Not many people get to turn their passion into their source of livelihood but Shekeila Bussey did. She developed a love for motorcycles and after years of teaching others to ride the bike, the former Navy instructor has become the first Black woman to open and operate a motorcycle academy in Virginia.
“Very few people get to get up every day and do what they love to do, but I’m one of them.”
Her first encounter with motorcycles was in 2007 at a Harley Davidson class in Portsmouth, Virginia and one can say it was love at first sight.
In between the first ride at the Harley Davidson class and owning her own Academy, Bussey has taken two solo trips twice across the country. Not many riders can boast of this achievement.
“[I’ve traveled] about 16,000 miles, solo, by myself. Motorcycling to me…it’s my passion. It is what drives me forward. Very few people get to get up every day and do what they love to do, but I’m one of them. This has been a labor of love for me,” Bussey told reporters.
Now the owner of the Moto Mob Riding Academy, Bussey quit her job as a government contractor to become a motorcycle instructor for the United States Navy in 2017.
Bussey is one proud Black-owned businesswoman who used her time as an instructor to acquire a fleet of 17 motorcycles. That is when she began tutoring people on the side. Her dream is to empower a new breed of riders to carry on the sport.
Although the cycling world is male-dominated, Bussey said her recently opened academy is open to everybody. She hopes her story inspires people to follow their passion and turn it into a job. She is happy to be the first Black woman to own a motorcycling academy but does not want to be the last.
“What that means to my community is when we see someone else who looks like us, doing something that we feel that has been unattainable to us. It makes it possible. It makes a difference in our community. That’s why Black-owned matters to me. I’m proud of that distinction,” Bussey said to 10Wavy.com.
The grand opening of the Moto Mob Riding Academy was earlier this month at 100 North College Drive in Franklin, Virginia, and it is signing on more cyclists.
All the cyclists must however adhere to all COVID-19 safety guidelines and bring along their eye protection, helmet, long sleeves, and over the ankle-foot wear because these items are bound to touch the skin and Bussey wants to do her part in reducing the spread of the coronavirus.