This beautiful woman was unknown to me until last week. She appeared in my FB feed with a message that really spoke to me. I wanted to know more about this dynamic lady. Please, listen to the Ted Talk below. I think she is totally amazing!
“People who walk in purpose collide with destiny. When you find destiny, you find peace.”
Bertrice Berry was born in Wilmington, Delaware, in 1960. She was one of seven children who grew up in poverty, raised by a single mother who was plagued by alcoholism. Later in her life she recognized that her mother’s drinking was a way to mask her own pain and the burden that she endured as a black woman with sparse resources for herself and consequently, her children.
She was not encouraged to complete her education by her family, and she admits that she had huge “attitude” in high school. But one of her instructors recognized her brilliance. Bertrice eventually graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. from Jacksonville University in Florida in 1982. She went on to obtain a M.A. in 1986 and then a Ph.D. in 1988 both in sociology from Kent State University in Ohio.
She taught sociology at Kent State for a while but early in the 1990’s she left teaching and worked as an entertainer, lecturer and comedian. She hosted her own nationally syndicated talk show. She has appeared on The Opra Winfrey Show, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, CBS Nightwatch, CNN’s Crossfire, Sonya Live and done TEDx Talks. She has authored two memoirs and several novels. In 2012 she won an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work.