Beginning with progressive political campaigns in the 1970s, Clint Reilly has been motivated by a life-long commitment to social change through direct action.
“Clint Reilly has consistently stood up for the rights of the oppressed and the cause of social justice,” said Father Eugene Boyle, a mentor, teacher and friend of Mr. Reilly’s of more than 30 years.
In 2001, Cardinal William Levada, then- Archbishop for the Roman Catholic Diocese of San Francisco, appointed Mr. Reilly the first lay chairman of the Board of Directors of Catholic Charities and Catholic Youth Organization, which serves more than 40,000 people a year in San Francisco, Marin and San Mateo counties.
“You have demonstrated strong leadership and commitment to Catholic Charities/Catholic Youth Organization [and] you have been extraordinary, both in your personal generosity on behalf of the agency and in your leadership of the Archbishop’s Charity Council,” Leveda said, referring to Mr. Reilly’s role, along with his wife Janet, in creating the Archbishop’s Loaves and Fishes Dinner. The dinner raised more than $6 million during Mr. Reilly’s tenure on the Board. In addition, the Reilly’s have personally contributed more than one million dollars.
Among the array of programs operated by Catholic Charities/CYO are CYO Sports, St. Vincent’s Home for Boys, Mission Day Care, and the agency’s services are geared to provide support and relief to senior citizens, Alzheimer’s patients, people living with HIV/AIDS, low-income families, children and immigrants.
In addition to his work with CC/CYO, Mr. Reilly and his wife, Janet, have raised money for inner city schools and founded a scholarship program that subsidizes tuition at city Catholic high schools for economically disadvantaged youth.
In 1994, Mr. Reilly managed on a volunteer basis the campaign to pass a $52 million bond issue for the new Asian Art Museum at San Francisco’s Civic Center, and he and Janet were major donors to the museum’s $160 million capital campaign.
In 1992, when the city was threatened with the loss of the San Francisco Giants, Mr. Reilly was asked by then- Mayor Frank Jordan to help keep the team in the city, and he served as liaison between the mayor and a group of local business leaders led by Walter Shorenstein who eventually purchased the club and kept them in town.
In 1986, he also took on free of charge the Proposition M campaign to limit commercial building height in the city and prevent the “Manhattanization” of San Francisco. The initiative, credited with helping maintain the economic diversity of the city by saving affordable space for small business, later became an inspiration for similar initiatives in Seattle and other cities.
Today, Mr. Reilly, by backing a project led by Janet Reilly, helped to found Clinic by the Bay to meet the primary medical needs of the uninsured in San Francisco and San Mateo. In affiliation with the nonprofit group Volunteers in Medicine, Clinic by the Bay engages retired doctors, nurses and other volunteers to provide compassionate care, free-of-charge, to people in their own community.