A Voice for the Voiceless
Contact Erin about booking her at your next event
At the Podium
Erin Merryn’s mission is to show others you can overcome all the obstacles life brings you and achieve anything you set your mind to as long as you believe in yourself. Sharing from her life experiences of being sexually abused as a child, being labeled with a learning disability as a teenager and diagnosed as a young adult with epilepsy Erin hasn’t allowed these challenges stop her in all she has set out to accomplish in this life. Threatened to stay silent by her abusers Erin has become a voice for the voiceless going after creating her own law, “Erin’s Law” that has either been passed or being voted on in more than half the country which requires children be educated on age appropriate personal body safety curriculum in schools. She was told in high school by her teacher and guidance counselor she would never get accepted into college not to bother applying Erin didn't let their doubt or a learning disability stop her from accomplishing her dream of going to college. Five years out of high school she graduated with her Masters in Social Work. When Erin had a grand mal seizure while driving at 22 years old and told she had epilepsy it just added to her resilience but it was what doctors found in the MRI of her brain that leave her audiences speechless.
A Resilient Life: One woman’s journey on overcoming child abuse, a learning disability, and epilepsy.
Surviving to Thriving: Overcoming child abuse to passing Erin’s Law.
"Erin Merryn is a dynamic Christian young lady who shares her tragic testimony of how she was abused growing up, but once she was able to open up, God set her free. She is one of the best speakers we have ever heard and her story will help millions."
—Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, parents of TLC's 19 Kids and Counting
Erin's Law and the message it carries is extremely important for all students. She has identified a gap in our education that has resulted in this horrific epidemic to continue! Her message will without a doubt have a significant impact on the children of this nation and lower the sexual abuse statistics that we now carry. Thank you to Erin for being a fearless survivor!
- Jessica Mack Willow School Social Worker
On September 19, 2013, the CAC of Benton County held its annual Cherishing Children Dinner with guest speaker Erin Merryn.Erin had been in Arkansas in February of 2013 and had an astounding response from our state legislators and Governor in support of bringing Erin’s law to Arkansas. Because of Erin’s passion and the CAC of Benton County’s passion to bring education to our community, we were honored to have Erin as our guest speaker for this annual event. Little did we know what an incredible event this would be, bringing in over $45,000 in donations at the night’s end. For almost an hour, our guests sat mesmerized as Erin shared her story and her zeal. We had over 300 in attendance at this event. Our guests included individuals from the agencies who work with the investigation and prosecution of child abuse cases. Also among our guests were corporate executives, individuals who are frequent speakers with TED, state legislators, and even reality show hosts.
I can say without exception, I continually heard “that was the most engaging presenter I have ever heard – so impactful, so moving, so challenging.”
We are most grateful for the opportunity to have had Erin Merryn share not only in our event, but are grateful for the impact she has made on our community and our state. Lives are being changed because of Erin’s courage and her passion.
Beverly R. Engle
Children’s Advocacy Center of Benton County
Erin spoke at a fundraising luncheon for our Child Advocacy Center in Walworth County, WI. She was phenomenal !!!
Erin's candid story of childhood sexual abuse and her determination to tell her story, educating and advocating in the process is remarkable. We are in awe of Erin's strength and how she moved our audience to tears by telling her story so eloquently.
Thank you again Erin, we wish you all the best!
Walworth County Alliance for Children
Erin Merryn is a nationally recognized speaker. Appearing on Oprah, OWN, Oprah's Life Class, Katie Couric, MSNBC, FOX, CNN, Good Morning America, Jane Velez, AOL, and Montel Williams. Covered in People Magazine, Glamour Magazine, Time Magazine, Cosmo Girl Magazine, London Times, USA Today, Huffington Post, Chicago Tribune, among others. She has spoken before the United States Department of Education, Children's Advocacy Centers, child abuse conferences, High Schools, Universities, State Capitals, even Carnegie Hall before 3,000 people for Glamour Magazine Woman of the Year. Erin has been speaking since her senior year of high school in 2004.
(Erin cannot travel June-July due to birth of baby)
Mississippi Legislators -January
Western Kansas Child Advocacy Center -February
National Governors Association with Governor Quinn DC-February
District 211 Alternative School-February
Naperville District 204 Awareness night to Parents-March
National Center for Missing and Exploited Children Virginia- March
Naperville, IL School District 204- March
Las Vegas, Nevada- April
Ohio University- April
Community Crisis Center Elgin, IL-April
Illinois Children's Advocacy Center-April
Kansas Children's Advocacy Center-May
Scott City, Kansas Middle/High school-May
Catholic School District-May
New York City-Launch of 3rd book An Unimaginable Act Nov 3rd-6th Book launch signing, discussion: November 4th 8am Italian Trade Commission NYC
(Contact Erin for details about event)
New York City/ Washington DC Lauch of 3rd book Nov 10th-13th
West Virginia- November 13th-14th
Indiana State Capital testify on Erin's Law-February
Phesant Run Resort St. Charles, Illinois -March
North Carolina -April
New York -April
Rolling Meadows H.S. Illinois -May
Schaumburg High School -May
Michigan Capital testify on Erin's Law -July
Oakland University Michigan -October
University of Tennessee -October
New Jersey -October
Schaumburg High School December 2011
District 54-Schaumburg October 2011
Syracuse, New York Safe Horizons October 2011
San Marcos, Texas CASA 22nd Annual Conference October 2011
Corpus Christi, Texas September 2011
Hunstsville, Alabama National Children's Advocacy Center September 2011
YWCA Vancouver, Washington September 2011
United States Department of Education Washington D.C. August 7-10th 2011
Children's Advocacy Center Holland Michigan May 2011
Dixon, Illinois Champion For Children May 2011
McHenry Community College, McHenry Illinois May 2011
Laredo Texas Children Advocacy Center Conference April 2011
Keene State College New Hampshire April 2011
Hershey, PA Child abuse conference April 2011
New Jersey Child Abuse Conference April 2011
Iowa Child Abuse Conference March 2011
Indiana Coalition Against Sexual Assault State Conference March 2011
Conant High School, Hoffman Estates Illinois February 2011
EWomen Network Chicago January 2011
Walworth County, Wisconsin CAC state conference December 8, 2010
Maryland National Children Alliance State Conference October 27-28 2010
Dupage County Illinois Take Back the Night October 2010
Washington D.C. National leadership Conference-June 2010
Aurora University April 2010
Harper College April 2010
Northern Illinois University April 2010
Norfolk Nebraska Children Advocacy Center Conference-April 2010
University of Pittsburg Kansas/Pittsburg CAC-April 2010
Dixon, Illinois Children Advocacy Center Conference February 2010
Western Illinois University Take Back the Night October 2009
Bloomingdale, Michigan Van Buren Youth Camp-June 2009
Farmington New Mexico Sexual Assault Center-April 2009
Schaumburg High School March 2009
Cape Cod Massachusetts Current Thinking/New Directions Conference-Sept. 2008
Columbia South Carolina National Advocacy Center "Child Abuse Summit" Sept. 2008
Northwestern Illinois University Take Back the Night April 2008
Schaumburg High School March 2008
Houston Texas Children Assessment Center April 2007
Odessa Texas Children Advocacy Center-April 2007
Schaumburg High School March 2007
Austin Texas Children's Assessment Center- November 2006
Dallas Texas Crimes Against Children Conference-August 2006
Annawan High School May 2006
Schaumburg High School May 2006
Wausau Wisconsin Women Community Center May 2006
Denton County Texas Children Advocacy Center- April 2005
Western Illinois University Take Back the Night October 2004
Northwest Cook County Illinois Children Advocacy Center April 2004
-Since 2004 Erin has been traveling to various places across America sharing her triumph over a childhood of sexual abuse and how she went after a law that was passed in Illinois called Erin's Law in February 2011. A voice once ashamed to tell anyone what happened behind closed doors has now opened that door to the world to expose a silent epidemic in an unstoppable crusade to put a face and voice on sexual abuse. She has spoken at high schools, colleges, numerous national conferences, events for Children's Advocacy Centers, rape crisis centers, Take Back the Night events, and community events. Erin has appeared on numerous national and local television and radio broadcasts including Oprah, Issues with Jane Velez Mitchell, Good Morning America, and Montel Williams.
Erin is on a mission of changing the way America avoids talking about child sexual abuse by bringing education into the classrooms of elementary schools teaching children on safe touch and unsafe touch. Schools teach children fire safety on Stop, Drop, and Roll, Stranger Danger and put them through the D.A.R.E. programs on saying no to drugs and alcohol. Yet we continue to fail children by not teaching them one of the most important lesson plans on sexual abuse that could save them from ever becoming victimized and encourage a child to come forward and break their silence. Erin has a vision of mandated programs in all schools across America on child abuse awareness in the coming years.
Erin is bringing the topic to the dinner table in homes across America to have parents educate their kids on not keeping secrets. Sharing with parents that 93% of the time the person that abuses a child is someone they love and trust with their kids and the warning signs to look for. Erin offers steps parents can take to prevent their child from being abused, the best way to talk to children on this topic, and what to do once you learn your child has been abused.
Erin will leave you with a powerful inspiring message on a voice once silenced by evil that has discovered her purpose to turn all bad things around for the good. A message you will not forget.
Ms. Merryn is an excellent public speaker and passionate advocate for children who have been sexually abused. Erin presented at out 2010 Leadership Conference and was very warmly received by our more than 300 attendees. Ms. Merryn has a message of hope for us all: that is, that we can make a difference in the life of an abused child that it is possible to heal after abuse. There is no more inspiring message than that.
-Teresa Huizar -
Executive Director National Children Alliance.
“Erin Merryn is a powerful speaker and advocate for countless, faceless children and adults in our country who have similarly suffered sexual abuse. Her raw honesty and captivating portrayal of her experiences and struggles to disclose these experiences will inspire anyone to become more aware of child sexual abuse and involved in making our communities safer for children. Through her speeches and two books, Erin is an inspiration to professionals working daily to fight child abuse in the United States. She affirms the great work done by Children’s Advocacy Centers, and challenges everyone – professionals, parents, policy makers, adults – to work together on behalf of our children.”
- Chris Newlin National Children's Advocacy Center-