Washington (CNN) – "The gala is on track to be the most successful fundraiser in the university's history," University of California Stanislaus spokeswoman Eve Hightower told CNN, adding the foundation will exceed its fundraising goal.
According Hightower, the event netted $200,000 plus there were $58,000 in donations of "in kind services." Tickets for the dinner were $500 apiece with sponsorships for tables ranging from $5,000 to $50,000. The spokeswoman said the event "sold out in record time." […]
The papers did not detail the fee she would receive for the speech. She's believed to fetch about $100,000 per appearance.
Sarah Palin's CSU Speech
Turlock, CA -- In a 34-minute speech, she poked fun at controversy sparked by the March announcement she would appear at the public school and the outcry over her confidential contract, a portion of which students said they found in a university trash bin."Do I have my straws?" she said, referring to the contract with the school's nonprofit foundation. She said that she felt sorry for the Washington Speakers Bureau, which on her behalf negotiated "with the entire state of California."
The gala was the most lucrative single fundraiser in the university's history, netting more than $200,000. It thrust the campus into the national spotlight, with Democratic leaders condemning her confidential fee and liberal groups calling her a poor choice for the university's 50th anniversary gala because she had no ties to academia or the area. […]
"We must embrace our entrepreneurial drive, and allow America to remain the world's standard-bearer for excellence," she said. "Attorney General Jerry Brown and friends, this is California, do you really not have anything better to do?" […]
"My phone has been ringing off the hook all day with people still wanting tickets," foundation President Matt Swanson said Friday afternoon.The gala brought in $450,000 gross. University officials estimated they spent $190,000 and got $50,000 in in-kind donations, such as drinks and supplies.
Black, gold and crystal table settings, white flowers, lights and gauzy drapes transformed the university's cafeteria for the $500-per-ticket event. Swanson said the foundation sold about 370 tickets, in addition to several higher-priced sponsorships.
Guests dined on a five-course dinner that included buckwheat blini with smoked salmon, caprese salad, seared scallops and filet and halibut. They were greeted with a signed copy Palin's autobiography, "Going Rogue," on each seat.
Students To Protest Palin Visit
San Francisco Chronicle: Palin decries 'Dumpster divers' at Calif. campus
Sarah Palin leveled criticism at California's attorney general and others raising questions about her visit to a cash-strapped university, telling supporters that students had better things to do than dive through Dumpsters to find out how much she earns speaking. […]
"Students who spent their valuable, precious time diving through dumpsters before this event in order to silence someone ... what a wasted resource," she told the crowd dining in the campus cafeteria. "A suggestion for those Dumpster divers: Instead of trying to tell people to sit down and shut up ... spend some time telling people like our president to finally stand up," she said. […]
"Jerry Brown and friends, come on. This is California," Palin retorted. "Do you not have anything else to do?" The California Democrat said Palin was wrong to politicize the inquiry, which he said would be objective. "I don't think she understands the process," he said Friday. "It's about the operation of the foundation to see if they handled things professionally."
Officials say the university foundation that organized the fundraiser is legally exempt from public records requirements. Friday's sold-out dinner will bring in more than $200,000, making the gala the most successful fundraiser in the university's history, said university foundation board president Matt Swanson. "We're not here to make a political statement, we're here to make money," Swanson said. […]
"We cannot believe the stuff that has gone on with our campus over Sarah Palin's visit," said Alicia Lewis, 26, who was one of the team that retrieved the paperwork from a trash container in April. "Now they're fencing the campus off? It's outrageous." […]
About 100 protesters stood outside on the campus's leafy grounds raising up a Sarah Palin-shaped pinata and signs lettered "Spill, Baby, Spill" and "Open The Books," and chanting about school budget cuts.
"I was expecting quite a few protests," said Palin, who was accompanied by her daughter Willow. "It's been nothing but absolute loveliness here in this part of California, in spite of some of the hoopla around this dinner." […]
A group of about 30 Palin supporters from local tea party chapters also came to campus Friday afternoon, waving large American flags and carrying placards that read "Support Free Speech."
Denver Post: Palin pokes fun at California university protests
Protest Planned For Palin Visit
Stan State Student: Who Do We Believe?
Palin Goes To Modesto Hair Salon