Haley Kilpatrick 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 be a part of the solution and to start Girl Talk in 2002 at the age of 15. Today it is an organization that now reaches 35,000 middle school girls in 43 states and 6 countries and that aspires to reach many more.
Kilpatrick knows from both personal experience and from ten years 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 uniqueness 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, 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. The Drama Years is published by Simon & Schuster and was just released on April 3rd and on its third print run! Haley's hope is that, by better understanding the 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.
Kilpatrick 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 USA Today.
Kilpatrick enjoys traveling, speaking, volunteering, and inspiring others to discover their passions through community service. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia.