Richard Hill
DNA Testing Author and Speaker

Richard Hill, DNA Testing Author and SpeakerRichard Hill

My name is Richard Hill. I was the first adoptee to identify my birth family through genetic genealogy DNA testing.

This was so remarkable at the time that my story was later told on the front page of The Wall Street Journal.

To share what I learned with other adoptees and genealogists, I created the DNA Testing Adviser website in 2008.

It was the first major independent website on the subject that was not created by a testing company.

Over the next 13 years, I educated thousands of readers and answered a regular flood of individual questions.

Wishing to reduce my workload at age 75, I sold that website and the similarly named Facebook Page in August 2021.  

The Pioneering Adoptee Success Story

My story had so many twists and turns that people kept telling me I should write a book. In 2012 I self-published Finding Family: My Search for Roots and the Secrets in My DNA. It won book awards, received great reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, and sold exceptionally well for a self-published book.

In 2017 my book was republished by Familius. Conventional publishing made it possible for any bookstore to order it and the book found a whole new audience among people who just enjoy  a good story.

The Guide to DNA Testing

Even though Finding Family covered some of the most popular DNA tests, it was not a how-to-do-it book. To fill that need, I published an inexpensive ($3.99) Kindle Short Book on Amazon.com titled Guide to DNA Testing.

This guide is a concise, easy-to-understand overview of genetic genealogy.  It gives readers just enough information to choose the right DNA tests for their purposes. I periodically update it when there is significant new information in the field.

Richard Hill-DNA Speaker

My presentations on DNA testing have been well received at national and regional conferences, including RootsTech, the National Genealogical Society (NGS), the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS), the Southern California Genealogy Jamboree, and Who Do You Think You Are? LIVE in England.

In addition to major conferences, I have given presentations to dozens of local genealogy groups, libraries, DAR meetings, etc. Due to the cost of travel, in-person events have mostly been limited to my home state of Michigan and nearby states.

The pandemic led many groups to host virtual meetings, and this has greatly expanded my reach to new audiences. Since I love educating and interacting with audiences, I continue to speak—both virtually and in person.

To learn more about my presentations, terms, past events, and audience feedback, see my Speakers Page.

Contact me, Richard Hill, when you need a speaker.

A Voice for Change in Adoptee Rights

I believe that everyone, including adoptees, has a right to access the records of their birth. Thousands more adoptees followed the trail I blazed to get around sealed birth records. With DNA tests regularly puncturing the walls of secrecy, several states have opened birth records to adult adoptees.

I have been interviewed many times about my personal success story and the book I wrote about it.

International genealogy and DNA testing company, MyHeritage, chose me to be on the Advisory Board of DNA Quest, a program that distributed free DNA tests to adoptees and their birth families.

I was a major donor to the Kits of Kindness program that purchased DNA test kits for free distribution to adoptees.

Adoption Today magazine published several of my articles and Amy Dickinson, author of the syndicated Ask Amy column, quoted me, Richard Hill, in her answer to a DNA testing question.

I am a member of the Genealogical Speakers Guild, the American Adoption Congress, and the International Society of Genetic Genealogy.

Preserving Family Memories with FOREVER

As my family’s primary photographer, I have taken thousands of photos over the last half century. If my home were destroyed by fire, wind, or water, I could replace everything else. But many of these photos are absolutely precious to me and my family.

In 2019 I discovered FOREVER, a service that will protect photos well beyond my lifetime. In addition to uploading my best digital photos, I began to scan favorite printed photos and upload them to my FOREVER account. Since they also protect PDF files, I also save key genealogy files there.

In 2020 I became a FOREVER Ambassador. If your family’s photos or genealogy documents are important to you, sign up for a Free Intro Account through me, Richard Hill, and I will personally help you get started and share my own photo organization tips.

Once you do that and confirm your email address, you will receive $20 USD OFF coupon.n

NEXT PAGE: The Finding Family Book