Fellowship

Fellowship
Feb 01, 2018
Joanne Bollinger
Fellowship

Joanne Shea Bollinger  is a Board member of WISE-Women’s Initiatives that Strengthen and Empower, a non-profit born in Maine in 2005 to move vulnerable women and children in western Zambia to self-sustaining lives. Her first trip to the project in 2013, intended as a one-time immersion experience in a small African town, inspired her to become involved in a deeper way. She now travels to Zambia at least once a year to advise, collaborate and learn from the local women who do the actual work on the ground. Much of her time in the US is focused on fundraising, sharing the WISE story around the country. Her passion is WISE’s scholarship program which currently supports 150 secondary students who would have no options for school beyond 7th grade, especially young girls at risk of early marriage. A special connection has been forged with the Nkwazi Rotary Club in Lusaka, Zambia’s capital: a trip to Zambia must include a visit with them! Joanne grew up in Auburn (EL ’63), never expecting to return. Following a career in music, teaching in Camden, Woolwich, Brunswick and singing throughout New England, she spent 12 years in Illinois with her second husband. Eventually she returned to Maine with him and following his death from Alzheimer’s Disease, the circle to Auburn was closed in 2014, when Joanne came “home” to be near her son and his wife.