She was an only child growing up in Abington, Pa.
Her father is Joseph R. Daughen (investigative reporter for The Philadelphia Bulletin and Philadelphia Daily News, and author of 3 books, including the best-selling "Wreck of the Penn Central" and a biography of Frank Rizzo (“The Cop Who Would Be King”). Her mom also named Joan Daughen has been a lifelong volunteer and office worker.
Young Joan went off to Bucknell University where she graduated with a BA in economics. While attending a dance one weekend she met Robb Cadigan. Robb was also a student at Bucknell. He originally was from Maryland and moved to Philadelphia to be closer to Joan. He was an up-and-coming writer. Joan mentioned that she may have been drawn to him as her father was a writer. They married in 1989.
Fresh out of college, Joan went to work for Continental Bank in Center City Philadelphia for eight years. For a while she was a stay-at-mom after her two children, Ryan and Caroline, were born. There are also two furry children black labradoodles — Shadow and Scout.
Close to 25 years ago, they moved to the Phoenixville area (actually Kimberton). The family enjoy the slower pace of living in the country.
Joan flourishes when making a connection of people to one another. In this direction she has grown her talent and profession. Today, she is the executive director of the Phoenixville Community Educational Foundation.
The mission of the Phoenixville Community Education Foundation is to secure and provide resources that enhance the overall educational experience within the Phoenixville Area School District, including learning initiatives, preparedness programs and out of the classroom activities.
Joan is very proud of the teachers and students and the accomplishments they have achieved.
It is a very busy time in the Cadigan family life. As the family have lend their support of the opening of “Reads and Company,” a new bookshop, on May 10.
It has been two years in the planning. To obtain property in downtown Phoenixville was at the top of the list. Sure, enough one was found right in the middle of the 200 block on Bridge Street.
Jason Hafer (one-time owner of Wolfgang books) and Robb are partners. This was a long-awaited dream of theirs to open an independent bookshop in downtown Phoenixville. Seemingly a huge risk in today’s market with online purchasing of books.
When she has time, Joan enjoys taking walks, reading (mostly non-fiction) and cooking. She leans toward Italian cuisine, but cooks all different dishes.
Here is a favorite of hers.
• 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, halved and pounded thin, or 1 lb. chicken cutlets
• 1/2 cup or so flour
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• Pinch ground black pepper
• 3 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
• 3 Tbsp olive oil
• 4 Tbsp butter, divided
• 1/2 cup (or more) chicken stock or white wine
• Juice from 2 lemons (about 1/3 C)
• 1/4 cup capers, drained and rinsed
• 2 Tbsp fresh chopped Italian parsley
Spread flour on a large piece of wax paper and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken in the flour mixture to coat lightly.
Heat extra-virgin olive oil and 2Tbsp. butter in a large pan. When melted, add chicken and sauté until brown on both sides. Remove chicken from pan and put on plate (cover with foil to keep warm).
Add the broth or wine to pan and deglaze it. Use a spatula to scrape up the brown bits. Add lemon juice and capers and bring to boil. Add chicken back into the pan and simmer until cooked through. Add remaining 2Tbsp. butter to the pan and stir into sauce around chicken.
Transfer chicken to serving platter or plates and top with chopped fresh parsley. Serve with a fresh green salad.