Take a look inside the gala Marc Benioff hosted for USC, where the Red Hot Chili Peppers performed, James Corden emceed, and billionaires dined with Ashton Kutcher

Billionaire Salesforce co-CEO Marc Benioff and actor and investor Ashton Kutcher pose for a photo at the 4th Rebels With A Cause Gala on October 24.

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Billionaire Salesforce co-CEO Marc Benioff and actor and investor Ashton Kutcher pose for a photo at the 4th Rebels With A Cause Gala on October 24.
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Steve Cohn / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC
  • Marc Benioff hosted the fourth Rebels With A Cause Gala at The Water Garden in Santa Monica on Thursday, a representative for USC told Business Insider.
  • At the last Rebels With A Cause Gala in 2016, Benioff’s friend and former boss Larry Ellison made a $200 million donation to USC; at this year’s gala, he was honored for the donation.
  • The event raised over $12 million for the Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Marc and Lynne Benioff know how to throw a party.

The billionaire couple hosted the fourth annual Rebels With a Cause Gala on Thursday in a Santa Monica office park. The event benefited research at USC’s Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine. Ellison – a close friend and former mentor of Benioff’s – was there alongside Ashton Kutcher and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Keep reading to take a look inside the event, which is held every third year and always benefits cancer research.


The Gala was held in the Los Angeles area in Santa Monica, California …

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Santa Monica, California.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

… in the courtyard of an office park called The Water Garden.

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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

A gated entrance flanked by security guards kept onlookers from wandering inside.

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Rebels With A Cause Gala.
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AOO Events

The glass tables were decorated with silver accessories and white flowers; the event was designed by AOO Events.

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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

Women also walked the event wearing lampshades.

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“Lamp Ladies” at the 4th Rebels With A Cause Gala.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

Marc and Lynne Benioff hosted.

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Lynne Benioff and Marc Benioff.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

Guests included Ashton Kutcher and USC research Dr. David Agus’ children …

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Ashton Kutcher (center) poses with the children of USC researcher Dr. David Agus, Miles and Sydney Agus.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

… original Fab 5 member Jai Rodriguez …

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Jai Rodriguez.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

… Japanese musician Yoshiki Hayashi …

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Yoshiki Hayashi
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

… Barry Manilow and Lorna Luft …

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Barry Manilow and Lorna Luft
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

… and Canadian musician David Foster and his daughter, 90210 star Sara Foster.

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Sara Foster and David Foster.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

The elder Foster performed at the event …

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David Foster performs at Rebels With A Cause.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

… as did the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

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The Red Hot Chili Peppers perform.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

James Corden was the gala’s emcee.

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James Corden
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

The 350 guests were served dinner …

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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

… and signature cocktails called “Love” and “Hope,” inspired by the cancer research the event was planned to fund.

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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

A representative of USC told Business Insider the event’s 350 guests paid between $1,000 for a single ticket and $100,000 for a table to attend.

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AOO Events

At this year’s gala, Ellison was honored for the $200 million donation he made to USC at the last Rebels With A Cause Gala in 2016. He received a standing ovation.

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Dr. David Agus presents Rebels With A Cause Award to Larry Ellison.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

“[He’s] one of the most amazing people I’ve ever met,” Agus said of Ellison while presenting the award. “Every day I thank him for his love for discourse to push for knowledge and truth. I thank him for allowing me to learn from him. Cancer continues to affect us all and we’re obligated to think outside of the box. With Ellison’s support and the $12.1 million raised this evening, we’re able to continue developing innovative programs at the Ellison Institute that our patients need today.”

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Dr. David Agus presenting.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

The award itself was designed by Chopard.

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The Rebels With A Cause award.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

Benioff and Ellison have a 30-year bromance that began when Ellison took Benioff under his wing and turned Benioff into a star executive at Oracle.

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Yoshiki Hayashi, Marc Benioff and Larry Ellison.
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Joshua Blanchard / Getty Images for Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC

Source: Business Insider


All in all, the event raised over $12 million for the Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine of USC.

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AOO Events