Bloom Energy Stars and Strides 2021 Charitable Run: An Inaugural 5K/10K Race Honoring our Frontline Heroes

Carl Guardino
Executive Vice President, Government Affairs and Policy, Bloom Energy

Bloom Energy Stars and Strides 2021 Charitable Run: An Inaugural 5K/10K Race Honoring our Frontline Heroes

San Jose, California is not just where we are headquartered, it is also our home. That’s why we are thrilled to launch the Inaugural Bloom Energy Stars and Strides 5K/10K charity run/walk to be held on Sunday, August 22, 2021. Benefitting the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center (VMC) Foundation, the walk/run will kick-off and end at Discovery Meadow at 180 Woz Way in our backyard of downtown San Jose, marking Santa Clara County’s first in-person race since the pandemic began.

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I had the pleasure to join San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo, VMC Foundation Acting Executive Director Michael Elliott, Santa Clara County Public Health’s Rhonda McClinton-Brown, and Hospital Director Paul Lorenz recently at a press conference to officially announce our inaugural event and share how the funds raised will help VMC continue to provide life-saving services to those in need.

I showed up to the announcement in my own superhero costume (Batman, of course). I grew up admiring Batman on screen and in comic books. Today my heroes look a bit different, often sporting a hospital smock, surgical gown, lab coat or face mask. Throughout this past year, our healthcare workers met an unbearable challenge. Stars and Strides is our opportunity to honor and give back to our front-line heroes for their unwavering service and commitment to our community.

Our three rather ambitious goals are to:

  • Raise and contribute at least a quarter-million dollars for the lifesaving work of the Valley Medical Center Foundation;
  • Attract 4,000 paid participants;
  • Secure 300-400 caring volunteers to ensure our participants have a safe and fun experience

I am hopeful that we can meet these ambitious goals and provide a substantial foundation for successful Stars and Strides charitable races for many years to come!

“We have been far too apart for far too long, and it is wonderful to bring our community together again. I hope you all will join me – walking, running, just enjoying a great opportunity to give back to our wonderful community.”

The Honorable Sam Liccardo
Mayor of San Jose

The VMC Foundation supports 14 healthcare clinics that serve more than one million people every year, nine in ten of whom live within very limited means. Proceeds from this year’s Stars and Strides will help the VMC Foundation bring COVID-19 vaccinations to Santa Clara County’s under-served and vulnerable communities, support the mental well-being of our frontline healthcare workers after a particularly tumultuous year, and bolster services and aide for critical healthcare needs in the community, like pediatric diabetes.

“The people that work at VMC have been running hard for over a year. Our ask is that on August 22nd we come together as a community and run for them. We’re going to run and say thank you for their incredible hard work and sacrifices they have demonstrated this past year.”

Michael Elliott
VMC Foundation Acting Executive Director

We are privileged to have the support of our outstanding co-sponsors for this event including:

Bloom Energy’s Support for the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center

As our communities begin to recover from the global pandemic, Bloom Energy is excited to continue our collaboration with the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center to honor our front-line heroes and the people they serve. The Santa Clara VMC Foundation is an independent, community-driven, nonprofit organization founded to support and protect Silicon Valley’s most vital public healthcare institution – Santa Clara Valley Medical Center Hospital & Clinics – who serve more than one million people every year.

Along with Bay Area organizations and the University of Illinois’ SHIELD T3, we’ve raised more than $500,000 for the VMC Foundation to bring COVID-19 vaccinations to housebound, elderly, disabled and other residents in underserved areas through the purchase of a new mobile unit.

This vaccination roll-out strengthens our commitment to the pandemic relief efforts that started last year with our rapid COVID-19 testing lab with T3 Shield at our manufacturing facility in Sunnyvale. Using an innovative PCR saliva test developed by the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, the lab processes thousands of tests each day with same-day results, collecting a $5 donation from participating businesses, schools and other entities for each test sample. Following COVID-19 testing and vaccinations, this mobile unit, funded by these generous donations, will continue to serve the community long-term throughout Santa Clara County to provide critical health care services to those in need.

Bloom Energy in the Community

The past year has brought unprecedented challenges to our local and global community. With little preparation, individuals and organizations had to abruptly shift from normal practices to an adjusted lifestyle while taking the precautionary measures to stay healthy during a widespread pandemic. I am incredibly proud of how Bloom Energy employees rose to the occasion and responded to the needs of our community.

Through multiple projects, including a partnership with the state of California and Governor Gavin Newsom, we refurbished more than 1,300 out-of-service ventilators and returned them to service across the U.S., provided emergency power for healthcare facilities, aided testing facilities and powered makeshift, pop-up field hospitals. We also developed a ventilator splitting device to provide ventilation support to four people simultaneously in emergency situations, for which Fast Company recognized us in its 2021 “World Changing Ideas Awards”, and constructed and shipped oxygenator splitting kits to help communities in India with limited oxygenator equipment to treat more patients at the height of the pandemic.

Our local, state and federal governments have urged businesses and organizations to leverage their expertise and resources to help combat the pandemic. And Bloom has done just that, time and time again. Our unwavering leader and CEO, KR Sridhar, said it best at a March 2020 press conference hosted by Governor Newsom:

“What did we do? We simply answered a call.”

KR Sridhar
PhD, Bloom Energy Founder and CEO

It is an honor to work for a company that invests so intently and purposefully in our community. We hope you can join us in August after a challenging and momentous year as we rally our entire community to say thank you to our heroes — the essential workers who have tirelessly and bravely continued to do their jobs in the midst of a global pandemic. We are proud to celebrate and honor their outstanding service to our community.

This year’s inaugural race will spark a yearly tradition for Santa Clara residents, families, and the Bloom Energy team to gather for an event full of exciting and enjoyable festivities. More information regarding the race, details on registration, information to become a sponsor, volunteer or make a donation can be found at: