About Michelle Higgs

Image of Michelle Higgs


Michelle (Burkes) Higgs is a community leader, wife, mom of three, and a Martinsville High School alumna (go Artesians!). Her father, Larry Burkes, managed the popular Swifty gas station on Main St. in Martinsville for over 25 years. Her mother, Carol Burkes, worked with CICOA, delivering meals to the elderly and infirm throughout Morgan County. She returned to Indiana in 2016 to be closer to her family and to raise her two youngest sons “near trees and creeks and open spaces” after living and working around the world. She is Hoosier through and through and loves country roads and the smell of spring rain and fresh-cut grass. Motivated by her deep faith, she strives to build a community that honors the sacredness of all.

Rooted in Hoosier hospitality, Michelle decided to run to represent the people of House District 60 because she knows that when more of us can shape the decisions that impact our lives–whether at the Statehouse or in our workplace–we all do better. But for too long, too many of her neighbors have been left out and left behind by divisive politics as usual in our state. Because so many in our community have been unheard and feel isolated, too many issues have gone unaddressed for too long.

Michelle imagines a beloved community united by what we value and where the concerns of everyone who live here are heard and their needs are met. She wants HD 60 to be a place where our air, soil, and water are clean, where we can get the healthcare we need when we need it, and where our families can afford to keep the lights on and their homes heated.

Since high school, Michelle has distinguished herself as a leader at church, at work, and in her community. A tri-captain of the Martinsville High School swim team, she studied internationally at the University of the Nations Academy of Performing Arts in Cambridge, Ontario, and at Geerings Business School in Ashford, Kent, England. She has worked in a variety of fields, including at Arthur Anderson, one of the "Big Five" accounting firms at the time, where she supported policies to protect and support pregnant women and nursing mothers in the workplace. An entrepreneur, she helped to co-found Coupons.com in 1994 as an award-winning online community, capturing the coveted 18-35 year-old female demographic in the very early days of the internet.

Michelle’s Hoosier values and commitment to community and faith-based service were evident through her leadership roles in churches and faith spaces throughout her time in Los Angeles, including co-chairing a food and clothing ministry that served over 500 families each month. She also contributed to the arts as the marketing, communications, and technology manager for Theatre West, the longest-running member-led theater company in Los Angeles. Her dedication to education and community development was further demonstrated through her roles as PTA president and board member at both Light & Life Christian School and the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts (LACHSA). She was a member of the School Site Council overseeing Title 1 implementation for a Television, Theatre, and Fine Arts Magnet middle school in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), the second-largest public school system in the country.

Michelle brought back with her the sum of her experiences ready to serve her community once again. Too many towns, including her own hometown, were becoming EPA Superfund sites causing cancer and other chronic illnesses, not to mention the opioid crisis and rising mental health needs. She became actively involved in advocacy work with several nonpartisan groups particularly around healthcare, environment, education and housing, notably testifying numerous times at the Indiana Statehouse and Washington DC.

Michelle Higgs's campaign is built on a foundation of diverse professional experiences, people-first values, a strong commitment to community service, and a proven track record of leadership and advocacy. Her dedication to public service makes her a unique and compelling candidate to represent House District 60 at the Indiana Statehouse. Her journey reflects a deep commitment to improving the lives of Hoosiers, uplifting the voices of those directly impacted. Michelle firmly believes public policy must be rooted in relationship. A government of the people means working with the people.

In the words of Gandhi,
Whatever is done for me, but not with me, is done to me.