Honoree: Demi Weitz
While most college students are trying to find their paths in life, 19-year-old Demi Weitz has already made philanthropic history.
Weitz, one of the founders behind the RW Quarantunes fundraising initiative, raised more than $30 million for 50 charities in just 15 months. Quarantunes began in her family kitchen right when the pandemic hit in March 2020. As she was about to celebrate her 17th birthday, her father Richard Weitz, a partner at the William Morris Endeavor (WME) talent agency, surprised Weitz and her friends with a Zoom party featuring a pianist and singer from Chicago’s Redhead Piano Bar. That led Demi and Richard to plan more livestream invitationonly concerts. Richard used his connections and his savvy as one of Hollywood’s most prominent agents to line up an incredible range of popular celebrities, ranging from Billie Eilish to Sting, who performed at their concerts to benefit important causes in the community.
It was Demi’s idea to use this platform to raise money to support a multitude of charities, such as The Alliance for Children’s Rights, a nonprofit that advocates for thousands of impoverished, abused and neglected children and teenagers in Los Angeles County each year and the families who care for them. As an example of Weitz’s character and passion to help others in need, she proactively identified Saban Community Clinic in Los Angeles as a charitable organization that was likely to be negatively impacted by the pandemic.
She knew the clinic would be overwhelmed with virus patients, so it was her idea to ask the concert’s guests to make donations in support of the clinic. Her initial goal was to raise $10,000, which they accomplished in just an hour. Within 24 hours, they raised $100,000 through GoFundMe and organizational matching donations. The daughter and father duo produced a show nearly every week, often twice on weekends, supporting a new charity each time, including Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and the L.A. Food Bank, among many others.