But it was the Fund the Future lot—entitled “If Kids Can’t Read, They Can’t Succeed”—that truly moved the room. A group of bidders—including Katie Jackson of Jackson Family Wines Collection, Matt Gallo of Gallo Family Vineyards, Benovia Winery, Hamel Family Wines and Francis Ford Coppola Winery—each donated $100,000. Co-chair Klein of Rodney Strong Vineyards donated another $100,000 and challenged the audience to match it. Many quickly did, resulting in a total of $1,635,000 raised for Sonoma County kids.
By Lot Number 28, with 10 more to go, the auction surpassed the $3-million mark. The donations will benefit 43 charities across Sonoma County, with a concentration on children, health and the environment.