Wiley statue evokes warm memories on hot day in Morristown

Thank you to our friends at MorristownGreen for their coverage of the Steve Wiley statue unveiling on Satrday, July 10th. It is our privilege to have helped steward this gift in tribute of a true community trailblazer.


From the MorristownGreen:

Channeling his late mentor, Sendell led a Community Foundation of New Jersey campaign that raised $140,000 for the life-sized bronze likeness of Wiley, a lawyer, businessman, politician, philanthropist and poet who died in 2015 at age 86.

The statue now welcomes visitors to the library wing Wiley helped build. Across the street is the Mayo Performing Arts Center, which he helped rescue from ruin when it was the Community Theatre. It’s a short walk from the historic Morristown Green. Wiley raised nearly $5 million to preserve that, too.

“When you know this community, you know Steve Wiley, because he’s everywhere,” said Mackey Pendergrast, superintendent of the Morris School District.

Fifty years ago, Wiley, won a landmark state Supreme Court case that merged Morristown and Morris Township schools. The case aimed to avert white flight and spare Morristown the civil unrest that plagued other urban centers in the 1960s and ’70s.