Daleen Berry is an award-winning investigative journalist, a New York Times best-selling author, and a TED Talks speaker. She has authored or co-authored seven books, including her most recent, Shatter the Silence, the long-awaited sequel to her 2011 breakout memoir, Sister of Silence. In April 2016, a compilation of her early newspaper columns were released as an ebook, in Tales of the Vintage Berry Wine Gang.
Two months after bilateral knee surgery, Ms. Berry completed her fifth book, Guilt by Matrimony (2015), about the corrupt police investigation into the murder of Aspen heiress Nancy Pfister. Her New York Times status came about due to her work on Pretty Little Killers and The Savage Murder of Skylar Neese (2014), about the murder of a Morgantown, W.Va. teenager.
Ms. Berry’s professional writing career began at the Preston County Journal in 1988. Two years later, she received a first-place award for investigative journalism from the West Virginia Press Association. It was the first of many awards. For the next twenty-five years, Ms. Berry wrote for newspapers around the country and published law enforcement journals for law enforcement agencies such as the West Virginia Deputy Sheriff’s Association and West Virginia Fraternal Order of Police.
After decades of research and reporting, Ms. Berry is considered an expert on women’s issues, child sexual abuse, and domestic violence. She has also investigated and written about many criminal and civil trials during her time as a crime reporter. More recently, she has written for the Associated Press, the Daily Beast and Huffington Post. Ms. Berry’s keen insight into the human psyche, her deep compassion, and her sensitivity allow her access to personal stories that were off limits to other reporters.
Her memoir, Sister of Silence, and Guilt by Matrimony were both named to West Virginia University’s Appalachian Literature list in 2016. Sister of Silence details her journey from sexual abuse victim to survivor while growing up in Appalachia. Ken Lanning, an FBI special agent and one of the country’s renowned profilers (since retired) wrote the book’s foreword. Therapists are now using this book to help people understand their ability to speak out, overcome their fears, and achieve personal power. Students and instructors at Johns Hopkins University, UC Berkeley, Towson University, Oklahoma City University, and elsewhere are using Sister of Silence in the classroom. It has received both critical and popular acclaim.
After a 2012 interview on The Bob Edwards Show, the veteran broadcast journalist and former NPR Morning Edition host called Ms. Berry a “magnificent storyteller.” Kirkus Reviews calls her “an engaging writer, her style fluid, with welcome touches of humor and sustained tension throughout.” Sister of Silence was awarded first place in the Appalachian Theme category of the West Virginia Writers’ Competition. In 2012, Berry’s as-yet-unpublished book, Lethal Silence, took first place in the Pearl Buck Award in Writing for Social Change category, given jointly by West Virginia Writers and the Pearl S. Buck Birthplace Foundation.
Ms. Berry is an experienced public speaker who speaks about important social topics at various speeches at conferences around the country, including Johns Hopkins University, UC Berkeley, and Penn State University, where her memoir has been used in the classroom. She and her books have appeared on the Dr. Phil Show, 20/20, 48 Hours, the TODAY show, Dateline, Lifetime, Discovery ID, Crime Watch Today, and in international publications such as Elle and People magazines. In 2016, she is slated to appear on TV episodes for Oxygen Network and Discovery International.