When Ms. Monica Wiley was nine years old, a drunk semi-truck driver hit her family’s vehicle, causing them to plunge over a 150 ft. bridge. Her entire family died, making her the only survivor of this tragedy. She was left with an incomplete spinal cord injury, and was told that she would be paraplegic for the rest of her life. However, she beat the odds of her diagnosis and was able to begin rehabilitation. Now, she is able to walk with a cane. The Children’s Hospital of Richmond, Virginia calls her the “Miracle Child.”
Today, Ms. Wiley helps prove what is possible for truck crash survivors and for those diagnosed with spinal cord injuries. She has worked for several notable groups, ranging from state governmental offices to federal organizations dedicated to protecting and advancing the rights of people with disabilities and other underrepresented communities.
Ms. Wiley served as a Field Organizer for President Obama’s grassroots project Organizing for America in the Greater Richmond area, and was the was the only organizer with a disability. She was selected as the Virginia Liaison on Disability to the White House Disability Group under the Obama-Biden administration. She was appointed by former Governor of Virginia Terry McAuliffe as a Disability Advisor on Community Integration. She is also the co-founder of the Disability Issues Caucus Constituency Organization for the Democratic Party of Virginia. In 2017, Ms. Wiley was asked to serve on the National Disability Council under the leadership of former Congressman Tony Coelho, author of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). She was the only African-American woman elected as an officer to this council.
Simply put, Ms. Monica Wiley is an inspiration to all, and we are grateful to have her as part of the Truck Safety Coalition family.