Member Biography

Jeanette Fichman Reibman 


Indiana University of Bloomington

Sessions Office Position District Party
1967       18 Democrat
1968       18 Democrat
1969       18 Democrat
1970       18 Democrat
1971       18 Democrat
1972       18 Democrat
1973       18 Democrat
1974       18 Democrat
1975       18 Democrat
1976       18 Democrat
1977       18 Democrat
1978       18 Democrat
1979       18 Democrat
1980       18 Democrat
1981       18 Democrat
1982       18 Democrat
1983       18 Democrat
1984       18 Democrat
1985       18 Democrat
1986       18 Democrat
1987       18 Democrat
1988       18 Democrat
1989       18 Democrat
1990       18 Democrat
1991     Minority Caucus Administrator 18 Democrat
1992     Minority Caucus Administrator 18 Democrat
1993     Majority Caucus Administrator 18 Democrat
1994     Majority Caucus Administrator 18 Democrat


08/18/1915 - 03/11/2006

Jeanette Lillian Fichman Reibman (D18) Monroe (Part) and Northampton Counties 1969-1992 (D18) Monroe (Part) and Northampton (Part) Counties 1993-1994

Early Life:

Jeanette Lillian Fichman Reibman, born August 18, 1915, Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana; daughter of Meir and Pearl Swartz Fichman; political science, Hunter College, New York, New York, A.B., 1937; Indiana University Law School-Bloomington, Legum Baccalaureus (Bachelor of Laws), LL.B., 1940; LL. D, Lafayette College, Easton, Pennsylvania, 1969; married, Nathan L. Reibman, 1943, sons, Joseph M. Reibman, Judge Edward D. Reibman, Doctor James E. Reibman; attorney, United States War Department, 1940-1942; attorney, United States War Production Board, 1942-1944; elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania State House of Representatives, 1955-1956 term, unsuccessful reelection campaign, 1956; elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania State House of Representatives, 1959-1966, not a candidate for reelection, 1967 term; elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania State Senate, 1969-1994, elected, Minority Caucus Administrator, 1991-1992, Senate Majority Caucus Administrator, 1993-1994; unsuccessful campaign, United State Senate, 1976; died, March 11, 2006, Allentown, Lehigh County, Pennsylvania; interment, Easton Cemetery, Easton, Lehigh County, Pennsylvania.

Awards and Organizations:

Member, Education Commission of the States; Sigma Delta Tau; Delta Kappa Gamma; Phi Delta Kappa and Order of the Eastern Star. 

Distinguished Daughter of Pennsylvania Award and medal, Governor of Pennsylvania, 1968; Hunter College Alumni Hall of Fame, 1974; Temple Covenant of Peace, Easton, and Hadassah, receiving the Myrtle Wreath Award, 1976; Public Service Award from the Pennsylvania Psychological Association, 1977; Jerusalem City of Peace Award, Government of Israel, 1977; Indiana University Maurer School of Law Academy of Alumni Fellows, 1993. Received honorary degrees, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, Wilson College, Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, Cedar Crest College, Allentown, Pennsylvania, Moravian College, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

Trustee emerita, Lafayette College; board member, Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency; Pennsylvania Council on Arts, Camp Hill Schools; member, board, Forks of the Delaware United Fund; Northampton County Family Counseling Service; Lehigh Valley Hospital Planning Commission; Delaware Area Council, Boy Scouts of America, received Distinguished Citizen Award, Minsi Trail Council; Pennsylvania Library Association; board of trustees Lafayette College; Saint Luke’s Hospital;  Pennsylvania Jewish Coalition.

Pennsylvania Politics:

Elected Democrat, Pennsylvania State House of Representatives, 1955-1956, unsuccessful reelection campaign, 1956.

Elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania State House of Representatives, 1959-1966, not a candidate for reelection, 1967 term.

Elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania State Senate, 18th district, Monroe (Part) and Northampton Counties, 1969-1992, Democrat, Pennsylvania State Senate, 18th district, Monroe (Part) and Northampton (Part) Counties, 1993-1994, elected, Minority Caucus Administrator, 1991-1992; Majority Caucus Administrator, 1993-1994; Senate Education Committee Chairwoman, 1970-1980; appointed, Local Government Commission, 1967-1974, chairwoman, Local Government Commission, 1971-1974; appointed, board, Pennsylvania Higher Educational Assistance Agency (PHEAA), 1981-1992; appointed, Pennsylvania Commission for Women, 1981-1992; appointed, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, 1981-1992; left office November 30, 1994. First female Democratic member elected, Pennsylvania State Senate, first woman elected, Democratic Leadership, Minority Caucus Administrator, 1991.

Unsuccessful campaign, United State Senate, 1976.

Pennsylvania State House of Representatives Biography:

Official Website - PA House Archives Official Website (


Jeanette Reibman Papers (1955-1998), Special Collections and College Archives, Skillman Library, Lafayette College, Easton, Pennsylvania.

Biographical Sketch – Jeanette Reibman Papers: 1955-1998 (

Named after, administration building, campus of Stroudsburg University, 1972; early childhood learning center, Northampton Community College, 1992.

Pennsylvania Governor Edward Rendell said of her, “She was one of the first women to serve in the Pennsylvania Senate and brought dignity, class, and grace to Harrisburg. She had a tireless work ethic and a dedication to the people of the Lehigh Valley.”


Cox, Harold. "Senate Members "R""Wilkes University Election Statistics Project. Wilkes University. 

Political pioneer Jeanette Reibman dies ** The longtime Easton resident was a “giant of Pennsylvania politics.’ She spent 38 years in the Legislature, championing education. – The Morning Call (

Morning Call (Allentown, Pennsylvania) March 12, 2006

Jeanette Lillian Fichman Reibman (1915-2006) - Find a Grave Memorial