Ridin' for Research: History

2013 R4R Raises over $67,000 for MCW Cancer Center

On March 3 more than 150 riders rode 2-6 hours and collected pledges in excess of $67,000 for the MCW Cancer Center, bringing our grand total over $1,112,000 for cancer research.  This year our committee decided to return to our roots, and have all monies collected go directly to the MCW Cancer Center to put a bigger impact on cancer reserach.  Our sponsors were: Crossfit 100, Barrett Moving & Storage, Elite Sports Clubs, YMCAs of Metro Milwaukee, Velocity, Brent Emery & Emery's Third Coast Cycling & Tri Shops, First Industry Realty, Image Master Photography, UW-Milwaukee Women's Basketball Team, Exciting Events, Stone Creek Coffee, Destination Donation, Hafner, Laskey & Loewen, S.C., David Insurance, Mawicke & Goisman, Schwanke-Kasten Jewelers, new Downtown Marriott, Aloft Hotel, M2L Life Coaching, Mitchell's Fish Market, TW Steel Watches, Kelly Lauria, David Hobbs Honda, The Bartolotta Restaurants, Marcus Hotels, Mo's Steakhouse, Shorewood Press, Shorewood High School's Graphic Arts Class, Rodizio Grill, Goldi's in Shorewood, Archer in Advertising, Anita Krier, Milwaukee Wave, Tropic Banana, Tom Dixon, Einstein Bagels in Shorewood, Phyllis Nasiopulos of Arbonne, and Cousin's Subs. Our Top Fundraisers were: ... Our Top Fundraising Groups were: ... Our Groups with the Most Participants were: ... 


Joanne Dixon initially announced retirement of the R4R event, but regrouped quickly when a team participants were willing to step in make it happen!  That team was lead by Ashley Black, and her business group, Leadership Menomonee Falls, as well as other former participants Scott Selby, Kim Dandrea & Michael Martz.  In about 4 months this group was able to coordinate presenters, prizes, venue, etc. to keep the mojo in place, and raised over $70,000 with only 148 people participating!

The 2012 Event took place at Ben Franklin Elementary in Menomonee Falls, and was successful because of everyone working together, and to our contributing sponsors: Menemonee Falls School District, Barrett Moving & Storage, Elite Sports Club, UWM Women's Basketball Team, Emery's Third Coast Cycling & Tri Shops, Exciting Events, Mikus & Lofy SC, Image Master Photography, David Hobbs Honda, Schwanke-Kasten Jewelers, YMCA of SE Milwaukee, and David Insurance.

This year's Top Three Fundraisers were Pat Dunks (Princeton Club), Garry Kelley (Elite Sports Club Mequon) and Michelle Draghicchioo (Westwood); Top Three Individual Fundraising Fitness Groups were Princeton Club $11,596, Milwaukee Athletic Club $6205 and Westwood $3755; Top Three Multi-Location Fundraising Groups were Elite Sports Clubs $11,175, YMCA's SE Milwaukee $10,179, and Gold's Gym $4967; and the Top Three Groups with the Most Participants were: Circus Bear Cycling Team (11), Gold’s Gym Downtown (9), and a tie for Princeton Club & SY YMCA (8 each).   


While Ridin' for Research was held at South Milwaukee Middle School again, Founder & Organizer, Joanne Dixon decided to change the format for this 11th annual event by emphasizing the fitness community coming together to workout and collect pledges for cancer research.  This year's effort offered registrants the opportunity to participate in Cycling, Zumba® and Yoga; they could mix it up however they wanted or just do all cycling.  Over 180 people participated in 2011 event and raised over $85,000 in donations, bringing our grand total to $948,000!

Our Top Three Fundraisers were: Pat Dunks (Princeton Club), Garry Kelly (Elite Sports Clubs), and Tom Dixon (MAC); Our Top Three Fundraising Groups were: Milwaukee Athletic Club $18,135, Princeton Club $15,158, and Aurora Fitness & Wellness $4,512; and our Top Three Groups with the Most Participants were: Le Club Sports Club (16), Princeton Club (15), Circus Bear Cycling Team (15).

2010 Live News Coverage from Fox 6

2010 RIDIN' FOR RESEARCH RAISES OVER $102,000 FOR THE MACC FUND bringing our grand total to $863,000!  Simply Amazing! 

For our 10th annual event we moved away from the fitness clubs and into So. Milwaukee Middle School, and thank South Milwaukee School District for this donation.  Making this change offered our participants, volunteers and organizers plenty of space to set-up and run our event, without disturbing club members.  We also had plenty of parking, restrooms, showers, space to store personal belongings, etc.  

Our Top 3 Fundraisers were: Pat Dunks (Southwest Y), Jean Staven (Be Fitness), and Scott Hoffman (Aurora Fitness). Our Top 3 Fundraising Groups were: YMCAs $22,969, Elite Sports Clubs $9,850, and the Wisconsin Athletic Club $9,806.  Our Top 3 Groups with the Most Participants were: YMCAs (35); Wisconsin Athletic Clubs (26); Elite Sports Clubs (18).  


This year's event was held center court at the Princeton Club in New Berlin, and featured some fun entertainment by our own version of the Blueman Group!   The proceeds collected from the 9th annual Ridin' for Research brought our grand total to $761,000!  

Top Individual Fundraisers:  Steve Prunuske (Milwaukee Athletic Club), Pat Dunks (SW-YMCA), Andy Ware (Rite Hite YMCA), Corrie Hebert (Princeton Club), David Mesick (Milwaukee Athletic Club)

Top Fundraising Groups or Organizations: Milwaukee Athletic Club - $19,655; Princeton Club - $13,637; Rite Hite YMCA - $12,704

Top Participating Groups or Organizations: Princeton Club - 38; Le Club Sports Club - 27; Rite Hite YMCA - 19.


More than 270 people participated in the 8th Annual Ridin’ for Research on Sunday, March 2 at the Harry & Rose Samson Family Jewish Community Center in Whitefish Bay, and collected over $137,000 in pledges to support critical pediatric cancer and related blood disorder research at the Medical College of Wisconsin.  The years fund raising efforts brings our grand total to $641,000.

Dr. David Margolis, the Director of the Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Program at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin addressed the crowd prior to the start of the ride. MACC Fund honorary board member Sandy Botham, the UWM Women’s Panther Basketball Coach, rode on stage during the 5th hour. Coach Botham’s players also assisted the riders throughout the day by distributing water, Powerade, bagels and fruit.  

Top Five Individual Fundraisers: Steve Prunuske, Milwaukee Athletic Club; Jean Staven, Westwood Health & Fitness; Ann Kelley, Milwaukee Athletic Club; Lori Boettcher, Westwood Health & Fitness; George Dionisopoulos, Westwood Health & Fitness.

Top Five Fund Raising Individual Clubs:  Westwood Health & Fitness ($23,245); Milwaukee Athletic Club ($21,130); Schroeder YMCA ($10,407); Le Club Sports Club ($9,783); and Innovative ($5,025).

Top Five Participating Groups or Clubs: Le Club Sports Club – 36; Schroeder YMCA – 24; Westwood Health & Fitness – 24; Harry & Rose Samson Family JCC – 15; Milwaukee Athletic Club – 15

RIDIN FOR RESEARCH 2007 Raises $148,000 for the MACC Fund for a grand total of $504,000!

This was an unusual event in that the National Weather Service shut down all of southeastern Wisconsin – which consequently also cancelled our event.  And although our R4R Planning Crew was quite upset about not being able to go forward with a year’s worth of planning, we did step back and realized that all the registered participants still managed to train and raise over $148,000 for the MACC Fund.  Monies raised from this event are helping to support research into the effective treatment and cure of childhood cancer research and related blood disorders.    

Top Five Individual Fundraisers: Steve Prunuske, Milwaukee Athletic Club; Ann Kelley, Milwaukee Athletic Club; Jean Staven, Westwood Health & Fitness; Susan Sanson, Princeton Club-New Berlin; John Gilbert, Le Club Sports Club

Top Five Fund Raising Groups or Clubs: Milwaukee Athletic Club ($19,173); Le Club Sports Club ($16,958); Westwood Health & Fitness ($10,575); Schroeder YMCA ($8,080); Princeton New Berlin ($6,947).

Top Five Participating Groups or Clubs: Le Club Sports Club – 35; Schroeder YMCA – 31; Highlander Elite – 22; Brookfield Bally Total Fitness – 18; Mukwonago Athletic Club – 18

Sponsors: KPMG, Good Frienz, John Peret Photography, Barrett Otto Nelson Moving Company, YMCA Schroeder Branch, David Hobbs Honda, Emery’s Fitness, Music in Motion, Brewers Charities Inc., Schwanke-Kasten Jewelers, the Repin’s family for Subway subs, Elite Fitness Clubs, Le Club Sports Club, Goodman Enterprises, UWM Women’s Panther Basketball Team, the Princeton Club, AIA Fastpromo, Park Bank, Harry & Rose Samson Family JCC, Bally Total Fitness, Caribou Coffee, Milwaukee Athletic Club, Innovative Health & Fitness, Bruegger’s Bagels, Country Springs Inn, Grand Geneva Resorts, Today’s TMJ4, Westwood Health & Fitness, Be Fitness, Form & Fitness, Lake Country Racquet Club, Mukwonago Athletic Club, Lococo Fruits, and Whole Foods. 

2006 Ridin' for Research Raises over $100,000 for the Medical College of Wisconsin Cancer Center!

Congratulations to everyone! On Sunday, February 26, 2006, Ridin' for Research once again raised over $100,000 for the Medical College of Wisconsin Cancer Center. To date, Ridin’ for Research has now contributed more than $356,000 toward cancer research.  

The top 3 individual fundraisers were: Jean Staven from Westwood Health & Fitness; Pat Dunks from the Southwest YMCA; and Marla Primack from Le Club Sports Club.   

The top 3 single-location fitness organizations which raised the most money were:  Westwood Health & Fitness for a total of $16,356 with 29 riders; Le Club Sports Club for a total of $14,249 with 31 riders; and Motion Fitness & Racquet for a total of $9,005 with 33 riders.   

The top 3 multi-location fitness organizations which raised to most money were: YMCA of Metro-Milwaukee for $18,839 – 70 riders; Bally Total Fitness for $11,358 with 44 riders; and Wisconsin Athletic Club for $7,130 with 29 riders.   

Thanks to our sponsors:  KPMG, David Hobbs, Barrett Otto Nelson Moving, HyDesign Warehouse, Onxy Waste, Le Club Sports Club, YMCAs, Good Frienz, John Peret Photography, Emery’s Fitness, Brass Bell Music, Brewers Charities Inc., Schwanke-Kasten Jewelers, the Repin’s family for Subway subs, Goodman Enterprises, UWM Women’s Panther Basketball Team, Motion Fitness & Racquet, AIA Fastpromo, Park Bank, Harry & Rose Samson Family JCC, Bally Total Fitness, Milwaukee Athletic Club, Bruegger Bagels, Country Springs Inn, Grand Geneva Resorts, Today’s TMJ4, Westwood Health & Fitness, Mukwonago Athletic Club, Lococo Fruits.  

2005 Ridin' for Research raises another $115,000! 

Ridin' for Research was again held at Highlander Elite in Brookfield, but this time on the tennis courts so we could accommodate more participants! Two exciting pieces of business happened for our event this year: Ridin‚ for Research officially became a 501.c.3 not-for-profit corporation and now in our fifth year, we have given over $256,000 to the Cancer Center for research! The 2005 event itself presented a check for $115,000 to the Medical College of Wisconsin.  

Statistics: Terri Mattacci was the Top Individual Fundraiser. Highlander Elite as a group brought in the most pledges. Highlander Elite also had the most participants.  

Planning & Event Team: Joanne Dixon, Susie Tweddell, Phil Steinbruecker, Meghan Lodes, Tom Dixon, Amy Stechschulte, Anne Tremel, Barb Xistris, Danielle Burton, Diane Trillegi, Jean Staven, Jeanne Majeski, John Gilbert, Kelly Lauria, Kristin Hollis, Kristy Suworoff, Ron Maurer, George Korkos, Dana Magalska, Terri Stevens, Heather Nelsen, Jill Sommers, Scott Knaffla.  

Sponsors & Supporters: The Irming Family, Mortgage Solutions, John Peret Photography, Emery's Bicycle & Fitness Stores, David Hobbs Honda, Amato Automotive Group, Schwanke Kasten Jewelers, Bishop Door Sales, Good Frienz, Le Club Sports Club, Star Trac Fitness Equipment, Goodman Enterprises, Brewers Charities, Inc., Aiafastpromo.com, Brass Bell Music, Subway "Eat Fresh", Active.com, Park Bank, Bally Total Fitness, Country Springs Hotel, Grand Geneva Resort & Spa, Green Bay Packers, Motion Racquet Fitness, Milwaukee Athletic Club, Harry & Rose Samson Family JCC, HyDesigns, Inc., Tripoli Country Club, Wisconsin Athletic Clubs, WTMJ/Channel 4, Alterra Coffee, Cedar Creek Pottery, FedEx-Kinkos in Glendale, Maggianos, Missing Links, Mukwonago Athletic Club, Neroli Day Spa, Saz's, Sendik's on Silver Spring, Shorewood Animal Hospital, Stein's Jewelers, Vita Fitness, Westwood Fitness, YMCAs of SE-Wisconsin  

2004 Ridin' for Research Raises $81,000!

Ridin' for Research moved to the west side of town, and was held at Highlander Elite in Brookfield on February 29. Joanne Dixon and George Korkos were the Event Chairs, and like the year prior, began the planning process in March 2003. The 2004 event again surpassed our expectations with dollars raised and participation. With the help of the 2004 Planning Committee and other volunteers, corporate sponsors, and the pledges brought in by all the Riders, Ridin' for Research raised over $81,000 for the Medical College of Wisconsin Cancer Center.  This brought our grand total to $141,000.

Statistics: Highlander Elite brought in the most pledges. Terri Mattacci was the top individual fundraiser. Bally Total Fitness had the most participants.  

Planning & Event Team: Joanne Dixon, Christi Clancy, Amy Daniels, Tom Dixon, George Korkos, Jon Jirschele, Kelly Lauria, Meghan Lodes, Dana Magalska, Ron Maurer, Phil Steinbruecker, Anne Tremmel, Susie Tweddell, Kathy Vogel, Pam Weis, and Barb Xistris.  

Sponsors & Supporters: The Irming Family, David Hobbs Honda, Schwanke-Kasten Jewelers, Goodman Enterprises, John Peret Photography, Seigel-Gallagher Commercial Real Estate Services, Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren SC, It's a Beautiful Day Cafe, B&B Enterprises d/b/a Bishop Door Sales Co., Elite Fitness & Racquet, Le Club Sports Club, Mortgage Solutions, Star Trac, Grand Geneva Resort & Spa, Milwaukee Athletic Club, Today‚s TMJ4, Miller Brewing Company, Subway, Park Bank, AIA-Fastpromos.com, Emery's Bicycle & Super Fitness Stores, Ben‚s Cyclery, Grafton Ski & Cyclery, Milwaukee Athletic Trainers, Shorewood Animal Hospital, Wheel & Sprocket, Wisconsin Athletic Club, The Packing House Restaurant, Motion Fitness & Racquet, Castle Marketing, The Milwaukee Bucks, Good Friendz, Neroli Salon & Spa, Mukwonago Athletic Club, Specialists in Sport Performance, YMCAs of Milwaukee, and Partners in Therapeutic Massage.   

2003 Ridin' for Research Raises $47,000!

The planning of the 2003 began in March of 2002. Joanne Dixon invited many of the key people who had helped in 2002 and together established the first Planning Committee. This committee served as representatives of fitness clubs from the surrounding areas and helped lay the groundwork for organizing all future events. The first order of business was the name of the event... hence the new name Ridin' for Research. The second agenda item was how to raise more money. The committee agreed, bring in corporate sponsors, offer incentives for raising funds, and promote everywhere. With the support of Members, Instructors, and Management of so many fitness facilities, we had over 200 people participate. And through our 2003 Corporate Sponsors & Incentive Prize Contributors that inspired so many to raise so much, the 2003 Ridin' for Research raised over $47,000... bringing our grand total to $60,000! The proceeds from this event now benefits Dr. Gloria Halverson's clinical research project for females with cancer who are of pre-childbearing ages. 

Stats: Le Club Sports Club brought in the most pledges. Dale Rhyan brought in the most individual pledges. Le Club Sports Club had the most participants.  

Planning & Event Teams: Joanne Dixon, George Korkos, Sarah Addeo, John Fitch, Amy Daniels, Tony Macias, Denise Kennedy, Kelly Lauria, Lori Witmer, Christine Burke-Duecker, Pam Weis, Megan O‚Brien, Phil Steinbruecker  

Sponsors & Supporters: David Hobbs Honda, Schwanke-Kasten Jewelers, Harry & Rose Samson Family Jewish Community Center, Grand Geneva Resorts, Goodman Enterprises, Milwaukee Athletic Trainers & Wheel & Sprocket, The Irming Family, Have a Nice Day Café, Missing Links, Andrew Automotive, City Wide Disposal, Quarles & Brady, Thermo Set, Subway, Mortgage Solutions, Spellman Trailers Inc., Le Club Sports Club, YMCAs of Milwaukee, AIA Fast Promotions, Bally Total Fitness, Motion Fitness & Racquet, Manitowish Ovens, Sendik's in Whitefish Bay.   

2002 Newly Named: Ridin' for Research -- Year 2 -- Raises over $10,000!

It was the positive feedback and encouragement from those who participated in 2001 that gave Joanne the determination to plan and coordinate the 2002 Event. During this planning process, she connected with key people such as Sarah Addeo from In-Motion (now with Northshore Elite) and George Korkos of Bally Total Fitness. With their support, the help of email, early registration & posted information, the Event sold out 2 weeks early. This time we used 65 bikes, had 101 riders, and raised almost $10,000. This time all the proceeds went to the breast cancer research of Dr. Ashwanni Khanna, Associate Professor of Medicine (Nephrology). Key players like George Korkos, Kelly Lauria, John Fitch, and Ron Mauer shined for this event. Either through donations they brought in and/or the just with their assistance in staging the event. George really took the lead and help train future riders to "go the distance", as well as presented during the Event itself. People like John Fitch, Dave Wherry, and Steve Woods not only helped to decorate the room, but also moved all the bikes to and from Le Club by way of pickup trucks. Seeing the success in collecting pledges by Kelly Lauria and Sarah Addeo only proved we had something that people wanted to participate in and raise money. The best part of this fundraising effort is anyone can sit on a stationery bike and pedal, especially if it is for the right reasons; and raising money for cancer research is enough reason to settle in for one to six hours and ride for others, and to make a difference.  

Stats: Most Dollars Raised for a Club was Southwest YMCA; Most Individual Dollars Raised was Kelly Lauria; and Most Club Participants was Le Club Sports Club.  

2001 - Year One -- original name: Spin-for-Women's Cancer Prevention -- Raises $3000!

The first ride effort began in February 2001 as an indoor cycling fund raising event benefiting the Medical College of Wisconsin Cancer Center. Founder, coordinator, spin instructor, wife & mother, Joanne Dixon started the event knowing that she wanted to raise money for cancer research since so many people around her friends and family were being diagnosed by this dreaded disease. Having lost her mother (not to cancer) many years ago, and the fear of losing close friends has given her the "drive" to make a difference. With the support of her family and friends, and the members, instructors and club management of Le Club Sports Club, Harry & Rose Samson Family JCC, and Schroeder YMCA, she organized a 4-hour Spinning Event using 35 spin bikes. Sixty-five people participated in the first event and together they raised almost $3,000 for the Cancer Center. The monies from this Event helped support the ovarian cancer research of Dr. Owen Griffith, Professor of Biochemistry.