Grateful to have survived two bouts with cancer, Bill Koman, CEO and chairman of The Koman Group, along with his wife, Amy, and three daughters, decided to make a difference. Committed to accelerating cures for cancer, they launched Pedal the Cause in St. Louis in 2009, and in 2013, they created the West Coast branch of the organization. The annual challenge, Padres Pedal the Cause (taking place Nov. 17), includes four cycling courses over the Coronado Bridge, spin classes, a 5K walk/run and a Kids Challenge, with 100 percent of proceeds funding cancer research in San Diego. “We raised $2.4 million last year, and our goal for 2018 is $3 million-plus,” explains Bill. “We’ve raised over $30 million between the two cities,” adds Amy. In San Diego, an average of 15 to 20 Padres Pedal the Cause Discovery Grants are awarded annually to collaborative Discovery Teams made up of research scientists and physicians from local institutions. In honor of their philanthropic work, the Koman Family Outpatient Pavilion was named at UC San Diego Health last March. All three of the Koman daughters are dedicated cancer advocates who have been participating in the event since its inception. This year, Blaire Koman, now a junior at La Jolla Country Day School, is the Teen Team captain, following her older sisters’ footsteps, and they have raised close to $200,000 to date. “I have been exposed to cancer since a young age, and by going out to ride, I honor these people and support the important research going on in San Diego,” says Blaire.
Pedal the Cause takes place on Nov. 17. Take part or get out and support those who do, it’s for a great cause!