Haley Kilpatrick’s mission is to influence a generation of authentic women who engage one another and their communities with kindness, humility, and respect. She is a social entrepreneur, author, and speaker who empowers middle and high school girls by providing access to peer mentoring, leadership opportunities, and community service.
She believes that the basis for relationships among young girls can and should be kindness, respect, and compassion. It is her mission to influence a generation of women who interact with one another on these bases, and whose self-esteem, leadership, and commitment to giving back set an example for the generations of women who follow them. She believes that three keys to the development of confident young females are finding a passion – something to do that inspires you, having a peer mentor – someone to look up to and go to as needed, and something to stand for – a cause outside of self to believe in and actively support. Girl Talk is the embodiment of these beliefs in action.
Haley Kilpatrick is an author, speaker, and Founder and Executive Director the national nonprofit organization, Girl Talk™. Inspired by her own middle school experience, Haley’s work aims to empower middle and high school girls through peer mentoring, leadership opportunities, and community service. Haley’s dedication to helping young girls inspired her to write The Drama Years, an urgently needed and insightful guidebook for parents and educators struggling to help girls navigate the often-difficult transition into adolescence.
Haley has been named one of Glamour Magazine’s “20 Young Women Changing the World Now,” the Huffington Post’s “Greatest Woman of the Day,” and People Magazine’s “All-Star Among Us,” among many other honors. She has been featured on NBC’s Today Show, NBC Nightly News, CNN, HLN, and TBS.
Haley enjoys traveling, speaking, volunteering, and inspiring others to discover their passions through community service. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia.
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Haley is the founder and Executive Director of Girl Talk, a national nonprofit organization through which high school girls mentor middle school girls to help deal with the trials and triumphs of the “tween” and early teen years. She is also a former preteen who remembers occasions when she ate alone in the school restroom to avoid being left out in the lunchroom, until she found a source of confidence and hope in an older high school girl who helped her to understand that she was not alone, and inspired her to get through a difficult and all too familiar middle school girl experience. It was this experience that inspired her to start Girl Talk in 2002 at the age of 15, and to build it into an organization that has reached 40,000 girls in 34 states and 7 countries and that aspires to reach many more.
Haley knows from both personal experience and from experience in the trenches with today’s preteens that the issues these girls face are both challenging and universal, and that they can be overcome to reveal the wonderful potential and unique beauty of every young girl. It is this knowledge that inspired Haley to give the girls themselves a voice in her book, The Drama Years: Real Girls Talk about Surviving Middle School—Bullies, Brands, Body Image and More (2012, Free Press), which serves as a guidebook for parents, teachers and anyone else who works with middle school girls on helping them weather these challenging developmental years. Haley’s hope is that, by better understanding the landscape and perspective of girls this age, the adults in their lives can support their development into kind, confident, and compassionate young women whose self-esteem and leadership skills strengthen not only their own futures, but the futures of the communities in which they live and the people they influence.
Haley graduated in 2007 with a Bachelor of Science in Communication from Kennesaw State University. She spends most of her time dedicated to the growth and expansion of Girl Talk, which provides its curriculum and resources at no cost, and which Haley seeks to make accessible to all middle school girls.
When she is not working at the Girl Talk headquarters in Atlanta, she travels the country speaking and motivating youth, teachers and administrators on the importance of mentoring, leadership and giving back. In her spare time, Haley enjoys traveling, spending time with her friends and family, volunteering, and inspiring others to discover their passions through community service.