About: As chief operating officer at Pelotonia, Joe Apgar drives the execution of the organization’s priorities and leads day-to-day management of staff. Under his leadership in 2019, the annual bicycle ride to raise funds for cancer research reached record participation and pledged more than $102 million to create the Pelotonia Institute for Immuno-Oncology at the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center. Apgar began his career at Rockbridge as part of the capital markets group, helping to raise more than $650 million of capital before leading company-wide strategic initiatives for the firm.
Partnering with thousands of companies, we could create an internship program that blends real-life work experience with positive mentoring and educational activities.
Outside of work: As a young cancer survivor himself and after seeing his sister go through cancer from the age of 5, Joe has dedicated himself to mentoring young cancer survivors. He is a frequent speaker for programs including BuckeyeThon, Nationwide Children’s Hospital Adoption Academy Panel, the Oncofertility Conference at Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Rock the Road Experience. At Pelotonia, Joe has championed the organization’s partnership with Cristo Rey Columbus High School, supporting the placement of four student interns at Pelotonia each of the last two years.
What does Columbus need to thrive? The resources existing in our city—higher education, diversified industries, philanthropy—have really spurred innovation throughout our city. However, we must recognize progress can create a dearth of affordable housing and an increasing income gap. My vision for the future of our city is that our forward progress will be defined as change that didn’t leave any citizens behind.
Apgar’s idea: We could establish a summer internship program modeled after the Cristo Rey program for high school students. Partnering with thousands of companies, we could create a program that blends real-life work experience with positive mentoring and educational activities designed to open the next generation’s eyes to the opportunities that exist in our society. Providing access to education and opportunities that many in our community may never have can transform our youth’s future.