Chris O’Donnell and SF 49ers Make Appearance at REDF Gala

Chris and Caroline O'Donnell Photo:
Chris and Caroline O’Donnell Photo:

REDF (Roberts Enterprise Development Fund) held its 5th annual fundraising benefit at the historic Warfield Theatre on September 18.

The San Francisco-based charity supports out-of-work individuals with integration into society by helping to secure lasting employment opportunities.

This year’s celebration brought the likes of supporter and board member, actor Chris O’Donnell, former pro football players and former member of the San Francisco 49ers Ronnie Lott, Harris Barton, Keena Turner, Steven Bono, Chet Hewitt (President and CEO of Sierra Health Foundation) and many others.

Harris Barton, Patrick Carroll, Ronnie Lott Photo:
Harris Barton, Patrick Carroll, Ronnie LottPhoto:

To close out the evening’s festivities, The Black Crowes delivered an exclusive performance that left the crowd wanting more.

REDF is the brainchild of George R. Roberts who founded the philanthropic endeavor in 1997. Roberts felt compelled to fight a strong battle against the persistent and ever growing issue of joblessness in America.

Roberts also surprised patrons that evening with his gift of a dollar-for-dollar match for every donation made that evening by texting a pledge code through a mobile devices.

George R. Roberts and Ronnie LottPhoto:
George R. Roberts and Ronnie Lott

For 16 years REDF has been successfully positioning people back into the job market and assisting them in building the skills necessary to fend for themselves; but most importantly, building their confidence in knowing that each of them has something valid to contribute back to society and can aspire towards achieving any goal or dream they choose.

Patrick Carroll was one of the fortunate beneficiaries of the marvelous services that REDF provides and through his hard work became the recipient of the 2013 Stuart G. Moldaw Step-Up Award. This prestigious award is presented annually to honor those who have conquered tremendous challenges in life. After receiving the award and delivering a heart-felt speech, the crowd instantly rose their feet giving Patrick a standing ovation.

Beverly Sanders and Patrick Carroll Photo:
Beverly Sanders and Patrick Carroll Photo:

After serving 28 years in prison, Patrick found himself at a loss as to what course of action to take in order to successfully adjust back into society. Due to the assistance of REDF’s portfolio partner, Chrysalis Enterprises, Patrick was able to secure momentary work as a desk clerk, which he excelled at and was offered a permanent position and now manages his own building.

REDF’s mission: “Imagine fewer homeless people, less crime, fewer sirens at night, a cleaner city, people earning and learning all comes down to one simple word – jobs.”  They are truly at the forefront of making this a reality.

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