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A High Definition of Compassion:Tech Pioneer & Philanthropist Ady Gil-P1/2      
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Ady Gil. To the world, the name is synonymous with Sea Shepherd’s mighty black boat that valiantly patrolled the oceans to protect the whales from menacing whaling vessels. With its futuristic stealth design and top speeds reaching 50 knots, the Ady Gil was a superhero of the seas masked in the form of a ship. But in Hollywood, Ady Gil evokes other imagery… in high definition.

Mr. Ady Gil is founding partner of American Hi Definition, and one of the most generous animal welfare activists you’ll ever meet. American Hi Definition (AHD) provides state-of-the-art large-screen video projection displays for the entertainment industry. Building the company out of his garage with just US$200 in his pocket and hard work to his name, Ady and his business partner Erez Ram quickly grew AHD into a trusted leader in this niche market. AHD was one of the first companies in Hollywood to offer large-scale video projection, and thus was sought out by big movie productions like True Lies as early as 1992.

Almost two decades later, AHD continues to provide superb multi-media solutions for movies, television shows, and award specials. If you’re watching high-profile events like the Academy Awards, the Grammy’s, and the Emmy’s, you can be sure American Hi Definition is behind the scenes creating these awesome productions. Ady and best friend Kayla take us on a tour of the American Hi Definition facility.

There’s two companies here in the warehouse. American Hi Definition does large screen video projection. We have video projectors, LED walls, screens display that can project on screens up to 70 feet wide.

Then we have Sweetwater Digital here, and we rent broadcast equipment – full packages. Cameras like this, we don’t just rent them as an item, but we do the entire production. So we have everything that we need from mobile television truck, to the equipment, to flypacks, so if you want to make television on location…

Shows like the Academy Awards, Grammys and things like that, you would need equipment like that to be brought into places like the Nokia or the Staples Center or the Kodak Theater because these facilities do not have control rooms and studios, so we turn them into studio for the week.

The trucks are more complicated than the studios, because trucks need to be much more flexible in what they can do. In a studio you may have 5, 6, 7 cameras, and TV shows like the Academy Awards, Grammy’s may have 20 cameras.

Big music shows can have 20 groups, so there’s much more audio in it. There’s much more telecommunication between stage manager. Live shows are more difficult than studio shows. That’s why the trucks need to be so much more powerful and more flexible than the permanent installation.

Professionalism and advanced technology define AHD and Digital Productions Incorporated as the market leaders in the multi-media industry. Now this all sounds pretty impressive, however Ady Gil, the visionary and highly successful entrepreneur, won our admiration for a different reason. As a vegetarian and animal rights advocate, Ady focuses much of his time and attention on something closer to his heart. We visit Ady to find out more.

Hi, we’re here are Ady Gil’s house. He is a renowned philanthropist, he supports a number of animal welfare organizations, and he is a vegan. So let’s go and meet him.

Hi, Ady.

Hi, how are you?

So nice to meet you.

Good, good, good, good. Come on in. This is Kayla.

This is Kayla?

Wow, you have a nice house!

Thank you. (Beautiful!) Kayla, say “Hi.”

Hi, Kayla!

Say “Hi,” Kayla.

Hi, Kayla! Hey!

Who’s coming to see you, good girl?

Oh, she’s so cute! She’s so loving! You’re so loving!

Give five.

Give five, give five.

Good girl!

You’re a good girl!

Come on in! You want to meet my birds?

Oh, you have birds!

Yeah, I rescued these birds. This is Baby, and this is Peek-a-boo. Peek-a-boo! Peek-a-boo!

An animal lover since childhood, Ady adopted vegetarianism early on when he connected the food on his plate to the precious life in the field. Compassion was his calling.

That’s right, that’s right. That was my reason. And I know for other people, the reason to become vegetarian or vegan is because of health reasons. My body is healthier now because of that. But that for me personally, it wasn’t the reason. I made a connection. For me, chicken legs – chicken. Beef, not beef – cow. Veal - how they’d call it - it’s a baby cow.

It is so difficult to make the connection because it’s so well packaged, to create the disconnect. It’s well thought. That’s what they want to do. They want to sell you something that no matter what you do, you will be disconnected from where it came from. That is what it is. So when I look now at a piece of steak, I consciously think about the beautiful eyes of the cow. Think about it every time. Every person, look at the steak, look at the face of a cow. Steak – face of a cow – steak this – do like this.

Do it a couple of times, you will see that the steak will at some point, will become a cow. Not beef and not something red and soft on a Styrofoam plate covered with a plastic wrapper. If you make that connection, you say, “I’m now killing or eating an animal.” That’s what it is.

I will tell you a story. I was feeding Kayla canned food that has meat in it, right? And since I don’t have meat in the house, there was a company Christmas party, and there was a lot of leftover meat. And I said, “I am going to bring some home and give Kayla steaks and chicken and all that stuff.” So I had a bag and I brought it home. And I opened it up and I say, “She is a dog, she is going to eat it.” I gave it to her on a plate and she didn’t touch it. And it’s not that I was teaching her, telling her “No,” you know? So I said, “You know what? Maybe she just made a decision that meat is not on her diet.”

And she does not eat meat. You can put a steak, you can put a banana, and you can put an apple, and it is going to go in this order – she is going to eat the apple first, the banana second, and she is not going to touch the meat at all. She doesn’t touch meat by choice, even if it is offered to her.

In a videoconference with our Association members in London, United Kingdom on June 13, 2008, Supreme Master Ching Hai explained how the noble qualities of animals naturally lead them to a plant-based diet:

Meat eating is not fit for anyone, not even animals. But sometimes they don’t have choice, they have to do it.

Even some of the birds, they’re supposed to eat some other smaller insects or something, or smaller fish or smaller birds; when I feed them vegetarian, they don’t go there to eat fish or other, anymore. They continue to come to my house to eat vegetarian. Even my dogs, they refuse meat. They don’t eat meat anymore after they’ve been with me and vegetarian. They know vegetarian is good. They don’t eat meat.

Kayla is a vegetarian by choice, because she decided on her own that she wants to be vegetarian. I did not know that actually you can get canned food [for dogs] and it’s all vegetarian. And Kayla loves her dinner.

Is that her favorite dish?

Yes… No! Apples! (Apples are?) Apples, because Kayla loves apples more… and bananas.

She likes fruits more than this. (Yeah, yeah.) You’re like a fruitarian!

She is. Even her dried food is vegetarian, and she likes it too. See? (Look at that.) This is also, see? And it’s good. Kayla has no problem. She is almost nine years old, and she is very healthy and she is very strong and she is very fast, and she acts like she is two.

She does look very healthy.

Okay so now we are in your kitchen. What do you eat, what do you have in your refrigerator?

Let’s go find out. Okay, so what do we have in the refrigerator, Kayla? Let’s see.

So this shelf used to have a lot of milk on it, because cereal in the morning and cappuccino all that stuff. So slowly the milk went away and more of the other products like soy milk and soy chocolate and Rice Dream and pineapple juice and orange juice. We’ve got that. Since I am Israeli, you can have hummus, right? Garbanzo beans. (Oh, I love this hummus!) This is very, very good.

Yeah, it’s very good.

Very good, right. You can even replace the mayonnaise, which actually tastes better! (Yeah, I agree.) It does, doesn’t it? Yes, it’s good. (Vegan.) Yes. What else? Then we have Kayla’s favorite food, we have apples for Kayla. (This is amazing, that she loves apples.) She loves apples. Here’s an apple for Kayla. (Organic apples.) Organic apples, yeah. So Kayla loves apples, right.

Who’s a good girl. You’re the good girl. Look at her face! (Yeah.)

She’s just totally focused on that apple.

That face is just… Ady, look at her face, it’s so cute.

That’s like the treat of the day for her.

She loves apple. Yes. We take the seeds out. She is very, very interested in the apple.

She looks like she is!

Okay, now let’s go there, let’s see what a good girl does. Come here. Come here, go, go, go. Sit. Here you go, 1-2-3, you ready? 1-2-3 catch. Good girl! And one more. You ready? Okay. Sit, good girl. Good girl. 1-2-3 catch. Good girl!

In 2010, the L.A. Veg Society was founded to promote a kinder, more humane way of living, and to provide resources for vegan outreach. As someone who frequently opens his doors to host events benefiting animal welfare causes, Ady graciously held the society’s first fundraiser in his gorgeous hilltop home.

Prabhat [Gautam] came to me and said, “Ady I’d like to start this Veg Society in Los Angeles.” I thought it was a good idea to get people first to understand what being a vegetarian or vegan is all about, and you can actually live a normal lifestyle and not hurt anybody else. And I said, “If we can start something good, we’ll start something good.”

And if we can start it here at my house and we can have a launch party and we can bring all the friends and the people that actually maybe are not vegetarian yet so they can learn a little bit about it, and we can give them vegetarian food and they can enjoy the party. And they can come out of here and say, “You know what? It was a great party. We did not kill any animal for that, so maybe we can live good healthy life without doing it.”

So hopefully more people are going to know about it, more people are going to become vegetarian, vegan; more animals are going to live; less factory farming; less foie gras; less veal; less torturing; less killing of dolphins; and whatever, and hopefully we’ll survive here on this planet.

Visit Ady Gil online at www.AdyGil.com
The Ady Gil World Conservation charity can be found at www.AGWC501.org
For more info about American Hi Definition, please visit www.Hi-Def.com

Thank you, big-hearted viewers, for your company today on Vegetarian Elite. Please join us again next week on Saturday, May 21, as we learn more about the special relationship Ady shares with his beloved companion Kayla, and what inspires his numerous philanthropic endeavors. Coming up next is Between Master and Disciples, here on Supreme Master Television. May the friendship of animals kindle your heart with love and laughter.
I support most animal welfare and animal right organizations. I hear a lot of good things about PCRM (Physicians for Responsible Medicine), and I am here to support them. There is so much misery and pain and suffering in this world and anything that we can do in order to prevent that, that’s what we should do. So if there are organizations like PCRM and others that do that, that help animals, I support them.

Ady Gil. To the world, the name is synonymous with Sea Shepherd’s mighty black boat that valiantly patrolled the oceans to protect the whales from menacing whaling vessels. With its futuristic stealth design and top speeds reaching 50 knots, the Ady Gil was a superhero of the seas masked in the form of a ship. But in Hollywood, Ady Gil evokes other imagery… in high definition.

Mr. Ady Gil is founding partner of American Hi Definition, the production company behind practically every major awards show televised. He is also one of the most generous animal welfare activists you’ll ever meet. Today on Vegetarian Elite, we continue with the second part of our program on the extraordinary Ady Gil…and his adorable 9-year-old vegan partner! Now who could this be?

So we are here with your wonderful dog Kayla. Hey Kayla, come here. Kayla, say “Hi.” Say “Hi” to camera. Hi, Kayla. Oh, you’re so pretty! So how did you meet her?

Actually Kayla came to me as a foster dog. She was rescued. She was 15 minutes from being euthanized at the shelter.

So then you adopted her?

Then I adopted her. We adopted each other. (Exactly.) That’s right, yes. And we are partners in life. Yes, we give each other respect.

Known internationally for his animal rights advocacy, Ady’s journey into activism began with a turkey he adopted and named “Shalom.” He explains, “Shalom means ‘peace’ and helping animals has become my peace.”

So it all started in 1999. My girlfriend at the time, which she was a vegetarian, said to me that instead of eating a turkey for Thanksgiving, there’s a program that I can adopt a turkey for Thanksgiving. You send $20 to Farm Sanctuary and it’s a symbolic thing, and you will adopt a turkey and they going to name the turkey after you and this turkey is saved, and that’s what it’s going to be all about. I said, “Well $20 is not much, why wouldn’t I do this thing?”

So then I was aware that there are a lot of animals that actually need some help in this world, because I started looking at Farm Sanctuary and what they do. Then I was watching a TV on Animal Planet, I think it was a program for ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) about dog abuse in New York City, and I said, “These guys are doing a good job.”

They’re taking dogs which are being mistreated, and they’re taking them into their facility and treating them and all that, so I start supporting the ASPCA in New York. And then I start supporting the SPCALA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles), and they had a telethon and Kayla and I supported that; we were on television. And then other organizations that I’ve seen doing really good work.

That going into the year 2007, when I was just invited to a gala in Santa Monica. I didn’t even know what it was all about, and it was a fundraising for Sea Shepherd. I thought at the time that it’s a good organization with direct action, and they really go out there to save the whales, and I was touched by it. And I bought in the auction a little electric car which I still have; that was in 2007.

Later on, when I was approached to help them with the purchasing another vessel, because they said that with another boat they could stop whaling, I thought, “Stopping whaling just by buying another boat would not be a bad idea.” They suggested to get Earthrace and getting it into their fleet, so I gave them a million dollars to do that. And from there, Earthrace got painted black, my name went on it, went down to Antarctica, and made headlines by having a collision with the security ship of the whalers.

And that’s what made me, my name actually, be famous and known around the world because of that incident. So that opened me up to a lot of other things. Now I find myself so involved with this, with everything, that I don’t even know sometimes where to go. But I try to touch every animal that comes across my path. Because as they say, even if you save a little bird, if you find an injured bird in the yard, it doesn’t mean anything to the world, but it means the world to the animal.

In 2010, Ady founded the Ady Gil World Conservation Foundation (AGWC). To date, it has assisted in a number of projects to safeguard the wellbeing of animals, from dogs to whales. AGWC is unique in that there are no administrative costs and all donations go straight to charitable causes. In some cases, Ady has even matched donations, dollar for dollar.

So I knew that I was going to be selling my company or going into a merger and acquisition in year 2010, so I decided that it would be good to create some sort of a foundation prior to that so we have a place to put some or a good portion of the proceeds that came from the sale of the company into my own private foundation. A dog can be found in the street and somebody takes it to the hospital and can call me up and I can pay for surgery since it’s my own foundation.

I am helping other organizations like Farm Sanctuary and HSUS (Humane Society of the United States) and others through my foundation and money that I put in it, but I’m also capable of doing direct action. I am talking to animal hospitals here in Los Angeles. So if a dog goes there and needs some healthcare and nobody has the money to pay for it, and I can help, and I do it.

Ady explains how even simple gestures like offering free DVDs of the “Earthlings” documentary can go a long way.

When I went to Japan to Taiji, I was interviewed by a special Coast Guard investigator, and he was a very, very respectable man. I’m giving him a copy of ‘Earthlings.” And here is a guy who is eating meat and he’s a guy who may be protecting fishermen or whatever. He took it, and he watched it. Two weeks later, I’m getting an email from this Coast Guard investigator, who’s a high rank Coast Guard, said, “Ady, I’m not touching meat anymore!” I said, “Okay, maybe I didn’t save dolphins in my trip, but I turned one person, or I gave one person, one little baby step.”

Well, that was worth it, because he may tell his friends, and these people may watch “Earthlings,” or whatever, and there will be less cows being killed because the Japanese Coast Guard is not eating cows any more. So I think that every activist, or anybody who cares about animals that this movie made a change in their life, should have 10 DVDs in their car. They should carry these DVDs with them.

So wherever you go you distribute the movie. (That’s right.) You try to, in all ways, inspire people around you.

Exactly, that’s what I do. I buy them in in 100 pieces at a time, and I just give them for free.

Whether it’s activism through online social media…

My Facebook is actually pretty sad because there’s a lot of what I see here on a daily basis, like suffering of animals and all that stuff. Protests, bears, seal hunts. “Stop the largest seal slaughter.” “The Cove” director giving the videos of “The Cove.”

Or taking important calls at work…

Ady, line 2. Ady, line 2.

I want to do a continuation of the story, the raid that we did on the puppy mill. That was last week. We saved 130 dogs.

Ady remains focused and dedicated on improving the lives of our animal co-inhabitants in any way he can. During our visit to the offices of American Hi Definition, Ady a story of a recent animal rescue operation.

A few weeks ago we got a tip on a puppy mill in Tennessee. We collected evidence, we had an undercover investigation – as you can see in this video here. Last week we finally got our search warrant and we had a crew. We went to Tennessee. We got there in the middle of the afternoon at about 3 o’clock. We had about 14 people with the sheriffs. We had HazMat (hazardous materials team) and secured the area. The District Attorney was there with us.

We did not know how many dogs actually were in the puppy mill. We thought between 100 to 200. As we walked in, we found horrific conditions, exactly how the informer told us. There were dogs living there on feces. It was unbelievable. They had disease, skin disease, they were never been bathed, they were never been fed correctly, they were dehydrated. It was terrible. I’ve never seen anything like it. At first we saved the dogs outside which were in cages. We were not allowed in the house because the ammonia level was so high we had to have HazMat go and clear the house and ventilate it.

It was not suitable for anybody to live in this house under this condition, and she had dogs and she was living there herself. After the air was cleared, we saved another 50 dogs from inside the house. We took all these dogs, put them on trailers, and took them to Nashville where the city [government] gave us a barn and then we set up a temporary shelter. We had medical attention, we had people cleaning them up, we vaccinated all the dogs. And then we were waiting for a hearing on Tuesday to see whether we’re going to get custody of the dogs and yesterday we did.

So now we have these 130 dogs and we’re going to find them good homes. What you see here is now the shelter, the temporary one that we set up. You see these dogs being washed, you see their teeth being checked, you see they’re going on a scale. There are thousands of these puppy mills. And the reason for that is greed, because these people are making money out of these dogs.

And the other thing is that we as people like designer dogs, and we don’t go to the shelter because we think that sheltered dogs are not as cool or as pretty and whatever. This dog is a shelter dog. I rescued her when she was 11 months old, and she’s just as great as any dog that would come from a puppy mill or from a breeder. Right, Kayla? Yes, because you’re my baby girl.

In case you are wondering, no cows were harmed in the making of Ady’s couches. They are all fitted with a high-quality synthetic that looks and feels like leather, minus the cruelty.

When I saw you, you told me, “I have a mission.” You feel like you have a mission, certainly you have a mission.

I want take all the fruits that I got out of my work and put it toward helping animals if I can. There is no reason for me to finish my life with money in the bank, so what I want to do is I want to give everything that I have in helping animals – there are animal rights, animal welfare, and make sure that if I can touch them, and I can help them, that would be my mission.

I cannot save the planet; but what it is that I can do is reduce pain and suffering. If I can pay for surgery for a dog, if I can help legislation to reduce suffering for farm animals, if I can reduce the killing of whales and dolphins and other animals, if I can help with the animals that are being tested in laboratories – all that is going to be good. I don’t believe in doing to somebody else what I don’t want done to me. I want to see the next day. So does every animal – they all want to wake up the next morning, right? So my mission is if I can help more animals wake up the next morning, there it is.

How would you like to be remembered?

I’d like to be remembered as somebody who had a huge compassion toward the world and the animals. Somebody who actually took action to do this thing; somebody who was not selfish, and gave to the one that needed, and tried to make this planet a better place for whoever lives on this planet. I hope that the animals on this planet that cannot speak will remember that I was here and helped them.

Our sincerest gratitude, Mr. Ady Gil, for your devotion to our precious animal co-inhabitants. May your shining example lead the world into an era of love and kindness where all sentient life is treasured.

Visit Ady Gil online at www.AdyGil.com
The Ady Gil World Conservation charity can be found at www.AGWC501.org
For more info about American Hi Definition, please visit www.Hi-Def.com

Thank you gentle viewers for joining us today on Vegetarian Elite. Coming up next is Between Master and Disciples. May joy and happiness meet you with every noble step you take in life.



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