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In Memory of Joan 

In 2012, Joan Hanson (McFarlane) lost a courageous battle with cancer at just 50 years old. Joan provided inspiration as a wife and mother of two daughters, in addition to committing endless support and compassion to the many children she encountered every day.  Over the course of her teaching career Joan taught at Cherokee Middle School, Thoreau Elementary, Chavez Elementary and Huegel Elementary schools. She taught children lessons that go far beyond the classroom and was awarded the Crystal Apple Award by Channel 15 as an outstanding educator in May 2012.


Joan inspired positive behaviors in children through physical fitness. Integral to the foundation of a healthy, active lifestyle, youth sport experiences provide a source of recreation, improve health and fitness, and offer experiences in teamwork, cooperation, leadership, discipline, and confidence.Through the Joan Hanson Foundation, Joan’s love for teaching children positive behaviors through physical fitness will live on forever.


Established in 2014, the Joan Hanson Foundation is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization offering youth sport assistance in Madison, Wisconsin and surrounding areas. We are committed to enhancing the character and health of economically disadvantaged children through the positive experience of sports. 

Our Mission

Empower children in the Madison area to lead healthy and active lives through sports, regardless of whether or not they can afford it. The Joan Hanson Foundation dedicated to increasing opportunities for Madison Area youth to participate in sporting and wellness activities. Through the Joan Hanson Foundation, we have been able to carry on Joan's love for teaching children positive behaviors through physical fitness!

What We Do

To make sure no child is deprived of the opportunity to participate in sports, we will provide financial assistance to these young athletes by granting sport and camp scholarships to cover registration, equipment, and transportation costs. In addition, at this time we are identifying partnerships with Madison-area organizations who are operating with similar missions to give back to. 

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Joan Hanson Foundation

NBC 15 Interview

May 27, 2016

Joan Hanson Foundation
NBC 15 Interview
April 24, 2015
2012 NBC15 Crystal Apple Teacher Award
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