The Town of Erie is pleased to welcome Melissa Wiley in the position of Deputy Town Administrator. Melissa’s first day with the Town was Monday, May 3.
Melissa rose to the top of a competitive application process which included more than 100 very impressive candidates. She comes to the Town from the City and County of Denver where she was working as Director of Peak Academy, the nationally recognized innovation and analytics program for local government (and other organizations). Peak Academy trains on and leads employees through process improvement, strategic planning, change management, innovation, data-based decision making, and equity outcomes. Melissa was a founding member of the program, which has saved Denver taxpayers more than 40 million dollars to date. She has worked with hundreds of local governments around the United States on leading innovative and effective local government.
“Melissa’s experience leading innovation and change at a large, neighboring municipality was crucial to our decision to offer her the position,” said Town Administrator Malcolm Fleming. “Her technical expertise, passion for public service, and caring personality make her a great fit on our leadership team.”
Prior to her Denver experience, Melissa served as Director of Policy and Communication for the Colorado Association for School-Based Health Care, Assistant to the Director for the Drexel University Department of International Studies, and Research Assistant for the U.S. Economic Advisor to Northern Ireland. Melissa holds a BA from the University of Colorado where she graduated Summa Cum Laude and was recognized for her extensive research on the conflict in Northern Ireland. She holds an MPA from the University of Pennsylvania where she studied with the Fels and Wharton schools and completed internships with the U.S. Department of State and the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
Melissa is the granddaughter of a Japanese immigrant. While helping her grandmother settle into the United States culture, Melissa developed a deep appreciation for the challenges that come with navigating complex government processes with language and cultural barriers. These experiences inspired her to improve the government experience for all people. In her spare time, Melissa runs interactive sessions for kids on overcoming bullying through storytelling. She is currently writing a memoir about her experience being attacked by dogs as a young child and the subsequent bullying and judgement that followed. Her work was recently published in a literary journal. Melissa started the Denver Animal Shelter’s Jog-a-Dog volunteer program and is active with Colorado Women Leading Government.
“My life’s mission is to restore resident faith in public service. I am thrilled to join the Town of Erie and look forward to leading in this vibrant and beautiful community. I am dedicated to efficient, effective, and compassionate local government,” said new Deputy Town Administrator Melissa Wiley.
Melissa will supervise nearly half of the Town’s department directors and will be responsible for various projects including investigating the potential for the Town to place Home Rule on the ballot, the Town’s plans to return to in-person services post-pandemic, and more.