NEW YORK (MainStreet) - Happy vegetarian month! Now let’s make some money.
For plenty of people Ron Swanson and Don Draper still cut the perfect image of a successful businessman: arm draped over a steakhouse booth with a drink in hand waiting for the reddest piece of meat the kitchen can produce while he cuts deals over a bacon salad, hold the lettuce. A monosyllabic first name is optional, of course, but preferred.
Well that was then and this is now, and meat? Turns out that’s completely optional to a baller lifestyle. Tesla's Elon Musk used to be an herbivore, before relatedly switching his eating habits. But some execs are hooked on making their green while eating it too. Here's a list with some unexpected names.
Michael Eisner – Former CEO, Walt Disney Corporation
Stand up and take a look around. Whether you’re in the office, home or walking down the street reading this on an iPhone, there’s a pretty good chance that something in your line of sight belongs to the Disney Corporation. Its holdings range from Marvel Comics and Star Wars to ABC and ESPN, bringing fans of Sports Center and Cinderella alike all thanks to The Mouse…
And one hard-core vegetarian CEO. According to Forbes, the former CEO of the Walt Disney Company is worth a cool $ 1billion, and ever since a heart-bypass in 1994 has followed a strict no-fat vegetarian diet. Thanks to aggressive lobbying, Disney’s copyrights will probably last forever. Thanks to his eating habits, the man behind The Mouse probably will too.
Steve Jobs – Former CEO, Apple Computers
In 1984, Steve Jobs reinvented computers, giving consumers their first graphical operating system. For anyone too young to remember the dark days of DOS, imagine having to remember a case-sensitive password for every single function on your computer. Jobs delivered us from that.
Then in the late '90s, he stepped back up to the plate and did it all again, revolutionizing in less than a decade our very concept of the desktop computer, music players and the telephone. He also personally slew the floppy disk.
How did he do it all? Probably, because this vegan wasn’t spending his afternoons in a food coma.
Bill Clinton – 43rd President of the United States
Running a company and reinventing technology not enough for you? It turns out vegetarians can rule the world. Just ask two-term President Bill Clinton.
Millennials like to think Barack Obama has the lock on presidential cool, but long before he was playing basketball with the Secret Service, Clinton took the stage with his saxophone and wowed the nation. Although his love of the occasional Big Mac became a punchline in the '90s that never slowed him down, but these days he’s given the burgers up. In 2010 the former commander-in-chief switched to a strictly vegetarian diet.
Fit, trim and sharp as ever, as the potential First Gentleman in-waiting the only question is whether meat will disappear from the White House menu in 2017.
Mukesh Ambani – Chairman, Reliance Industries
Sometimes raw numbers can do the talking for you, such as in the case of Reliance Industry’s Mukesh Ambani and his $20.8 billion. That’s enough money to buy just about anything, including many small nations, several times over, but you know what he’s not buying? Raw meat.
The CEO of India’s second most valuable company is a devout vegetarian. Coming from India that’s less of a challenge than it is in the United States. With a deep history of vegetarianism and veganism, India’s vegetable food culture is so astoundingly good that it earned praise from even celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain.
Helping to grow one of the world’s fastest developing economies is no small feat, so perhaps there’s something to Delhi’s curried lentils after all.
Steve Wynn – Casino Owner and Hotelier
Does lettuce bring luck? Just ask Steve Wynn, casino owner and founder of Wynn Resorts. At $2.7 billion his answer would probably be a resounding yes, and there’s really no arguing with success.
Although some rumors have circulated that Wynn may have fallen off the wagon, he’s been a well-known vegetarian for years. It’s tough to argue that losing meat makes you lose your edge when someone like Wynn comes along. After all, there’s no place tougher to make it than the Las Vegas Strip, but Wynn’s managed to score huge while bellying up to the salad bar.
So don’t get any ideas. Just because he prefers lettuce to lobster doesn’t mean that Wynn’s casinos are going to take it easy on you. After all, the house always wins, whether or not it prefers salad dressing to steak sauce.