Jill McElya is Founder and President of Invisible Girl Project. Before founding IGP, she spent nearly ten years practicing law, in various roles—as a prosecuting attorney, a criminal defense attorney, and a human rights advocate. Jill received a B.A. in English from William Jewell College and her J.D. from the University of Missouri, Kansas-City, School of Law.
In January 2008, she moved to India to serve as the Deputy Director and Director of the Legal Department for the Chennai field office of an international human rights organization. In this capacity, she and her staff of Indian lawyers worked to rescue victims of bonded labor (slavery) and hold their perpetrators accountable through the public justice system. During that time, she had the privilege of working with Indian government officials, and she participated in training efforts for various level officials.
While living in India for two years, Jill and her husband, Brad learned of the practice of female gendercide (the systematic killing of females) and founded Invisible Girl Project (IGP). Their goal was (and remains) to come alongside Indian individuals and entities to help them in their efforts to fight gendercide. Jill has spoken extensively on the issue across the US, including testifying before Congress on the subject of “India’s Missing Girls.”
Jill lives with Brad and their two daughters in North Carolina.