Philanthropy

Thomas Weisel has invested in a number of activities where he has great knowledge, passion and can make a significant impact. These have been in the arenas of arts, athletics, health care, and education.

Philanthropy in Sports


Contributions to Skiing and Cycling

U.S. Ski Team fund raiser, 2000.  Thom with Michael Bloomberg, Peter Kellogg, and gold medal recipients. New York, 2000.

Thom with USA Cycling CEO Steve Johnson and several Champion Club Members. From LEFT to Right: Mick Hellman, Skip Battle, Steve Johnson, Rich Silverstein, Matt Barger and Ed McCall.

Mr. Weisel has been on the US Ski and Snowboard Team Board since 1977 and was the Chairman from 1983-1994. During his tenure he reorganized the national governing body of skiing by merging the United States Ski Association with the US Ski Team, revamping its governance, board structure, and funding. He is responsible for attracting many of the current board members who serve today. Since then, the US Ski Team has captured more Olympic medals than any other nation. Mr. Weisel awarded the Belgen Award in 1999 by US Ski Team for his contributions to the sport.

Outside the US Ski Team’s “Center of Excellence” there are several tributes to a number of people who have had a material effect on the team. Under Thom Weisel it reads: “One of America’s most successful financial giants. Thom Weisel’s real passion has always been sport. An avid skier and cyclist, Weisel was among an important group of businessmen who played key leadership roles with the US Ski and Snowboard Team Foundation. Weisel joined the then US Ski Team Educational Foundation in 1977 and was its chair during a pivotal period from 1983-94. Weisel’s leadership however, has long gone well beyond his financial contributions. His drive, passion and genuine love for athletes kept him intimately involved in the USSA for over 30 years.”

Mr. Weisel is the Founder of the US Cycling Foundation, has been a member of the Board since 2000, and is the board’s current Chairman. He reorganized the US Cycling Federation board on which he served for a year. He changed the size and composition of the board, reorganized its governance, strategic planning, and funding model. Over the course of the last 15 years, revenue for US Cycling has gone from $ 5.5 million to $14 million, memberships have grown from 30,000 to 64,000, and member clubs have increased from 1,100 to 2,700. The annual athletic budget has increased from $1 million to $4.5 million. The Federation was bankrupt in 2000 prior to his involvement and now has $15 million in cash. On the athletic side, the Olympic medal count has doubled from 2 to 4 medals and the World Championship medal count has also doubled from 7 to 14.

For his efforts in skiing and cycling, Mr. Weisel was awarded the Olympic Foundation Steinbrenner Award in 2011.

Exhibition space in de Young museum established in 2014 for the Thomas W. Weisel Family Collection of North American Art.

Bowl (bird and rabbit), ca. 1010–1130.  Mimbres, Earthenware with pigment.  4 5/16 x 10 5/8 in. (11 x 27 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Bowl (two faces and insects), ca. 1010–1130. Mimbres, Earthenware with pigment. 4 3/4 x 10 1/16 in. (12 x 25.5 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Bowl (human-avian composite), ca. 1010–1130. Mimbres, Earthenware with pigment. 4 x 9 3/4 in. (10.1 x 24.7 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Bowl (figure inside fish), ca. 1010–1130. Mimbres, Earthenware with pigment. 4 1/2 x 10 1/4 in. (11.5 x 26 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Jar, ca. 1450–1500. Sikyatki, Earthenware with polychrone. 5 11/16 x 9 1/16 in. (14.5 x 23 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Vessel, ca. 1450–1500. Sikyatki, Earthenware with polychrome. 8 11/16 x 17 1/2 in. (22 x 44.5 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Vessel, ca. 1890–1910. Attributed to Nampeyo (Hopi-Tewa, ca. 1860–1942), Earthenware with polychrome. 7 1/2 x 15 3/8 in. (19 x 39 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Water jar, ca. 1850–1870. Trios, Earthenware with polychrome. 10 3/4 x 12 13/16 in. (27.3 x 32.5 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Olla, ca. 1880. Hopi, Earthenware with polychrome. 10 1/16 x 13 3/8 in. (25.5 x 34 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Water jar, ca. 1890–1910. Acoma, Earthenware with polychrome. 11 5/8 x 11 13/16 in. (29.5 x 30 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Tray, ca. 1890. Yavapai-Apache, Fiber. 4 5/16 x 14 1/16 in. (11 x 35.7 cm).Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Shield, ca. 1820–1850. Acoma or Jemez, Hide and pigment. 20 x 20 in. (50.8 x 50.8 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Wearing blanket (first-phase chief blanket, Ute style), ca. 1830. Navajo, Wool; weft-faced plain weave, dovetail and diagonal-join tapestry weave, eccentric curved weft. 52 x 70 in. (132.1 x 177.8 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Serape, ca. 1855–1860. Navajo, Wool; weft-faced plain weave, interlocked tapestry weave, eccentric weft. 70 1/2 x 54 1/2 in. (179.1 x 138.4 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Poncho serape, ca. 1830. Navajo, Wool; weft-faced plain weave, interlocked tapestry weave. 78 x 51 in. (198.1 x 129.5 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Serape, ca. 1850. Navajo, Wool; weft-faced plain weave, interlocked tapestry weave, eccentric curved weft. 91 x 62 in. (231.1 x 157.5 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Serape, ca. 1865. Navajo, Wool; weft-faced plain weave, interlocked tapestry weave, eccentric curved weft. 70 1/2 x 50 3/4 in. (179.1 x 128.9 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Seated figure, late 19th century. Kwakiutl (Kwakwaka’wakw), Wood and paint. 55 11/16 x 19 11/16 x 21 5/8 in. (141.5 x 50 x 55 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Bear effigy, ca. 1870. Haida, Wood and paint. 29 1/2 x 20 7/8 x 44 1/2 in. (75 x 53 x 113 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Mask, ca. 1800–1850. Tsimshian, Wood and pigment; shell inlay. 10 1/16 x 8 1/16 x 5 1/8 in. (25.5 x 20.5 x 13 cm). Gift of the Thomas W. Weisel Family to the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Richard Serra “Switch”  plates, each 52’ long x 13’6” high x 2” wide, “1999.” Donated to NY MOMA in 2002.

Andreas Gursky “Rhein” 81 1/2” x 140 1/2”, “1999.” Donated to NY MOMA in 2002

Mark Grotjahn “Untitled 41.31” 93 1/8 x 72 3/8 cm, “2010.” Promised gift to SF MOMA.

Lee Mullican “Dynaton Triptych”40 x 50, “1952.” To be loaned for SF MOMA’s Spring 2016 re-opening.

Nathan Oliveira “Walking Man #2”96 x 144 (3 panels of 96 x 48 ea), “1959.” To be loaned for SF MOMA’s Spring 2016 re-opening.

Joan Brown “Bathing Girls”72 x 96,  “1962.” To be loaned for SF MOMA’s Spring 2016 re-opening.

Lee Mullican “The Luminous Loot”40 x 50, “1948.” To be loaned for SF MOMA’s Spring 2016 re-opening.

Mark Bradford “Thievery by Servants”118 x 358 in., “2013.” To be loaned for SF MOMA’s Spring 2016 re-opening.

Mr. Weisel serves on the board of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA). He is currently Chairman of the Committee on Trustees, a post he has held for six years. He has recruited many tech CEOs and Silicon Valley venture capitalists to the board. Mr. Weisel is also on the SFMOMA Executive Committee, Tech Committee, and Campaign Finance Committee. The museum recently raised $600 million for a major expansion, in which Mr. Weisel played a role. Mr. Weisel also served on the Board of Trustees of the New York Museum of Modern Art (NYMOMA) from 1996 to 2011.

Mr. Weisel has gifted or promised numerous art pieces to the SFMOMA and NYMOMA from his personal collection including works by Mark Grotjahn, Tony Berlant, Wayne Thiebaud, Joan Brown, Richard Serra, Andreas Gursky, Mark Bradford and Nathan Oliveira.

In 2014, Mr. Weisel donated approximately 200 pieces of art from his Native American collection to the de Young Fine Arts Museum in San Francisco and established a research grant to enhance the study, appreciation, or presentation of Native American Art.

In 2016, when the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art reopens after the yearlong expansion construction, it will rename three of its California art galleries after Mr. Weisel. Mr. Weisel also endowed the position of curator of painting and sculpture at SFMOMA in 2014.

Mr. Weisel established The Thomas Weisel Family Art Foundation to oversee the various gifts and endowments he has made in order to ensure they are maintained by the museum in a manner consistent with the original gift agreement and its charitable intent. Thomas Weisel and his family have established substantial relationships with the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the de Young Museum of Fine Arts. The Foundation intends to continue to support these institutional levels.

Thomas Weisel has supported numerous health causes over the years. His main focus in this area has been in support of Dr. Jonathan Terdiman, who is co-director of the Center for Inflammatory Bowel Disease and the Colorectal Cancer Prevention Program at UCSF Medical Center. The Weisel family started working with Dr. Terdiman about ten years ago to fund genetic counseling activity for his patients.

This evolved into a project to develop a website for likeminded patients who were similarly affected by genetic issues. This software program is called KinTalk. Since its development and launch in 2013, there are over 500 KinTalk users and subscribers as well as a Youtube channel providing the most up to date information. There is a podcast library, and a family communication portal to share their genetic information. UCSF is now trying to roll this activity to other disciplines to continue its growth around the world.

The family has contributed over many decades to the California College of the Arts (formerly the California School of Arts and Crafts), Stanford University, Harvard University, Dartmouth College, The Branson School, and several other local secondary schools.

For eight years, Mr. Weisel served on the Stanford Endowment Management Board, 2001-2009. He also served on the Harvard Business School Advisory Board from 2007-2009. Mr. Weisel is currently on the Harvard Business School Northern California Advisory Council.

From 1996 to 1997, Mr. Weisel co-chaired the Capital Campaign for the School of Arts and Crafts to build their San Francisco campus. He believes in the CCAC’s mission and thinks the institution plays a useful purpose for aspiring artists and designers. The family made a lead gift to that campus building, which has a hall named after it. In addition, Mr. Weisel organized support for the expansion through his role at Montgomery Securities, and the downtown campus signage bears the Montgomery name.