SF: Inside The RISE Gala Honoring Joe Lacob, Reed Hastings And More

Joe Lacob, Nicole Curran and Danielle Daly
Joe Lacob, Nicole Curran and Danielle Daly

Photo Credit: Drew Altizer Photography

When you’re accompanied by an NBA championship trophy, it’s hard not to receive plenty of attention. Just ask Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob, whose shiny prize accompanied him to the Full Circle Fund’s RISE gala last week at San Francisco City Hall, where leaders and organizations advancing positive social impact in the community were honored during the annual celebration themed RISE: 15 Years of Partnering For Good.

Lacob and his fiancée Nicole Curran, president of the Warriors Community Foundation, represented the team, which was honored along with Netflix Founder and CEO Reed Hastings, Lyft co-founder and CEO Logan Green, Family Independence Initiative founder Mauricio Lim Miller and San Francisco Symphony President Sakurako Fisher. Lacob posed for selfies with fans and attendees lined up on the steps in the Rotunda to take a photo next to the sparkling trophy.

“Thank you for giving us this award tonight,” Lacob said at the close of his speech. “We really appreciate it–not quite as much as this (the NBA trophy) but we do appreciate it a lot.”

When guests laughed, he added, “I’m being honest.”

Lacob not only turned the team he and Hollywood mogul Peter Guber bought five years ago into winners but did the same for its charitable arm, which was launched in 2012. The Warriors Community Foundation donated more than $1.5 million to 40 Bay Area organizations to support local youth development efforts. Lacob praised Curran,  “who is the love of my life and who has done such an amazing job in such a short period of time in building this foundation from essentially nothing into something that gives away almost $2 million last year,” he said to the attendees.

“We’re not a basketball team, truthfully,” Lacob went on to say. “We view ourselves as an entertainment organization, much more than basketball, and a community organization. That is what we are trying to build… We are just beginning. We intend for this organization to be the best in all of sports–to be able to do more for underprivileged education in sports anywhere.”

You’ll be able to read more about the philanthropic Warriors in the Nov/Dec 2015 issue of Haute Living San Francisco, which Lacob covers.

Also during the R15E Gala, Green spoke about his company’s giving back program called Lyft for Good, which allows any driver to offer ideas. One of the concepts involved delivering meals for Meals on Wheels. Another one centered on the recent floods in Austin, Texas; drivers banded together to do recovery and clean-up work.

“Any driver can come up with a concept; often it involves a non-profit or cause that is close to their heart,” Green said. “We help them pull in other drivers and passengers and make a movement out of it. Last year we did 250 of these events across the country. When I think about the impact that Lyft can have going forward; as we grow and get bigger every year, I think about how the drivers in the community can impact more and more people’s lives.”

The evening kicked off with a reception and retrospective exhibit that showcased 15 years of impactful milestones, followed by the gala, which revealed Full Circle Fund’s vision for the future and included a dinner by McCalls, in the North Light Court. After the program and live auction, guests returned to the Rotunda for dessert service, which included a donut station.

More than 300 people attended the gala, which raised nearly $400,000 to further accelerate Full Circle Fund’s impact in its key issue areas of Education, Economic Opportunity, Environment & Energy, and Health.

RISE event chairs were Vivian Wu, Managing Director of Zuckerberg Education Ventures, and Josh Becker, CEO of Lex Machina and Full Circle Fund Chairman of the Board. Event sponsors include Cooley, Goldman Sachs, Google.org, KPMG, Microsoft, and Pacific Gas & Electric. The Host Committee for RISE includes Michael Anders, Karen and Ellis Alden, Sakurako Fisher, Rob Black, Mark Jacobstein, Kevin Perkins, Alison and Mark Pincus, Susanna Poon, Tim Smith, and Peter and Jocelyn Werner.

Photo Credit: Drew Altizer Photography