Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, will be honored at the annual GLAAD gala for his work in opposing anti-LGBT legislation around the country. The award he is to be given is named after Ric Weiland, an early employee of Microsoft who was active in the AIDS and LGBT movements.
Benioff was an organizer in a $60 million boycott against the state of Indiana after governor Mike Pence signed a “religious freedom” bill that had the potential to allow anti-LGBT discrimination. Using a large investment, Benioff pressured Pence to change the bill’s language to protect LGBT communities. Benioff was also a leader in pressuring Georgia governor Nathan Deal to veto a similar bill.
Sarah Kate Ellis, the President and CEO of GLAAD, explained that Benioff “is at the forefront of the corporate movement to stop discriminatory and anti-LGBT bills across the country and his commitment to fairness and equality is steadfast.”