Joan  Joseph's Memorial

Joan Joseph
(1945 - 2009)


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General Details

Name: Mrs Joan Joseph
Gender: Female
Age: 64 years old
Lived: Sunday, 3 June 1945 - Wednesday, 23 September 2009

My Story

NOTE: Photos courtesy of Palm Beach County Democratic Party Photo Historian Rick Neuhoff. More of his work may be found here:

The following was posted at the Palm Beach Post - by George Bennett | September 23rd, 2009:

Democratic organizer Joan Joseph, 1945-2009

Joan Joseph, a Jupiter resident who was a key political operative for candidates from Barack Obama to West Palm Beach Mayor Lois Frankel, died early today of cancer.

Mrs. Joseph, 64, was a go-to figure for Democratic candidates seeking to build a grass-roots organization in Florida. She was a paid staffer in Palm Beach County for Al Gore’s 2000 presidential campaign, then was the statewide coordinator of volunteers for John Kerry’s 2004 campaign.

When Barack Obama launched his presidential bid in early 2007 as a decided underdog, Mrs. Joseph was a key early organizer in Florida.

“She was one of the first people that we went to for Obama” in Florida, said Kirk Wagar, who was the Obama campaign’s Florida finance chairman. Obama’s first major Florida event, a March 2007 “low-dollar” fund-raiser that drew about 1,000 people to the Palm Beach County Convention Center, was largely put together by Mrs. Joseph, Wagar said.

“I don’t know that there were many people more important than her…in the whole state,” Wagar said.

Mrs. Joseph was rewarded for her efforts by being tapped by the Obama campaign as one of Florida’s 27 Electoral College members.

“When we named those people, we wanted people who really made a meaningful difference,” said Steve Schale, who was the Obama campaign’s Florida director.

Schale described Mrs. Joseph as an “indispensable” figure in Florida. Aside from presidential campaigns, Mrs. Joseph also played a key statewide role in Rod Smith’s 2006 bid for governor and was a top adviser for Frankel’s 2003 and 2007 mayoral campaigns.

“She was really one of the dearest people I’ve ever known. She was certainly a big part of my life,” Frankel said this morning.

“Grass-roots organizing is what she was known for. She was also one of the smartest political minds in Florida,” said Eric Jotkoff, who worked with Mrs. Joseph on three campaigns and is now spokesman for the Florida Democratic Party.

Jotkoff attributed Mrs. Joseph’s success to “her true understanding of politics and her incredible network of people, just how warm and great a person she was — that’s why so many people were loyal to her.”

Mrs. Joseph grew up in New York and earned a Master’s degree in social work from Rutgers University. She held jobs working the mentally disabled and elderly and with the North Shore Animal League in New York. She also worked on political campaigns in the Empire State, including two of Mario Cuomo’s gubernatorial runs and former President Jimmy Carter’s 1980 reelection bid.

“Jimmy Carter actually called our house and asked her to work on the campaign,” recalled Stu Joseph, her husband of 39 years.
In addition to her husband, Mrs. Joseph is survived by twin daughters and three grandchildren. A funeral is planned for Friday at 10 a.m. at the Aycock Funeral Home in Jupiter.

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Memory Memorial Tribute
From: isabelkel
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I was unaware that Joan passed away and I am so saddened by her passing. I worked for Joan for 3 years in New York at...
Song Dedication Memorial Tribute
From: Aggie
Song Name: I Turn To You
Artist: Christina Aguilera
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Joanie, You were always on my side, shielding me from the storms. For all th...
Heart Memorial Tribute
From: Aggie
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My beautiful sister. I love you sooo much. I will never foreget all the good timeswe had. I am so glad I saw you last...
Comment Memorial Tribute
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Dear Friend: Rest in peace. I will never forget all the fun we had trying to save the world from itself.
Comment Memorial Tribute
From: fidell
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Joan, your commitment to working tirelessly, when you believed in supporting a candidate, made you my kind of woman! ...
Song Dedication Memorial Tribute
From: LindaMB
Song Name: The Prayer
Artist: Celine Dion and A...
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Flower Memorial Tribute
From: MJR
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My dearest i will miss you! You were my guiding light and my inspiration and my idol and my favorite lunc...
Memory Memorial Tribute
From: JoshK
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Joan Josephs, you will be dearly missed. You were always a source of encouragement and a unique treasure. The spi...
Song Dedication Memorial Tribute
From: LindaMB
Song Name: Shower the People
Artist: James Taylor
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Song Dedication Memorial Tribute
From: LindaMB
Song Name: The Secret of Life
Artist: James Taylor
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Comment Memorial Tribute
From: barbicane
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Goodbye, Joan. We will all miss your passion and dedication to the Democratic cause. You taught us how to fight the...


Spouse's Name: Stu Joseph
Country of Birth: USA
City of Residence: Jupiter, Florida
Marital Status: Married


Other Interests:
Democratic Party Politics


Place of Passing: Jupiter Medical Center
Date of Passing: 23 September 2009
Funeral Location: Aycock Funeral Home, 1112 Military Trail, Jupiter, FL, 10 AM
Funeral Date: 25 September 2009

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