animal welfare as well as healthy eating.
“Nothing is cooked, everything is gluten free and really healthy for you,” LaRaque writes on his blog. “There are always places with imitation meat, popular amongst meat lovers, or people transitioning to a vegan or even a vegetarian diet. But I thought that if I were going to endorse something, I would pick the best, the healthiest restaurant where I know everyone would benefit the most from their experience.”
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