Monica Velez is a reporter at Valley Public Radio. She started out as a print reporter covering health issues in Merced County at the Merced Sun-Star. In 2018 Monica and her colleague at the Sun-Star won a first place George F. Gruner award for breaking news coverage. She was also awarded with a first place California Newspaper Association award in 2017 for her coverage on the lack of doctors in Merced County and other health access issues.
After growing up in the Bay Area, Monica moved to Sacramento where she received a degree in journalism and creative writing from California State University, Sacramento. As a Latina and Spanish speaker, she is passionate about telling stories that touch on issues in Hispanic communities.