Hillary Clinton Urges Community To Close The Tech Gap In Our Own Backyard

Hillary Clinton took to the stage at Dreamforce Tuesday to discuss the economic divide around the world and in San Francisco’s own backyard. “We need to make sure the benefits of tech outweigh the pitfalls, and that tech is most evenly distributed,” the potential 2016 Presidential candidate and former Secretary of State told the audience.

Clinton rattled off grim statistics about Oakland’s “word gap,” which show there is just one book for every 300 kids in that area. “Imagine that, 300 children all passing one book around,” she said. She then discussed a joint program with Marc Benioff, Co-founder and CEO of Salesforce, to help close that gap in the Bay. The Talk Read Sing campaign is also supported by UCSF, Too Small to Fail, the Clinton Foundation and San Francisco-based advertising agency Goodby Silverstein & Partners.

Dreamforce is giving back this year with the Four Days of Giving Back, where each day emphasizes different charitable organizations and giving efforts. Benioff integrated a 1/1/1 giving model within Salesforce. This is a model in which the company gives 1 percent of profits, 1 percent of equity and 1 percent of employee hours back to the community. Google and other tech companies have adapted portions of this same model within their own culture.

Clinton also sat down for a one-on-one chat with Klaus Schwab from the World Economic Forum. The two discussed bringing technology to the global masses. Clinton emphasized the importance of keeping the Internet open, especially in countries that need that access during civil unrest.

Schwab asked Clinton if she was going to run for president, reminding her he’d asked the same question back in 1999 when she first contemplated doing so. “I don’t want to make any news today,” Clinton demured. She did say she “Hopes the U.S. joins the ranks of countries that have overcome the hurdle of gender equality.” “Please stick to the answer in 1999, all those years ago,” urged Schwab.

Benioff gave $25,000 to the Ready for Hillary super PAC – the maximum amount allowed – and Clinton and Benioff appeared outside afterwards to stuff bags full of books and school supplies for Oakland school children.