Georges Laraque is a 13-year NHL veteran who has played for the Edmonton Oilers, Phoenix Coyotes, Pittsburgh Penguins and Montreal Canadiens. He was known as “The Rock”, acting primarily as an enforcer on these teams. His best-selling biography, The Story of The NHL’s Unlikeliest Tough Guy, goes well beyond the stereotype of the tough guy. It is the story of a true humanitarian, an engaged citizen not only in his immediate community, but on the global stage as well. The son of Haitian immigrants, Laraque campaigned for World Vision to help with Haitian relief and the rebuilding of the Grace Children’s Hospital in Port-au-Prince. Today, Georges is involved in many charities, including the Mira Foundation which provides dogs for disabled individuals and the Team In Training for blood cancer research.
A committed believer in animal rights and a spokesperson for PETA, he became a vegan in 2009 and has, ever since, contributed to the vegetarian movement in Montreal by becoming co-owner of two raw vegan restaurants called Crudessence and Rise Kombucha, a raw, organic, vegan, fairtrade fermented tea beverage company. A conscientious environmentalist, Laraque stepped up in July 2010 to be the deputy leader of the Green Party.
All in all, Georges Laraque is a man of strong convictions. As an avid follower of the Dalai Lama, he believes that: “Just as we should cultivate gentle and peaceful relations with our fellow human beings, we should also extend that same kind of attitude towards the natural environment.”
Since his retirement, Georges has been very active as a speaker. He has been invited to hundreds of events and has spoken on various topics such as sports, motivation, racism, bullying, veganism, business, charities and politics.