Joanne Martin began her career with the American Bar family in 1973. She started at the American Bar Association in the editorial department and also worked with the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar. She moved to the American Bar Foundation in 1981 and served as the Assistant Director and then the Associate Director. During her tenure at the Foundation her research interests included access to justice, legal needs, and legal education. She and colleague Stephen Daniels coauthored two books, Tort Reform, Plaintiffs Lawyers, and Access to Justice and Civil Juries and the Politics of Reform, and over 30 articles on their research on jury verdicts and plaintiffs lawyers. Ms. Martin also had the privilege of working with Byrant Garth on legal education topics.
While at the ABF, she also worked with many ABA groups doing surveys on judges, merit selection, the teaching of property law, and membership. Ms. Martin became a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation in 1985 and a Life Fellow in 1995 and had the honor of making numerous presentations to state Fellows meetings. Ms. Martin finished her American Bar family career at the at the American Bar Endowment, ultimately serving as its Executive Director.
Ms. Martin is a member of the American Law Institute, the American Bar Association, the Illinois Bar Association, and the Chicago Bar Association.