Joanna has been working as a producer with Kartemquin since 2003. In late 2008, she left the position of Director of Development for the company to pursue filmmaking full time. She is currently developing a new film with Kartemquin on photographer Rick Guidotti, who left behind the world of fashion photography to use his lens to challenge the way we see beauty by photographing individuals with genetic conditions.
Joanna is also producing Prisoner of Her Past, the story of Chicago Tribune journalist Howard Reich's attempt to uncover his mother’s tragic Holocaust childhood in order to understand why she is reliving it, 60 years later; and A Good Man, a feature-length co-production with Kartemquin, the Ravinia Festival, Media Process Group and American Masters, following the creation of a major dance piece by the choreographer Bill T. Jones on Abraham Lincoln to premiere at Ravinia in September of 2009.
Joanna produced and directed In the Family, her personal story of testing positive for the hereditary "breast cancer" gene and an exploration into the psychological, social, legal and ethical challenges surrounding predictive genetic testing. The film premiered at Silverdocs in 2008, was broadcast nationally on PBS' P.O.V. the same year and was a finalist for the NIHCM Foundation’s Health Care Radio and Television Journalism Award.
Before coming to Kartemquin, Joanna co-produced a film on war photographer Robert Capa for the American Masters series at WNET in New York. Robert Capa in Love and War was broadcast on PBS and the BBC, premiered at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival and was the presenting film for the 2003 Emmy award for Outstanding Nonfiction Series.
Prior to her role on the Capa project, Joanna worked for American Masters for three years contributing to numerous films including Juilliard, Ella Fitzgerald: Something to Live For and Joe Papp: In Six Acts. Joanna also worked to help research and develop a 6-part series on the American novel, funded in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities. Joanna received a Master’s degree in Science and Environmental Journalism from New York University and a Bachelor’s degree in English from Northwestern University.
She has written for several publications including Audubon Magazine, The Artful Mind, The Berkshire Record and Humanities. Prior to her work in production, Joanna served as an Americorps volunteer, implementing project-based environmental curricula in the San Francisco Public School System.
Joanna is currently an adjunct professor at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism.