Monique O'Grady, an Arlington mother of three, is a local activist and broadcast journalist-turned-public relations (PR) professional. Monique has been an Arlington Public Schools parent for 19 years at five schools - the Arlington Career Center Preschool Program, Drew Model School, Thomas Jefferson Middle School, Gunston Middle School, and Washington-Lee High School.
ADVOCATING FOR ARLINGTON
Monique began serving on the Arlington School Board in 2018. She has a proven track record of bringing people together and creating solutions. Monique is a passionate 25-year Arlington resident, 19-year APS parent, longtime community advocate, and communications professional. She and her husband Mike have three children: Mikey is a 7th grader at Gunston Middle School and two girls, Brittany and Caitlin who are APS graduates. Her children have attended the Arlington Career Center preschool, Drew Model School, Thomas Jefferson Middle School, Gunston Middle School and Washington-Lee High School.
Monique has worked inside schools and across the APS system to bring positive change for students, teachers and the greater community. Her volunteer service, honors and appointed positions include:
APS South Arlington Boundary Committee, APS Early Childhood Advisory Committee, APS South Arlington Working Group, APS New Elementary School at Thomas Jefferson Building Level Planning Committee, APS Strategic Planning Committee, and APS Multi-Site Committee for School Facilities
Co-chair of the 2016 School Bond Campaign
Member of the Arlington Arts Commission
Co-founder of the Arlington Montessori Action Committee (AMAC)
Recipient of the APS Honored Citizen award (from the Arlington School Board)
Recognized by her church and neighborhood for her volunteer efforts.
ARLINGTON COMMUNITY LEADER
A decade ago Monique O'Grady co-founded the Arlington Montessori Action Committee, an organization supporting public and private Montessori education in Arlington.
Additionally, Monique has served the Arlington Community as a member of the Arlington Arts Commission, helped organize and emceed the Arlington Neighborhood Parades, and emceed the Arlington 4th of July festivities at Long Bridge Park. She is a lector at Our Lady Queen of Peace Church and is a longtime emcee of its Martin Luther King Day program.
Monique has been honored to emcee an Arlington NAACP event and a National Park Service multi-cultural wedding at the historic Arlington House. She also has helped raise money for the Bonder and Amanda Johnson Community Development Corporation during its Arlington Dancing with the Stars competition.
Monique at Arlington's Dancing with the Stars
Photo: Deb Kolt Sun Gazette
School Bond co-chairs Peter Fallon and Monique O’Grady led the effort for the bond’s approval. Arlington voters approved $138.83 million for School Bonds in 2016
SCHOOL LEADER AND VOLUNTEER
Throughout Monique’s 19 years as an APS parent she has been deeply involved in the schools providing leadership and support to the teachers, administration and students. Highlights from her years of volunteering are:
Monique has served as the chair of the Drew Model School Association and the executive committee of the Drew Model PTA. She is a current and previous member of Drew's School Advisory Committee and has a long history of volunteering at Drew.
As a Thomas Jefferson parent Monique volunteered for band activities and school plays, participated in career day, and represented the Arlington Heights neighborhood during a visit by an International Baccalaureate committee considering whether to grant Jefferson its current Middle Year IB Program status.
As a Washington-Lee parent Monique helped create a PTA ad hoc committee to review a school policy that allowed only seniors to meet with visiting college admissions representatives. Following appropriate research and a committee report, Washington-Lee changed its policy to allow more students access to college recruiters.
Monique holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Broadcast Journalism, with a minor in Business, from American University. She worked as a television reporter in Lafayette, Indiana and New Orleans, Louisiana before opening a Washington Bureau for three TV stations in the Midwest, where she subsequently served as bureau chief. During her nine-year tenure as bureau chief, Monique covered three presidents and many members of Congress. She went on to become the Capitol Hill Correspondent for Black Entertainment Television, where she interviewed First Lady Laura Bush, then-Senator Barack Obama, and many cabinet- level officials.
Monique now works as a PR professional, and has experience in the non-profit arena promoting Rosslyn's business community, energy efficiency, aging issues, and national parks.
Monique emceeing the Arlington 4th of July festivities
at Long Bridge Park