Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff announces $17.2 million donation for schools in SF, Oakland

Lyanne Melendez Image
Friday, September 13, 2019
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Six years ago, he took the lead in helping get technology into the classroom. This year, he's done it again, donating to both San Francisco and Oakland schools.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff is just one local business leader helping to build a better Bay Area. Six years ago, he took the lead in helping get technology into the classroom. It's been a game-changer. This year, he's done it again by donating more than $17 million to both San Francisco and Oakland schools.

Benioff has always referred to the money he donates to schools in San Francisco and Oakland as an investment in the future of those two cities.

"Our journey with them has only started," he told a large gathering of students, teachers and Salesforce employees at Presidio Middle School in San Francisco on Thursday. "We are still at the beginning of what we can do."

It's a promise Benioff started in 2013 when he surprised everyone after donating iPads and money to all 12 middle schools in San Francisco.

On Thursday, he assured everyone that the investment over the past seven years is improving outcomes.

"More full-time teacher for math and technology, a surge of kids who are enrolled in STEM and computer science, more young women and more students of color, higher attendance rates, higher math scores," said Benioff.

San Francisco Mayor London Breed added that the money helps level the playing field among all students.

"We're going to need the next generation to not only take over the world in all these amazing positions but we are also going to need you to save our planet," expressed Mayor Breed.

In 2016, that wealth was then shared with Oakland schools.

This year both districts combined will receive more than $17 million - $8.5 million for San Francisco and $8.7 million for Oakland.

"That's some serious cash," said Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, who encouraged other companies to follow Benioff's lead.

"I challenge other companies to do what San Francisco has done and that is to put your money where your mouth is and out your love where your money is," she added.

When you add it all up. Salesforce has donated nearly $70 million, not to mention hours and hours of volunteer work by employees.