Meals on Wheels Chicago joins in celebration of International Women’s Day today.  MOWC is strengthened by the 11 remarkable women that volunteer their leadership and talent to serve on our board of directors – we are grateful for your service.

Today we want share the story of one of these board member, Karen Tamley. Karen has been the Commissioner of the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities (MOPD) since 2005.  Under her leadership, the department had been recognized for numerous awards.  Personally, Karen was a recent recipient of the Civic Federation of Chicago and Motorola Solutions Foundation “Excellence in Public Service Award”.

Her office promotes full inclusion of people with all types of disabilities and strives to make Chicago the most accessible city in the nation.  Included in this remit, the MOPD and MOWC work together on the home meal delivery program for individuals with disabilities in Chicago.  Karen has been instrumental in the success of this program and about MOWC says,

“I am so proud for my years of board service to Meals on Wheels Chicago, carrying out our mission of alleviating hunger and food insecurity for a broad array of Chicagoans, including those with disabilities.  Today is especially important to us, knowing that more than 66% of people being served by Meals on Wheels Chicago are women.”

Karen has served on the MOWC board since 2006. In addition to MOWC, Karen serves on several other disability related boards.  She was also appointed by President Obama in 2015 to serve on the United States Access Board, which develops accessibility guidelines and standards for the built environment, transportation, communication, medical diagnostics equipment and information technology.

Advocacy is a family affair.  Her husband Kevin, her daughter Dominika, and herself recently were the co-grand marshals of the Chicago 2017 Disability Pride Parade.

Prior to joining the MOPD, Karen served in management, policy, and advocacy roles at disability organizations in Washington D.C., Denver, and Chicago.  Karen has a B.A. in Psychology from the University of California, Berkeley.

Meals on Wheels Chicago is honored to have Karen’s leadership.  Happy International Women’s Day to all!