The 28th Annual Guardsmen Celebrity Dinner and Sports Auction benefiting The Guardsmen and the Giants
Community Fund was held this past Thursday, February 11th at The Ritz-Carlton for nearly 400 guests and
Emceed by 95.7 The Game’s Damon Bruce, we welcomed an A-list cast of celebrities including: Mayors Ed
Lee and Willie Brown Jr.; San Francisco Giants Bruce Bochy, Sergio Romo, Javier Lopez, George Kontos,
Hunter Strickland, Chris Heston and greats Dave Dravecky, Orlando Cepeda, Vida Blue, and Tito Fuentes.
Additionally, we hosted several other local celebrities including Barry Sims, Bob Lee, Zack Follett, Donald
Strickland, America’s Miss California Erica Abke, Franco Finn and Renel Brooks-Moon.
VIP guests and celebrities mingled before dinner at a reception in the Ritz’s courtyard and as the Giants
players and staff arrived, it was a clear reminder that Spring Training was imminent. Guests then made their
way down to the Silent Auction outside the main ballroom which featured memorabilia celebrating the Forty-
Niner and Giants dynasties as well as several items featuring the Golden State Warriors 2015 Championship
and their historic opening to the 2016 Campaign.
The Warriors were kind enough to bring their 2016 Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy – chaperoned by 2 of the Warriors’ Dancers – and guests had the opportunity to be photographed with the prize of the NBA Finals.
Damon Bruce opened the dinner program with introductions of the celebrities in attendance and a special thank you to Gold
Sponsor BTIG and Silver Sponsors BlackRock, Kingsford Capital, and The Bay Club Company. Immediately
after the introductions Damon welcomed Giants Manager Bruce Bochy and pitchers Javier Lopez and Sergio
Romo to the stage for a Q&A. As usual, Sergio Romo’s impressive beard and mohawk were an ice- breaking
topic, but quickly moved into some questions regarding the Giants newly bolstered roster and the skipper’s
approach to Spring Training as he integrates new talent into the roster and positions the squad for another
World Series run.
The Live Auction commenced after the panel discussion and dinner service and featured many tremendous lots
from Bay Area experiences and, international travel packages to loaded outdoor kitchen options
and BBQ upgrades. Auctioneer Keith McLane kept the auction moving and the energy was high with an assist
from Warriors Hype Man Franco Finn.
Halfway through the Live Auction lots, we were joined by special guest Ebony Moody, the current Boys
and Girls Club and Camp Mendocino Youth of the Year. Ebony has been attending Camp Mendocino for four
years on a Guardsmen scholarship as a foster youth. She first arrived at Camp Mendocino as a camper, and
then participated in our Leaders in Training program for the next three years. Ebony has also actively
participated in the Camp2College year round program for the past three years. She was named Camp
Mendocino¹s 2016 Youth of the Year due to her outstanding leadership and moral fiber. Being named BGCSFs
Citywide Youth of the Year only further validated her impressive resilience and determination that has helped
her overcome challenges that would have crippled most young adults. Thanks to Camp Mendocino, Ebony said
she is automatically set up for success by being connected with caring and supportive mentors.
The Live Auction resumed after Ebony’s speech with “The Pledge,” where guests have an opportunity to
donate directly to The Guardsmen’s mission and the outpouring of support was tremendous raising
over $60,000 in just a matter of minutes.
Overall the event raised nearly $500k, which is a record high for an event produced by The Guardsmen. It was
a great night for at-risk Bay Area youth.
None of this would have taken place without the hard work of event chairs Mike Hall, Derick Brown, Brian Deer and Joe Rehrmann as well as a dedicated committee of volunteers who helped in all phases of planning and day-of execution. The Guardsmen would like to thank Giants Community Fund Executive Director Sue Petersen and her team who helped us create a record breaking event.
On behalf of The Guardsmen and the Giants Community Fund, we thank the community for all the support!