About Scott Berne

Upon the separation of his parents, Scott Berne’s entire world turned upside-down.  When an ugly custody battle ensued, Scott became an innocent pawn in his mother’s attempt to destroy his father.  As the mental health of Scott’s mother deteriorated, her behavior turned increasingly erratic – burning down their family home, hiring a hit man to kill Scott’s father, and finally, abducting Scott and his younger brother on their first unsupervised visitation after their father received full and permanent custody. 

Scott was taken to five countries and thirteen residences by his mother over a period of two years, instilling life-long instability, trust issues, anxiety and panic issues as well as exposure to life-threatening abuse and circumstances.  Scott was miraculously recovered thanks to a babysitter who called the police after seeing Scott’s face in a missing child ad printed in the August 1981 edition of Ladies’ Home Journal.  Scott’s mother was dramatically captured, and the case gripped national and international coverage as the State of Texas, where they were found, fought to recognize the custody of Scott’s father in New York.  During this time, Scott and his younger brother spent several weeks in juvenile hall, due to the non-existence of proper protocol for caring for recovered kidnapped children. 

Spurred by this case, the 1980 Parental Kidnapping Prevention Act, signed by Jimmy Carter, allowed for Scott and his brother to return to their father in New York.  The threats and attempts to re-kidnap the kids continued, however, making around-the-clock police protection necessary.  Scott’s mother continued to take dramatic and dangerous actions, and Scott’s life would not return to ‘normal’ until after her suicide. Because of inadequate laws, Scott’s mother was never required to serve any prison time for her actions. 

Today, Scott is a children’s rights advocate who has retold his experiences to many audiences and through his book, “Extraordinary Circumstances,” currently being sold all over the world.  He has appeared on “Oprah” and throughout the talk-show circuit to spread the word that the results of parental abduction on the children are life-long, and that education is the only remedy.   He most recently appeared on the Inspiring Lives with Dr. Shellie show on the CBS affiliate in Pittsburgh, an hour-long television talk show that focuses on individuals who strive to make a difference in our society.

Scott is an active board member and spokesperson for the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children.  He speaks regarding his experiences at events to help show just how real the issue of parental abduction is and the effects on the children.  Scott works on his own and with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children with the goals of education, prevention and stronger laws to protect children.  In 2012, Scott testified in front of the New York State Senate and House Members at the Capital building in Albany to lobby for changing the criminal charge for parental abduction from a misdemeanor to a felony.  Scott’s mission has only just begun!

Scott is currently a real estate investor and a licensed salesperson for Jim Morrow Real Estate in Rochester, New York, where he lives with his wife Jill and their two dogs.

Scott at the New York State Capitol building in Albany where he testified in front of the New York State Senate and House Members to lobby for changing the criminal charge for parental abduction from a misdemeanor to a felony in 2012.

Scott was a guest speaker at NCMEC/NY Buffalo’s “Horse Around” dinner auction in 2009
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