Joe Apgar, President of Pelotonia, joins this week’s podcast to discuss the personal & professional journey that led him to his current role and how it informs his approach to leadership

It can often feel like all peer-to-peer fundraising professionals are cut from the same cloth—hardworking, goal-oriented, outgoing and passionate about making a positive impact on the world. However, the truth is that our industry boasts a diverse array of individuals with distinct backgrounds, strengths and connections to our missions.

P2P fundraising undeniably thrives on community. The most successful programs in this field prioritize relationship-building and meaningful connections, meaning it’s critical for P2P professionals to bring their authentic selves, unique skill sets and personal experiences to the forefront.

The most effective P2P leaders are those who recognize the value of these diverse experiences and harness the individual strengths of each team member to contribute to the larger collective. In doing so, they create a harmonious and empowered environment that drives the industry – and our missions – forward.

In this episode, P2PPF’s Marcie Maxwell sits down with Joe Apgar, President of Pelotonia, one of the nation’s largest cycling events, which benefits The Ohio State University – The James Cancer Hospital. Joe shares his personal story as a cancer survivor, a cancer sibling and a Pelotonia participant, his professional journey in finance, and how those unique experiences prepared him for a leadership role at Pelotonia and continue to shape his work with participants and his team.

In today’s episode, we’ll explore:

-How Pelotonia weathered the pandemic and came back stronger 
-How to fail quickly – and learn from it
-Ways to cultivate and retain great talent

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Podcast Guest


Joe Apgar

President, Pelotonia

Joe Apgar is the President of Pelotonia, which was established in 2008 with the objective to fund lifesaving cancer research and today is a rapidly growing non-profit. In this role, he is responsible for leading all aspects of Pelotonia’s operations and ensuring the success of the organization’s strategic plan.

Joe is a cancer survivor and was diagnosed with testicular cancer during his senior year of college. Joe began riding and fundraising for Pelotonia after being declared cancer-free. After graduating from Penn State University with a degree in finance, he spent eight years working at Rockbridge Capital, a Columbus-based private equity firm. While at Rockbridge, Joe was a member of the founding team of RTRX, a three-day leadership experience initially
launched as an event for the hospitality industry to support cancer research. Today, RTRX now raises more than $500,000 annually for Pelotonia. Joe previously served as Chief Operating Officer at Pelotonia, where he focused on leading the organization’s day-to-day operations, community engagement, event planning, technology, and marketing. Prior to this role, he focused on strategic fundraising and operational initiatives aimed at growing the reach of the Pelotonia community.

Joe was named to the 40 Under 40 Class of 2020 by Columbus Business First and the Future 50 Class of 2021 by Columbus CEO Magazine. Joe was also selected as a member of the 2022 Young American Leaders Program at Harvard Business School along with nine other young, high-impact leaders from Columbus. He is a passionate advocate for adoption and young adult cancer survivorship, and he speaks frequently about the importance of cancer research, advocacy, survivorship, and the unique challenges faced by adolescent and young adult survivors.

Joe lives in Columbus, Ohio with his wife, Jill, and his daughter, Cora.

Podcast Host


Marcie Maxwell

Managing Director, Peer-to-Peer Professional Forum

Marcie Maxwell is the Managing Director of the Peer-to-Peer Professional Forum. Marcie joined the P2PPF team in 2021 after 15+ years as a front-line fundraiser, national events & campaign director and fundraising consultant. In her role, Marcie serves as a primary thought leader and community builder for the peer-to-peer fundraising industry. She started her career in fundraising with 10+ years at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, where she ran local fundraising events, managed national volunteer partnerships and launched their national walk program. She then spent 5+ years as the Director of Chapter Fundraising Events with Make-A-Wish America, where she provided strategy, support & training to 60 chapters on the full event portfolio – walks, school fundraising, an endurance hiking program and galas & social events. In her most recent role at Charity Dynamics, she partnered with clients to provide strategic guidance and analysis to help them optimize and grow their peer-to-peer fundraising events & campaigns. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communication from Louisiana State University and a master’s degree in Ethical Leadership from Christian Brothers University. She resides in Memphis, TN.