Joanna was born at 6:31 a.m. on November 12, 1976, to Maxwell and Bernadette Shelling. She has an older brother, Marty, and a younger brother, Alton.
Maxwell is the manager of a Chick-Fil-A restaurant, and Bernadette was a stay-at-home mom. Maxwell didn’t want his wife to work, and Bernadette was content to be a housewife.
Marty and Alton were rebellious boys and got into a lot of trouble when they were young. Joanna learned from her brothers how to take care of herself. If need be, she would fight for what she wanted, and usually she would come out the victor.
Joanna was a pushy child and tended to push things too far. She was very stubborn and could never admit when she was wrong, so she often unintentionally hurt people’s feelings with her bluntness.
Because of her strong personality, her relationship with her mother suffered. Joanna always felt that she knew what was best and disregarded any advice her mother gave her.
She had a better relationship with her father. Maxwell tended to just listen when Joanna talked to him. Joanna took this as his agreeing with her.
Joanna never aspired to go to college, so after high school she worked many odd jobs for spending money. In 2005, she settled into a job as clerk at the Hampton Inn in Oxford. During this time, she met Kurt Grubman.
Kurt worked for the Harte Agency, and he would sometimes set up potential buyers in the hotel for a couple of days while he helped them decide which of the homes he was showing them they would like to purchase.
He also had his sister and her family stay there whenever they would come to visit. On one of these occasions, Kurt asked Joanna for her number. They dated, fell in love and were married in 2008.
When Joanna found out she was pregnant, she and Kurt decided that she would quit her job and take a few years off to be a mom. The hotel told her she would be welcome back there anytime.
Kurt and Joanna became the proud parents of Isabelle on Christmas Eve 2010. They decided that Joanna would go back to work when Isabelle starts school.
Kurt and Joanna are close friends with Jeff and Elena Harte and spend many weekend nights having dinner, cookouts and card games together.
Joanna is known around town for her obnoxious taste in jewelry and eye shadow. She is adamant that her eye shadow always matches her clothes. The jewelry is always a contrasting color that is extremely bright and eye-catching.
Joanna loves to ride horses and hike. Now that Elena is pregnant, they can’t ride or hike together for a while, so instead they swim together in Joanna’s backyard, in-ground pool to stay in shape.
Their husbands spend most of their time working, so Joanna is helping Elena decorate the nursery at the Harte home.