Biking to Cure Cancer: Athletic Event Fundraising at Its Best

Top Quote Billy Starr, founder of the Pan-Mass Challenge, will be the Keynote Speaker at Fall Kick-off Event for Women in Development of Greater Boston (WID). End Quote
  • Boston, MA-NH (1888PressRelease) October 09, 2012 - On October 31, Billy Starr, founder and executive director of the Pan-Mass Challenge (PMC), will be the keynote speaker at Women in Development of Greater Boston's Fall Kick Off event. This is a unique opportunity to hear directly from the pioneer of the athletic fundraising industry. The PMC donates 100% of every rider-raised dollar to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute through its Jimmy Fund. The PMC is an annual bike-a-thon that currently raises more money for charity than any other single event in the country.

    Billy Starr founded the PMC in 1980 when there were just a handful of walks designed to raise awareness, not money. Starr entered the field with a commitment to raise money for cancer research. He was 29 years old at the time, a life-long athlete, and had lost his mother, uncle and cousin to cancer. The PMC was the first hardcore biking event in the U.S. that set out to raise as much money as possible for charity.

    Starr created a business model for athletic fundraising events that is the gold standard used today: 100% of every rider-raised dollar goes to cancer research and treatment. Through the PMC, thousands of people work toward one common goal - funding cures for cancer. Since 1980 the 190-mile bike-a-thon has raised $338 million for cancer research and patient care. Next week, it is anticipated that the PMC will donate a record $36 million more - the fundraising effort from this year's ride.

    More than 3,300 volunteers ensure that the cyclists have all they need for the two day ride across the state of Massachusetts from Sturbridge to the finish line in Provincetown. Cancer patients and survivors often ride along side the doctors and nurses who treat them, and teams are formed to ride in memory of loved ones lost to cancer.

    WID members will have a rare opportunity to learn from Billy Starr who consults on event programming throughout the country. August 2012 marked the 33rd PMC with over 5,500 riders who for the Jimmy Fund. Riders came from 36 states and eight countries, and tapped more than 240,000 donors.

    For more information about Billy Starr and the PMC, visit:

    WID programs feature distinguished speakers on a variety of topics, skill-building workshops, and special seminars on timely issues for all levels of development professionals, including social networking events and the WID Annual Meeting.

    The public is invited to attend the breakfast on October 31 at The Westin Copley Place, 10 Huntington Avenue, Boston, from 8:00 to 9:30 a.m. Tickets are $45 and are available at


    Established in 1980, Women in Development of Greater Boston ( is a nonprofit professional association of nearly 1,000 members whose mission is to promote the importance of philanthropy and support the advancement of women in the development profession. The organization offers a variety of programs, services and opportunities for volunteer involvement and is one of the largest organizations of advancement professionals in Massachusetts.

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