JoAnn Mar is an award-winning journalist and radio documentary producer. She has worked in public radio for many years and recently celebrated her 30th anniversary at KALW. Her feature reports and documentaries have been broadcast on NPR, Voice of America, The Charles Osgood File, Pacifica Radio, and AARP’s series Prime Time Radio. Her documentary work has covered topics such as prisons, death and dying, women’s issues, the
plight of immigrants, and public education.
Mar’s awards include the prestigious George Polk award in 2006 for investigative reporting on prison privatization. She was the recipient of a 2007 media fellowship from the Open Society Institute and produced the award-winning documentary Prisons in Crisis: A State of Emergency in California, which helped bring attention to prison overcrowding and the abysmal state of health care for prisoners.
Mar reported on death and dying nearly twenty years ago, at a time when few people were paying attention to issues around the end of life. The recent death of her mother inspired her to revisit this topic. Thanks to a fellowship grant from The Association of Health Care Journalists and The Commonwealth Fund, Mar spent the past year producing a series of reports on care at the end of life and how much improvement there’s been in the last twenty years.