irish president higgins joins council in celebrating benioff, feeney
Salesforce Chairman and CEO Marc Benioff and Duty Free Shoppers Group Founder Chuck Feeney were the guests of honor at the Bay Area Council’s 70th Anniversary Annual Dinner and 2015 Bay Area Business Hall of Fame gathering on Wednesday (Oct. 28) at The Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco. President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins attended and delivered stirring remarks celebrating both Benioff and Feeney for their heroic philanthropic work and immense business accomplishments. Feeney is venerated in Ireland for his significant role in the peace process and his vast contributions to building the country’s higher education system.
President Higgins congratulated the Council on its 70th anniversary, praised the Council for its “generous spirit of community,” and remarked on the unique mission of the Council in convening business and civic leaders to improve the region’s quality of life. The President and Benioff both spoke passionately about the importance of the business community working to solve our social problems. To hear their full remarks, visit the links below.
The 800 CEOs and other top business and civic leaders in attendance, including state Controller Betty Yee and University of California President Janet Napolitano, were greeted with a warm welcome from former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown and a video message from U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein. Later, Virgin America CEO David Cush ended his two-year term as Council Chair by handing the gavel to TMG Partners Chairman and CEO Michael Covarrubias. Council President and CEO Jim Wunderman praised Cush for his leadership, and Covarrubias in taking the reins set a strong tone of action in dealing with the Bay Area’s growing crisis in housing and transportation, among other issues.
Hall of Fame Chair Gary Rogers presided over an inspiring and moving ceremony to induct Benioff and Feeney into the 2015 Hall of Fame class. UCSF Chancellor Sam Hawgood introduced Benioff while QB3 Director and 2011 Hall of Fame inductee Regis Kelly introduced Feeney. Our thanks to all our event sponsors, including Premier Sponsors Kaiser Permanente and Salesforce; Diamond Sponsors AT&T, Bank of America, PG&E, TMG Partners, Union Bank and Virgin America; and Platinum Sponsors Dignity Health, Genentech, General Atlantic, Hanson Bridgett, Lennar Urban, Sutter Health, UCSF, UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals, UPS and Wells Fargo.
It’s not too early to start thinking about the 2016 Annual Dinner and Bay Area Business Hall of Fame. To become Presenting Sponsor, contact Vice President Rufus Jeffris.