2017 HRC SF Bay Area Local Award Winners
The San Francisco Bay Area chapter of Human Rights Campaign is proud to announce the admirable winners of three local awards to be presented at the 33st Annual Gala Dinner at the Westin St. Francis Hotel on Saturday, October 14, 2017.
CORPORATE EQUALITY AWARD
Lyft will receive the HRC Corporate Equality Award for their exceptional commitment to equality for the LGBTQ community. Lyft has been a trailblazing corporate ally to the LGBTQ community, both with its inclusive internal policies for employees and its outspoken executives who have made clear that the company strongly supports pro-equality legislation and policies across the country. Lyft President John Zimmer will accept the HRC Corporate Equality Award on behalf of Lyft at the event on October 14th.
HRC VISIBILITY AWARD
Actor, comedian, and writer, Billy Eichner is a multifaceted force to be reckoned with.
Eichner can currently be seen in a recurring role on the seventh season of Ryan Murphy’s FX anthology series, American Horror Story: Cult. Eichner stars alongside Sarah Paulson and Evan Peters and has received rave reviews for his performance.
Eichner’s critically acclaimed series, Billy on the Street, just wrapped its fifth season on truTV and has garnered over 50 million views online. The show was recently nominated for a Primetime Emmy® in the category of Outstanding Variety Sketch Series. This was the second Primetime Emmy nomination for the series, which was also nominated for Outstanding Short-Format Live-Action Entertainment Program in 2015.
Billy on the Street is a variety sketch series that follows unfiltered and unapologetic comedian Billy Eichner as he hits the streets of New York City. Eichner tests unsuspecting passersby and celebrity guests in a wild variety of games and sketches that satirize our current cultural and political obsessions. Notable guests include Michelle Obama, Tina Fey, David Letterman, Chris Pratt, Julianne Moore, Will Ferrell, Aziz Ansari, Jon Hamm, Lupita Nyong’o, John Oliver, Seth Rogen, James Corden, Stephen Colbert and the Muppets from Sesame Street among many others. Standout games from the recent season include “Immigrant or Real American?” in which a passerby must identify from Eichner’s rapid-fire list of celebrities who were born in the USA and those who immigrated here, “Super Sloppy, Semi-Automatic Double Dare” with Keegan-Michael Key, in which Eichner takes Key on a tour through the United States to see how many guns he can legally acquire before time runs out, and “Escape Margot Robbie’s Moment” with Rachel Dratch. All five seasons of Billy on the Street are now streaming on Hulu.
Eichner is also starring in the third season of Hulu’s critical darling Difficult People, which returned in August. The show revolves around Eichner and Julie Klausner, two best friends living in New York City whose behavior tends to place them in the most hilariously awkward of situations. The show is executive produced by Amy Poehler.
Eichner can be seen in the new Netflix comedy, Friends From College opposite Keegan-Michael Key, Fred Savage and Cobie Smulders. The show follows a group of friends from Harvard entering their forties, grappling with the realities of life and nostalgia for the past.
Furthermore, Eichner recently starred in NBC’s Hairspray Live! alongside a stellar cast including Harvey Fierstein, Ariana Grande, Jennifer Hudson, Kristin Chenoweth, Martin Short, and Derek Hough amongst others.
Eichner’s film credits include the Universal Pictures sequel Neighbors 2: Sorority Uprising with Zac Efron and Seth Rogen and the Sony Pictures animated film adaptation The Angry Birds Movie. Both films were released in May of 2016.
Additionally, Eichner appeared as a series regular on the final two seasons of NBC’s acclaimed Parks & Recreation in his role as “Craig Middlebrooks" and he regularly lends his voice as “Mr. Ambrose,” the librarian who hates books, on FOX’s popular animated comedy Bob’s Burgers.
Upcoming, Eichner is set to star alongside Anna Kendrick, Bill Hader and Shirley MacLaine in Nicole, the story of Santa’s daughter who has to take over the family business.
The actor first became known for his viral online Billy On the Street videos, and as the host and writer of the acclaimed stage show, Creation Nation: A Live Talk Show, which the New York Times called a “late night theatrical phenomenon.” A perennial talk show guest, Eichner has appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Ellen, Late Night with Seth Meyers, The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Late Show with David Letterman, Conan, Watch What Happens Live, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver and The Today Show among others.
A native New Yorker, Eichner attended New York’s prestigious Stuyvesant High School and went on to graduate from Northwestern University.
ALLY FOR EQUALITY AWARD
Tony, Emmy, AFI and Golden Globe Award-winning actor Jeffrey Wright has enjoyed an illustrious career that has spanned the worlds of theatre, film and television.
Wright will soon be seen playing Bernard Lowe, in HBO’s reimagining of Michael Crichton’s 1973 film, WESTWORLD. The TV-series will explore the infamous futuristic theme park where the rich flock to fulfill their wildest fantasies and the perils that ensue when illusions become realities. In addition to that, Wright will also be seen playing Harvard Law professor, Charles Ogletree in HBO’s upcoming CONFIRMATION; a film that chronicles Anita Hill’s sexual harassment testimony in Clarence Thomas’ 1991 Supreme Court hearings. Wright’s recent television appearances include his portrayal of Dr. Valentin Narcisse in HBO's critically acclaimed series BOARDWALK EMPIRE. Wright was nominated for Critics Choice Television Award in the category of "Best Supporting Actor" for his portrayal of Narcisse, as well as a Screen Actors Guild Award in the category of "Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series" on behalf of the show.
On the big screen, Wright can next be seen in two features: Pixar's animated film THE GOOD DINOSAUR, where Wright will voice the role of Poppa Henry and THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART 2, which will be released on November 20, 2015. He will reprise his role as Beetee, the electronics and wiring expert from District 3 and leader amongst the rebellion. Wright previously starred in THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART 2, and THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE.
A gifted theater actor, Wright was most recently on stage as the lead in John Guare's "A Free Man of Color" at Lincoln Center, directed by George C. Wolfe, a frequent collaborator. In 2001 and 2002 respectively, he earned an Obie award and a Tony nomination for his work in the play "Topdog/Underdog." Wright garnered a Tony® Award in 1994 for his portrayal in Tony Kushner's Pulitzer Prize-winning epic "Angels in America," also directed by George C. Wolfe. Wright reprised his Angels role in HBO's 2003 mini-series adaption of the play, earning both a Golden Globe and an Emmy for his groundbreaking performance.
On film, Wright has portrayed a stunning array of icons and iconoclasts. His brilliant portrayal of the renowned and controversial graffiti artist, Jean Michel Basquiat, in the 1996 film BASQUIAT, received widespread praise from critics and earned him an Independent Spirit Award® nomination. On the other end of the spectrum, Wright has taken on roles in the 2006 and 2008 James Bond films, CASINO ROYALE and QUANTUM OF SOLACE and also in 2008, starred as Muddy Waters in CADILLAC RECORDS and as Colin Powell in Oliver Stone's W. In 2005, he co-starred in the award-winning film SYRIANA, and his other credits include Stephen Daldry's EXTREMELY LOUD AND INCREDIBLY CLOSE; Jonathan Demme's remake of THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE; Jim Jarmusch's ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE and BROKEN FLOWERS, earning him another Independent Spirit Award® nomination; Ang Lee's RIDE WITH THE DEVIL; Allen Hughes' political thriller BROKEN CITY; George Clooney's THE IDES OF MARCH; and SHAFT.
In addition to acting, Wright is founded and Vice Chairman of Taia Lion Resources and co-founder and Chairman of Taia Peace Foundation. He is the co-founder of the Ebola Survival Fund and is on the advisory board of the United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF). He also serves on the boards of directors of the Tribeca Film Institute and Resolve. Wright was named by the Government of Sierra Leone as the “Peace by Piece” Ambassador for that country's 2011 50th Anniversary Independence Celebration, and in 2011, Wright was named honorary Paramount Chief of Penguia Chiefdom, Sierra Leone.
Born in Washington, D.C., Wright graduated from Amherst College, receiving a B.A. in political science in 1987 and earned a doctorate of humane letters from his alma mater in 2004. Wright resides in Brooklyn, NY with his family.
CHARLES M. HOLMES COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARD
Linda Scaparotti is a stalwart advocate and strong voice for our community. As a Former HRC Board of Directors member, lifelong LGBTQ activist and attorney for the community she has been a tireless activist in the fight for equality. Linda is an energetic, visible leader for several LGBTQ organizations in the Bay Area including NCLR, Equality California, Horizons Foundation, Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom, Spectrum Center, Our Family Coalition, and Open House.
News & Updates
Get involved as a Table Captain
Table Captains are the backbone of ensuring a successful, well-attended dinner each year.
Learn about being a table captain...
Join The Conversation!
HRC San Francisco Bay on Social Media
Like, Favorite, Retweet, Follow, Double Tap...