buildOn Dinner Raises $720,000 for Bay Area Youth; Event Honors TMG Partners and SFISD Assistant Superintendent Margaret Chiu

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The 10th Annual buildOn Bay Area Dinner raised a record $720,000 to support buildOn’s afterschool service programs in under-resourced Bay Area high schools, and the construction of primary schools in developing countries across the globe.

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The 10th Annual buildOn Bay Area Dinner, held May 3 at the Westin St. Francis in San Francisco, raised a record $720,000 to support buildOn’s afterschool service programs in under-resourced Bay Area high schools, and the construction of primary schools in developing countries across the globe.

The dinner was hosted by NBC Bay Area News Weekend Anchor, Diane Dwyer, and attended by 500 of the Bay Area’s most prominent philanthropists and business leaders, including Event Chair Lynne Zydowsky; Manuela Testolini, Founder of the In a Perfect World Foundation; and Testolini’s musician husband, Eric Benet.

buildOn presented TMG Partners with the 2013 Honoree Award for its commitment to quality education and for supporting buildOn’s programs at home and abroad. Margaret Chiu, Assistant Superintendent of the San Francisco Unified School District, was presented with the Local Impact Award for her longtime work as a champion for Bay Area Youth. The Chapter Honoree Award was presented to Corinne Lowe, a high school senior at the Sage Ridge School in Reno, Nev., for rallying her peers to raise funds to build three schools internationally – two in Nicaragua and one in Malawi.

During the evening’s program, International Studies Academy high school senior, David “Izzy” Isidoro, shared the story of his transformation, from being involved in a gang to finding a purpose through his buildOn program. The program also previewed buildOn CEO and Founder Jim Ziolkowski’s new book, Walk in Their Shoes: Can One Person Change the World (Simon & Schuster 2013), launching on September 17. The evening closed with a video highlighting the many Bay Area residents who have traveled to participate in buildOn’s school construction program abroad.

"We were thrilled to see so many of our loyal supporters at our 10th Annual buildOn Bay Area Dinner,” said Catarina Schwab, buildOn Vice President of the West Coast. “The guests were greeted by our buildOn students with loud cheers and the energy remained high through the cocktail party, dinner and after party at Michael Mina's Clock Bar. It was our biggest night yet!"

The Dinner Honorary Committee included: Richard A. Carranza, Superintendent San Francisco Unified School District; Kelly Clark, Gold Medal Olympic Snowboarder; George Gascón, San Francisco District Attorney; Ken Goldman, CFO Yahoo; Chris Horner, Olympic Cyclist; Hooman Khalili, Alice Radio; San Francisco Mayor Edwin Lee; Hydra Mendoza, Education Advisor to the Mayor; Tyler Mitchell, Owner of Wilkes Bashford, and Stephanie Mitchell; Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom and Jennifer Siebel Newsom; Hilary Newsom and Geoff Callan; Lori Puccinelli Stern and Peter Stern; the Honorable Bryan Parker, Port Commissioner Oakland; Joanna Rees and John Hamm; and Langston Walker, nine-year NFL veteran.

The Event Committee included: Nelvia Arlisa Bullock; Shannon Margaret Bavaro; Linda Chan; Suzanne Crandall; Camilla Field; Annie Leschin; Kelly McCarthy; Leigh Wasson; and Event Chair, Lynne Zydowsky.

About buildOn: buildOn launched its Afterschool Service Program in the Bay Area in 2001. Since then, buildOn students from San Francisco and Oakland have contributed 140,000 hours of service by tutoring children, feeding the homeless and volunteering at senior citizen homes. Forty Bay Area students a year travel to some of the poorest countries in the planet, including Haiti, Malawi, Mali, Nepal, Nicaragua and Senegal to help build schools. Through buildOn, students from the United States realize their ability to change lives, including their own. Ninety-four percent of buildOn youth not only graduate from high school, but go on to college. For more information, visit http://www.buildon.org.

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Carrie Pena
buildOn
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