High achievers on our radar this month, from Bay Area heavyweights to the next generation of power players.
When the 23-year-old, Oakland-born actress was photographed rocking a plushy charcoal Berluti suit at the Harper’s Bazaar Icons party in September, the internet lost its mind: Not only was it a look, but it was the same look worn by Black Panther and Fruitvale Station star Michael B. Jordan at Vanity Fair’s Oscar party in early 2019. The question of “Who Wore It Better?” was posed across social media channels, and before long, Jordan graciously conceded via Instagram comment: The obvious winner of this style face-off was Zendaya. Who are we to disagree? The Euphoria and Spider-Man: Far From Home star, whose inclusive second collection with Tommy Hilfiger was a highlight at September’s New York Fashion Week, exuded an ultra-chill confidence at the fete, further solidifying her as a burgeoning style icon.
The chef behind Berkeley’s beloved destination restaurant Iyasare is climbing the culinary ladder all the way to the top of Transbay Transit Center’s Salesforce Park with his newest venture: A 9,600-square-foot rooftop restaurant that’s quickly becoming one of the most hotly anticipated openings of the foreseeable future. It’s rare for an eatery with no name, official opening date or even menu to garner this much buzz, but Kamio is undoubtedly to thank for that. The star chef has become famous for his California-inspired take on lesser-known Japanese comfort foods. And although the offerings may vary on this side of the Bay, the joint venture with Josh Sigel and Lasso Ventures will stay dedicated to the innovation and originality that befit its new venue. “It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and we cannot wait to share it with everyone,” says the chef.
The physiology professor at UCSF has been awarded the 2020 Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences for his research on subjects like chili peppers and pain. More specifically, how chemicals like capsaicin — which creates chili’s whole engulfing-your-mouth-in-flames thing — activates a pain receptor in the body called TRPV1, which sends an alert to the brain that basically screams “ouch!” His research is driven by the admirable quest to find a non-opioid alternative to treat pain. So, what will the scientist do with the $3 million cash prize? What he’s always done, he tells Scientific American: Give money to his East Bay community, support the arts, music and science education. The next time you’re hunched over in pain after devouring your favorite spicy Szechuan in Chinatown, think of Julius and his game-changing discovery.
Early last month, Boschetto donated the first of four $250,000 installments to the Salesian Boys’ and Girls’ Club — which is set to receive $1 million from the chairman and owner of Able Services over the course of four years. The board member’s money will be split evenly among the organization’s programming and educational scholarships, says its gregarious executive director, Randal DeMartini, and will eventually grow the scope of these initiatives to serve more children. The club hopes Boschetto’s generosity inspires other leaders to invest in the future of San Francisco. (If that’s you, dear reader, contact DeMartini directly for more information at 415-397-3069 — he’d love to take you for a bite to eat at Original Joe’s and tell you all about the organization’s work.) The million-dollar gift was pledged in memory of Boschetto’s parents, Angelo and Louise, who were staunch supporters of the kids at Salesian.
Last month, Narayan’s Redwood City–based ride-hailing service Zūm — the ultra-safe and effective Lyft for kids — announced its expansion to six more cities, including San Diego, Washington, D.C., and Chicago, from its small-scale beginnings in the Bay Area. Though Narayan’s isn’t the only kid-centric ride-hailing service in the country, it has grown to be one of the most prolific, having already completed more than 1 million rides. The Silicon Valley product leader’s ingenious idea came from a personal need that wasn’t unique: juggling a 9-to-5 and parenthood — two demanding, full-time jobs that are not always conducive to each other’s success. So she set out to lighten the load for other working parents, whose children need to get to school or soccer practice, violin lessons, and playdates comfortably and in one piece. The CEO is navigating Zūm toward eventually operating nationwide.