On June 14, 2016, CSF/CJSF lost a very dear CSF/CJSF State Board member to cancer. Joanna DiGiovanna was a teacher in the Lancaster Unified School District for 38 years until her retirement in 2008. During her years as a teacher, she was the CJSF adviser at Piute Middle School. She also served on the CSF/CJSF State Board of Directors from 2007, first as a CJSF Vice President for the South Central region, then as CJSF Registrar from 2015, a position she held until her passing. Her passion for the organization, particularly to CJSF, was evident in her participation and in her dedication to board activities even through the challenges she experienced with her health.
As a volunteer board member and official photographer for the annual conferences, she captured the highlights of the events and kept albums of the photos, which were often posted on the website. She took the initiative to offer workshops in the local Lancaster community and at statewide conferences, always hoping to guide CJSF advisers to be strong, informed leaders who would encourage their students to achieve academically and perform community service. She worked diligently to help advisers keep their charters up to date and kept meticulous records of board meetings, and always made thoughtful, valuable contributions on issues under discussion during our meetings.
Her fierce determination to continue with her activities despite the obstacles of her illness were an inspiration for all of us on the State Board and to those around her. In addition to her involvement with CSF/CJSF during her retirement, she enjoyed traveling and spending time with her family. She will be missed greatly.
In her memory, CSF/CJSF has established a CJSF 50th Anniversary DiGiovanna Memorial Award to be presented to a CJSF student in 2017, which marks the 50th birthday of CJSF. This award will be funded by donations, which we will accept in any amount and which can be sent to CSF/CJSF at its new address:
1750 Prairie City Road, Ste 130-798
Folsom, CA 95630-9579
The award recipient will be the winner of an essay contest, whose name will be announced in the spring of 2017. More details will be forthcoming.