Joan Marie Reed, long- time resident of Kankakee, IL, passed away April 11 on her 65th birthday. A proud Irish lass, she was born in Aurora, IL, youngest child of Lucetta and Thomas McAleese. She attained her bachelor’s degree from Illinois State University as well as a Master of Education from National Louis University and a Master of Arts/English Education from Olivet Nazarene University.
Joan worked as an educator for over 35 years
in many primary schools, high schools, colleges and universities. At 24, she became the youngest faculty member to be awarded tenure at Plainfield High School and later was elected to the Plainfield District 202 School Board. During her 6 years with St. Francis Academy, she served as Faculty Advisor to the student newspaper (The SFA Focus), which won numerous awards both state and national for excellence.
Joan’s certifications for teaching included English,
Special Ed and Gifted.
She was active in a variety of civic/community organizations including Two Rivers Reading Council, Community Emergency Re- sponse Team (CERT), and Wright in Kankakee (for historic preservation of the Bradley House).
A passionate political activist, her concern for environmental justice led her to work with Kankakee River Round Table and Protecting Our Water, Environment and River (POWER), groups which were instrumental in preventing the construction of an aquifer-polluting landfill.
She spearheaded devel- opment of the Kankakee River Valley Prescription and Drug Disposal Program, which sponsors drop-off boxes for safe disposal of unused medications.
Her final act of service was to become an organ donor through Gift Of Hope.
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Joan Marie Reed
April 11, 1948 – April 11, 2013
Commentary | KankakeGazette.com | posted 6-3-2013
A memorial service was held for Joan Reed in Kankakee May 7, 2013 at the River North/Freight House Pub at 555 S. West Avenue in Kankakee. Continue reading