"Hackathon" Results in New Website for The Ride For Roswell

New site is built in nine hours overnight at national conference
Wednesday, October 9, 2013

BUFFALO, NY – In the wee hours of October 8 as most of Western New York slept, over 75 computer programmers, writers, and graphic designers from around the country were gathered around their laptops at the Hyatt Regency Buffalo, creating a new website for The Ride For Roswell.

The redesigned website will make The Ride site mobile-friendly and simpler for users to navigate. “An improved website design will not only enhance the Ride experience for our participants and supporters, but will hopefully increase our fundraising capability so that we can continue to support Roswell Park’s mission to find cures and save lives,” said Ride Director Bryan Sidorowicz.

The Hackathon, or “hack marathon,” was part of the national Higher Education Web Conference, a four-day seminar featuring 60+ workshops, events, and presentations by industry leaders including a keynote presentation from Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. The Hackathon, which lasted from 7 p.m. on Monday until 4 a.m. Tuesday, was a centerpiece of the conference.

Donald L. Trump, M.D., FACP, President and CEO of Roswell Park Cancer Institute, kicked off the event by briefing the contributors – from several states and two countries – on the Institute and The Ride. Seated at tables according to their skill sets, the group then received their assignment from the RPCI web team. Fueled by coffee, energy drinks, and a midnight delivery of beef on weck, they worked continuously throughout the night to develop, program, and design the site. It will debut to the public when registration opens this winter.

“We’ve always believed in giving back to our host city, and this year the stars aligned in the form of this Hackathon,” said Mark Greenfield, Director of Web Services at the University at Buffalo and Conference Chair. “We have some of the most gifted and creative web developers in the country, and one of the most worthy causes in The Ride. It was a natural partnership.”

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About The Ride For Roswell
Founded in 1996, The Ride For Roswell is an annual cycling event that benefits research and patient care programs at RPCI. The Ride starts and finishes on the North Campus of the University at Buffalo in Amherst, N.Y. With routes ranging from 3 miles to 100 miles, cyclists of all abilities participate in The Ride. In 2012, The Ride For Roswell was expanded to include an Opening Ceremony, which takes place the evening before ride day. The Opening Ceremony brings riders, virtual riders, volunteers and supporters together with RPCI doctors, patients, cancer survivors and employees to rally against cancer. www.rideforroswell.org

About Roswell Park Cancer Institute
The mission of Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI) is to understand, prevent and cure cancer. Founded in 1898, RPCI is one of the first cancer centers in the country to be named a National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center and remains the only facility with this designation in Upstate New York. The Institute is a member of the prestigious National Comprehensive Cancer Network, an alliance of the nation’s leading cancer centers; maintains affiliate sites; and is a partner in national and international collaborative programs. For more information, visit www.roswellpark.org, call 1-877-ASK-RPCI (1-877-275-7724) or email askrpci@roswellpark.org. Follow Roswell Park on Facebook or Twitter.

About HighEdWeb
The Higher Education Web Professionals Association (HighEdWeb) is a not-for-profit organization of Web professionals working at institutions of higher education. Its annual conference, HighEdWeb 2013, is created BY and FOR higher education Web professionals. In 2013, the conference will welcome close to 800 participants to Buffalo, NY on October 6-9. 2013.highedweb.org/ #heweb13

Media Contact: 

Leslie Garrity, Director of Strategic Marketing & Communications 
716-845-1038
leslie.garrity@roswellpark.org