Joanne Cisco Olszewski was born and grew up in Philadelphia and grew up and went to school in Springfield Township, Montgomery County. She relocated to Maryland and while a resident for fifteen years, Joanne served as administrative aide to a Maryland State Senator. She was also very active with the Maryland Division of the American Cancer Society, and served as ACS state secretary 1973-74 and public education volunteer of the year in 1975. A cured cancer patient, she chaired Maryland’s first “Cured Cancer Congress” program committee in 1983.
In the 1990’s Joanne founded the Montgomery County Democratic “Warrior Women,” an effort to empower the local Democratic committee women to be a unified force to help elect Democrats. Women all across the county began wearing a ubiquitous yellow “Democratic Warrior Women” button. The “Warrior Women” campaign took off and continues to support candidates for all levels of office.
Joanne has worked to get Democrats elected at all levels, and has served in many different roles:
• Montgomery County chair for Harris Wofford’s successful special election bid for United States Senate, 1991
• One of the twenty-one electors of the Pennsylvania Electoral College, 1996
• Chair, Congressman Joe Hoeffel’s successful election to the 13th Congressional District seat, 1998
• Field Director on Congressman Joe Hoeffel’s congressional staff, 1999 and 2000
• Delegate to the Democratic National Convention, 1996, 2000, 2004
• Long-time committee member
• Eighteen-year member of Pennsylvania State Committee
• First Vice Chair of MCDC for 18 years
• Jury Commissioner for 10 years.
Joanne has been married to Bernie Olszewski for 55 years and is the mother of three daughters. In her community, she serves as an officer of The Friends of Hillcrest Pond at Cisco Park, a conservation group founded by her late father, James A. Cisco. She is also a member of the Regional Association of Campania, an Italian Heritage and Cultural Group.