Marine Mammal Center Gala – San Francisco

Guest Blogger, Jeff Boehm, Executive Director, Marine Mammal Center

On Friday night, last week, some 350 people came together at the San Francisco Ferry Building to celebrate The Marine Mammal Center, to build new relationships and strengthen existing ones, and to raise money! Oh, and to have a fair amount of well-deserved fun!

With presentations by Washed Ashore artist, Angela Haseltine Pozzi, and Melissa on her team, and our own Dr. Frances Gulland in the VIP reception, inspiring videos, a heartfelt and moving speech by youth volunteer-turned adult, David Krucik and the dynamic auctioneering of the education department’s Doreen Gurrola and Biz Stone…we hit those goals, and made some Gala history for ourselves in the process!

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Consider these accomplishments and highlights… We are so thankful to Hewlett Packard, our presenting sponsor, for their tremendous sponsorship of the event—the highest we’ve received yet! For the first time in one of our fund-a-need auctions we received a $10,000 gift! And, this was from an individual who is new to our community! We invited in new co-hosts, Biz and Livia Stone, and through them gained access to a wide array of new friends and supporters. All the while, we enjoyed tremendous food, the beautiful music of the EOS ensemble, and one another’s company.

So many people make events like this a success: a board level committee, our many sponsors and in-kind contributors, the legion of volunteers and staff that lent their smarts, muscle and time to the event, the quality partners who manage the venue (gorgeous and fitting, eh?) and the guests who come to show their support! Central in the planning, was our own Kate Harle, who deserves kudos-a-plenty for the large and daunting task she took on and the event she so well delivered with professionalism and great grace. Thank you, Kate!

Oh, and the tally on raising money to help deliver an enhanced whale bus program to 5,000 school kids in under-served communities…you ask? We met our goal of 60K, and we met the total fund-raising goal of the event (we’re still tallying the final number; it may be more!)