Sally Denton is an investigative reporter, author, and historian who writes about the subjects others ignore--from a drug conspiracy in Kentucky to organized crime in Las Vegas; from corruption within the Mormon Church to the hidden history of Manifest Destiny; from one of America's bitterest political campaigns to the powerful forces against Franklin D. Roosevelt.  She has an extensive background in print and broadcast, as well as magazine and book writing.

"...Denton could hold a conference all her own and discuss how to take heat and still survive in a hostile climate. She is the television reporter who took on the Kentucky power structure." Las Vegas Sun, 1983.



Robert Laxalt Distinguished Writer Award.  2017.

Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE) "Best Investigative Book of 2016."  The Profiteers.

Kirkus "Best Nonfiction Books of 2016."  The Profiteers.

Financial Times & McKinsey "Best Business Book of 2016," Longlist.  The Profiteers.

New York Times "Editors' Choice," March 2016.  The Profiteers.

BMI-Kluge Fellowship, 2013

Woodrow Wilson Public Scholar Fellowship, 2010.

Hoover Media Fellowship, Stanford University, 2009.

Hoover Media Fellowship, Stanford University, 2008.

Guggenheim Fellowship, 2006.

Nevada Writers’ Hall of Fame, 2008.

New York Times “Editors’ Choice,” July 2007. Passion and Principle

New York Times “Notable Book” of 2003.  American Massacre

Western Heritage Wrangler Award, 2003.  American Massacre

Nevada Silver Pen Award, 2003.

New York Times “Notable Book” of 2001.  The Money and the Power

Western Heritage Wrangler Award, 2001.  “The Truth at Mountain Meadows.” American Heritage Magazine. November 2001.

Lannan Foundation Literary Grant, 2000.

First Place “Investigative Reporting.” Kentucky AP Broadcasters, 1982.

First Place, “Investigative Reporting, New Mexico AP Award, 1978.



Author of nine non-fiction books from 1989 to 2022 published by Liveright, Alfred A. Knopf, Bloomsbury, Doubleday, Vintage, Avon, University of Nebraska Press, and Simon and Schuster.

Director of Literary Nonfiction.  Beverly Rogers, Carol C. Harter Black Mountain Institute.  University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Adjunct Professor of Documentary Studies and History. University of New Mexico and College of Santa Fe.

Goldstein and Denton.  Washington, DC private investigations firm.  1984-1990.

United Press International investigative reporting team, Washington, D.C.  1983-1984.

WKYT Television, Lexington, Kentucky.  Investigative reporter.  1980-1983.

Jack Anderson Washington Merry-Go-Round, nationally syndicated column.  Investigative reporter.  1978-1980.

Rio Grande Sun.  Espanola, New Mexico.  Reporter.  1976-1978.

Boulder City News.  Boulder City, Nevada.  Reporter.  1975-1976.



Third generation Nevadan, born in Elko.  Mother of three sons and one stepdaughter.  Married to Nevada journalist and author, John L. Smith.  On the Board of Trustees and Executive Committee of Nevada Humanities. She divides her time between Boulder City, Nevada and Santa Fe, New Mexico.


Sally Denton is the author of nine books, including bestseller The Bluegrass Conspiracy, and the coauthor of a classic account of Las Vegas, The Money and the Power.

Publicity Inquiries

Johanna Ramos-Boyer, JRB Communications, LLC | 

Literary Agent  |  Gloria Loomis, Watkins Loomis
P.O. Box 20925, New York, NY  10025  |  212-532-0080  |

Feature Films Talent Agent  | Matthew Snyder, Creative Arts Agency
2000 Avenue of the Stars, Los Angeles, CA 90067   | 424- 288-2000   |

Talent Agent  |  Katie Zwick, Creative Arts Agency
2000 Avenue of the Stars, Los Angeles, CA 90067   |   424-288-2640   |