Inga Peulich is of Bosnian heritage, being born Inga Došen in Bosnia and Herzegovina and migrating to Australia in 1967 with her family. Peulich is married to small business owner Savo Peulich, and they have a son, Paul Peulich who is currently a Councillor with Kingston City Council, where he was also elected as Mayor in 2013–2014.
Peulich has a Bachelor of Arts and a Masters in Education. Before election as the State Liberal Member for Bentleigh in the Victorian Legislative Assembly, Peulich taught VCE English and Psychology and was English Faculty Head in a large government school in the South East Region. She also has extensive experience in small business and continues today through her involvement in an engineering business in the region.
Peulich has been involved with many political, community and not-for-profit organisations. Membership include:Councillor, City of Moorabbin 1990–1993
Director, Marriott Foundation 1999–2003
City Chair, Salvation Army Red Shield Appeal. Chair, Moorabbin Arts Council
Past Pres., Victorian Parents Children in Day Care Association Inc.
Involvement with various community and sporting organisations
Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
Liberal Party of Australia.
In 1989, Inga Peulich joined the Moorabbin Branch of the Liberal Party and a year later was elected to the Moorabbin City Council. She was a Liberal member of the Victorian Legislative Assembly from 1992 to 2002, representing the electorate of Bentleigh. One of many members elected in Jeff Kennett's landslide win at the 1992 election, Peulich lost her seat of Bentleigh at the 2002 election, having held it one term in opposition for the first time since the seat was created and was defeated at the fourth election. She returned to parliament at the 2006 election, being elected to the Legislative Council as one of the members for South Eastern Metropolitan Region. Peulich was re-elected to the Victorian Legislative Council in 2010 and 2014
Following a varied parliamentary committee career, Peulich was promoted to Shadow Parliamentary Secretary, Education and Communities in February 2008. Following the election of the Baillieu Liberal/National Coalition at the 2010 Victorian State Election, Peulich was appointed Secretary to Liberal Parliamentary Party and Coalition and in March 2013, promoted to Parliamentary Secretary for Education
In March 2014, Peulich was promoted to Cabinet Secretary in the Napthine Ministry.
The MLC has raised ire in certain spheres of Victorian society for her views against initiatives such as the Safe Schools programme. In the most recent edition of the Quarterly Essay, Peulich is cited as stating that the programme—designed to keep gender and sexually diverse students safe—is, “‘frightening’, and saying that it cultivates in children ‘an isolation from their own families and their own values’.”
In 2007 Peulich employed race blogger Gary Anderton as an adviser. He had published material maligning Aborigines and his Indian doctor on his blog in 2004. At the 2006 Victorian state election he had run as the Liberal candidate for the seat of Lyndhurst.
In 2007 Peulich was accused by others in the Liberal Party of being a key supporter of Ken Aldred's attempt to gain Liberal preselelction for the federal electorate of Holt. In 1995, Aldred had tabled documents in the federal parliament linking Mark Leibler, National Chairman of the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council, to an alleged money laundering scam run by the Israeli intelligence agency, Mossad. The so-called Suriname papers were later exposed as fakes. When told Aldred had won the Holt ballot, Liebler telephoned Treasurer Peter Costello, and the Prime Minister's office, to demand the result be overturned, and Aldred's endorsement was withdrawn.
Following the defeat of the Liberal National coalition government at the 2014 Victorian State election, Peulich was appointed to the shadow cabinet as the Shadow Minister for Multicultural Affairs and Scrutiny of Government.
Following the 2010 State election, Peulich was credited with playing a significant role in winning several sandbelt metropolitan seats to secure a narrow win for the Victorian Liberal/ National Coalition Government. This, along with Peulich's high level of community activity and robust parliamentary performance, made her a significant target for political opponents, reflected in attempts to link her to various controversies reported in the media .
In November 2012 Inga Peulich accused Liberal member Geoff Gledhill and conservative fellow traveller Tamsin Bearsley of party disloyalty for failing to vote for her son in his mayoral bid.
In January 2013, a number of articles were run in the Age newspaper, based on dubious e-mails accusing Peulich of intervening directly on behalf of her son in his mayoral bid. However Fairfax was unable to confirm the source and the authenticity of the e-mails and acknowledged it could not be sure if Peulich sent them.
When not working in politics Peulich enjoys family activities, community and international affairs, sport and recreation, education and further study, and travel.
Peulich's husband Savo, son Paul and mother Nena Dosen, all ran as candidates at the 2003 election for the Glen Eira City Council. In 2008, Paul was elected to the Kingston City Council. He was unanimously elected Mayor of Kingston for 2013–2014.