Mistress Joanne, the now-retired Mistress of IML, was closely involved with running International Mr. Leather for ten years. Active in the pansexual leather community, Mistress Joanne presents workshops/seminars, judges leather contests, and volunteered with the Leather Archives and Museum. She co-produces Inside Leather History: A Fireside Chat, a series of programs that seeks to capture the memories and experiences of our community leaders and to give us the opportunity to ask questions.
In 1999, Mistress Joanne was chosen Pantheon of Leather's 1999 Woman of the Year; in 2010, she was nominated for two Pantheon of Leather awards: Great Lakes Regional and Woman of the Year. In May, 2010 she was one of three recipients of the LRA's second Hans Blanken Founders Award, named in honor of the founder of the original Leather Rose, one of Chicago's oldest dungeon clubs. The award is given to individuals who have not only shown outstanding support and service to LRA, but to the Chicago community as well.
She served on the Board of Chicago Hellfire Club's McAdory Fund, the first female to hold any CHC-related position, and was named an official Friend of the Club (second female and ONLY leatherwoman so honored in the all-male club's 36+ year history). She is also a Friend of the Chicago Leather Club. In June, 2009, she was "birthed" into Mama's Family (Mama Sandy of San Francisco) as "Mama's Mistress of IML." Mistress Joanne assists leathermen and women who enter a leather/fetish contest and mentors titleholders during their pursuit of a regional, national or international contest title (to help them achieve their personal best). As an Ordained Clergy Person by the Church of Spiritual Humanism, Mistress Joanne is having grand fun designing ceremonies and legally performing marriages and commitment ceremonies, both kinky and vanilla!