Haley’s story starts as a preteen when she sometimes ate alone in the school restroom to avoid being left out in the lunchroom. That was 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, which helped her 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. Girl Talk is 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. It now reaches 35,000 girls in 43 states and 6 countries.
Haley is also the author of a book called 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 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.