The AT&T Central New York Civic App Challenge is a two month virtual hackathon for CNY's most talented computer scientists, software developers and hardware engineers to build products that have the potential to benefit the local community.

Partners Include:

Download our flyer here!


AT&T and its partners--Syracuse University, RvD IDEA, SUNY Oswego, The Tech Garden, CenterState CEO, Girls in Tech, and Hack Upstate--aim to unite developers in the greater CNY region to develop mobile apps serving community needs while demonstrating how mobile technologies can lead to the next generation of tech jobs and investment.

$18,000 in prizes

Participants are encouraged to collaborate with technologists, designers, entrepreneurs, engineers, advocates, community service professionals and anyone else with a passion for innovation and a love of the CNY region.


Developers already working on a community service-themed app for the public can submit it for consideration.

Grand Prize





Developers inspired to create a new civic application from scratch can submit it for consideration.

Grand Prize





Developers are encouraged to leverage and contribute to public data sets and APIs available on Github:



Kickoff Event

Thursday, September 11th

10:00 AM

Submissions Deadline

Tuesday, November 11th

11:59 PM

  • Deadline for online submissions via Hacker League

Demos / Awards

Wednesday, November 19th

10:00 AM


Adult Literacy Hackathon

September 13th - 14th

Hack Upstate

October 4th - 5th

Coding for a Cause @ Binghamton University

November 1st - 2nd

  • 85 Murray Hill Road, Binghamton University, Vestal, NY 13850


Civic Requirement

Submissions must address challenges relevant to the Central New York region. All mobile-optimized applications are welcomed as part of the competition. This includes: native apps for iOS and Android, mobile-optimized web applications, and SMS/MMS apps. If you have questions about your project ideas, shoot us a line!

Team Requirement

One member of each team must be a resident or attend an institute of higher learning within one of the 12 counties of Central New York (Onondaga, Oswego, Broome, Seneca, Cayuga, Cortland, Tompkins, Herkimer, Oneida, Madison, Lewis, Jefferson, and St. Lawrence).


Products must be submitted before 11:59pm November 11th via the Hacker League ‘Project’ submissions page.

Judging Criteria

  • Potential Impact on CNY (40%)
  • Execution (40%)
  • Creativity / Novelty (20%)

Note: All potential intellectual property belongs to the product teams.


Hon. David J. Valesky

New York State Senator

Hon. Samuel D. Roberts

New York State Assemblyman

Marissa Shorenstein

AT&T New York President

Deborah F. Stanley

President - SUNY Oswego

Seth Mulligan

Vice President for Innovation Services - CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity (CEO)

Kate Brodock

President - Girls in Tech

Stacey Keefe

Executive Director - RvD IDEA at Syracuse University

Steve Maier

Senior Technical Evangelist - Microsoft

Andrew Nicklin

Director - Open NY

Sean Branagan

Director - Newhouse School Center for Digital Media Entrepreneurship, Syracuse University

Partner - Echelon Capital

Partner - C3 Strategic

Founder & President - Communigration



Grand Prize ($7,500)

From Stephen Shaffer, TXT2EAT is an SMS-based service that allows anyone to text a number for information about shelters and food banks in the CNY area. TXT2EAT was also a product of Hack Hunger & Homelessness.

2nd Place ($1,500)

Thomas Hart II built Page Turner, an assistance eReader aimed at helping children and adults alike improve their literacy. Page Turner was also a product of the ProLiteracy Hackathon.


Grand Prize ($7,500)

PocketSights is a guided, interactive tour experience all from your mobile device and geared directly towards exploring Central New York. Built by Anthony Costa, Allen Ward, and Stefanie Pinsley.

2nd Place ($1,500)

Play2Sign is a fully featured Android app meant to help teach hearing children sign language, allowing them to better interact with their deaf peers. Built by Roy Thomas, Geetha Kardhalli Akkappagowda, Tirth Shah, Rohan Bajaja, and Martin Rothenberg.

Hack Upstate