This week, staff writer Laura Rysz talks with Dan LaMagna about the PurpleStride 5K Run/Walk, which raises money and awareness for pancreatic cancer.

  • Name: Dan LaMagna
  • Residence: Clarks Summit
  • Educational/professional background: Earned an educational doctorate in higher education leadership and management from Capella University and a master’s degree in sport management from East Stroudsburg University; has spent 12 years in higher eduction and is dean of students at Lackawanna College
  • Title: Media chairman


Q: Who is the 5K open to?

A: PurpleStride is a 5K run/walk. All ages are more than welcome to join and may either walk or run. To register, go to Strollers and wheelchairs are absolutely welcome at PurpleStride. Because of safety and liability reasons, pets are unfortunately not allowed at Pancreatic Cancer Action Network events. Service animals are, of course, welcome.

Q: What else will be on hand at the event?

A: There will be an opening ceremony hosted by Sharla McBride of WNEP-TV, where we honor those that we have lost to pancreatic cancer and highlight the fighters that are still fighting their battles. Various food and beverages also will be provided. You will also have a chance to interact with our local sponsors, Pizza by Pappas, and Keystone College, that might have some fun giveaways for you.

Q: What is your fundraising goal?

A: Our fundraising goal is $85,000.

Q: How will proceeds be used?

A: All proceeds will be used to fight this deadly disease, which has just a 9% five-year survival rate, making it one of the deadliest cancers. The funds will be used to fund various groundbreaking clinical initiatives, provide services to patients and survivors, and help us advocate on Capitol Hill for more federal funding.

Q: What is unique about this event?

A: Pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest cancers, and we have a grassroots army of volunteers ready to take on the disease. Most of our volunteers have been affected by the disease and could be your relatives, friends or neighbors. The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network is a volunteer-driven organization fundraising with more than 50 PurpleStride events across the country. Join us as we honor those that we have lost and those who are still fighting in your local community.

If you go

  • What: PurpleStride 5K Run/Walk
  • When: Saturday, June 8; opening ceremony, 9 a.m.; 5K run/walk, 9:30
  • Where: Lackawanna River Heritage Trail, 3 W. Olive St., Scranton (parking available at Scranton High School)
  • Details: Register online at easternpa. For more information, visit