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Del Quentin Wilber

Del Quentin Wilber

Read a Q&A With Del Quentin Wilber
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Events and Appearances

Del Quentin Wilber Discusses Rawhide Down with Editor John Sterling

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Del Quentin Wilber, author of Rawhide Down: The Near Assassination of Ronald Reagan

Soon after Del Quentin Wilber got his undergraduate degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism in 1997, he stumbled on his first big story: a massive fish kill in the waterways of Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Living out of a suitcase and writing in drab motel rooms for days on end, Wilber tromped along muddy shorelines, reeked of dead fish, watched fellow reporters become sick with inexplicable illnesses—and immediately knew that there was no other job he’d rather be doing.

A recovering former collegiate baseball player, Wilber joined the staff of The Baltimore Sun after landing one of the Sun’s prestigious two-year internships. Before long, he was given a full-time position covering crime in a suburban bureau, and in 2001 the paper’s editors tapped him to cover crime in the city. His reporting on wrongdoing by Baltimore’s police chief led to the chief’s conviction on corruption charges and a stint in federal prison. In 2002, Wilber led the paper’s coverage of the D.C. sniper shootings, which later was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Wilber’s work as a police reporter received national recognition when he won the Al Nakkula Award for Police Reporting in 2004

Wilber joined the staff of the Washington Post in 2004 as the D.C. police reporter. He soon gained the trust of the police department’s top officers as well as numerous cops on the street, which ultimately allowed him to gain unusual access to the inner workings of the department. In numerous stories for the Post, Wilber explored the life of police officers and detectives as they investigated homicides and tried to solve cold cases, car thefts and burglaries.

In 2006, he became the paper’s national aviation writer. Long fascinated by airplanes and aviation, Wilber covered plane crashes, flight delays, and aviation safety and security issues. To better understand the industry, he also became a licensed private pilot. After being promoted by the paper to cover the federal courts, he chronicled the trial of former Senator Ted Stevens and wrote about the complicated issues surrounding the detainees at the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He got the idea to write Rawhide Down shortly after attending a hearing for John W. Hinckley Jr. and being handed the would-be assassin’s gun by an FBI agent who kept it in his drawer.

As a boy in Massachusetts, Wilber became obsessed with the Boston Red Sox, in part because his grandfather, Del Wilber, played for the Red Sox as a back-up catcher in the 1950s. He later moved with his family to Northern Virginia and attended Georgetown Preparatory School. He now lives in the Washington area with his wife, NPR correspondent Laura Sullivan, and their two sons.

Contact Del Quentin Wilber

Do you have a question or comment? Would you like to get an autographed Rawhide Down postcard? Would you like to have Wilber appear at an event or join you for your book club? Send him an email using this form.

Signed copies of Rawhide Down are available for purchase from Politics and Prose.

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For publicity and media requests, please contact:
Maggie Sivon
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Henry Holt and Company

Events and Appearances




Inkwood Books
May 9, 2011
6:00 PM
216 S. Amenia Ave
Tampa, FL 33609


Bryn Mawr Film Institute
May 23, 2011
7:00 PM
Book Club with Michael Smerconish
824 W. Lancaster Avenue
Bryn Mawr, PA 19010




National Portrait Gallery
Saturday, March 31
Time: 2:00 PM
Eighth and F Streets NW
Washington, DC 20001


University of Virginia/PBS Forum
Monday, April 2
Time: 11:00 AM
Miller Center
2201 Old Ivy Road
Charlottesville, VA


Eureka College
Wednesday, April 4
Time: 7:00 PM
300 E. College Avenue
Eureka, IL 61530


Republican National Lawyers Association
Thursday, April 5
Time: 11:30 AM
Luncheon @ Wildfire Restaurant
159 W Erie Street
Chicago, IL 60654-3700

*Cost $25 RNLA members, $40 non-members


Nixon Library
Thursday, April 12
Time 1:00 PM
Panel Discussion
18001 Yorba Linda Boulevard
Yorba Linda, CA 92886

*Tickets: $6/members and $8/non-members


Wednesday, April 18
Time: 12:00 PM
Talk and Round-Table Lunch Discussion
200 Hudson Street
New York, NY 10013

*Tickets & lunch from $40


The Tower Club
Friday, April 20th
Time: 8:00 AM – 9:30 AM
Speaker Breakfast
Tysons Corner, 8000 Towers Crescent Drive
Vienna, VA 22182

*$30 Per Member $35 Per Guest (includes copy of book)
For reservations please call 703.761.4250