2022 20 in their Twenties: Haley Bougher

(IBJ photo/Eric Learned)

Vice President, Women4Change Indiana

Haley Bougher spent the first summer of college in a hospital compound in a rural farming village in Chhattisgarh, India. There, she saw a young woman ask a doctor for her tubes to be tied after delivering her fourth child. The procedure would be allowed only with the woman’s husband’s permission, according to Bougher. He said “no” because the woman had not yet given birth to a son. That “put me on a path toward advocacy,” Bougher says. Now, as vice president of Women4Change Indiana, a grassroots organization that aims to promote the health, safety and respect of all Hoosiers, Bougher oversees many day-to-day operations, including educational programming, advocacy efforts and the organization’s internship program. Before joining the organization, she served a year with the AmeriCorps Immigrant & Refugee Service Corps and as the program assistant at Butler’s Desmond Tutu Center for Peace, Reconciliation & Global Justice.

Proud moment in your career?
In March 2020, she planned an event at the Statehouse that aimed to raise awareness about sexual assault and to encourage lawmakers to pass consent legislation. “Leading up to the event, … I sat on our office floor for hours with an intern sorting 1,500 postcards by county. I delivered copies to every legislator, so they knew they had constituents who were survivors of sexual assault. After three years of advocacy from Women4Change, during the 2022 legislative session, the Legislature passed House Bill 1079, giving Indiana a legal definition of consent.”

What have you learned about yourself since you joined the workforce? “I’ve learned how much I appreciate community. I think Indy is magical for creating spaces for communities to grow.”

Where do you see yourself in 10 years? “Still in advocacy!”

Favorite social media platform: Instagram

Favorite podcast: “All Things Considered”  

Netflix recommendation: “Call the Midwife”

Go-to coffee order: iced quad shot w/coconut milk

Morning person or night owl? morning person•

Check out more 20 in their Twenties honorees.

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