Mrs. Universe 2021
After 2 years of marriage, Shannon Ford and her husband Ray wanted to start a family. After an unsuccessful year of trying, they received the diagnosis…Unexplained Infertility. Two more years followed with test after test, treatment after treatment and still no baby. Having already spent thousands of dollars thus far, they were now facing the challenges that so many couples face every day, how could they financially afford to continue to “TRY” and start a family, with no guarantee of success.
Then in 2015, Shannon was fortunate to be admitted into an IVF clinical study called the IVY Study. This study provided a single round of In Vitro fertilization (IVF) at a significantly reduced cost. For 2 months, Shannon and her husband Ray drove 4 hours each way for doctors’ appointments, all with the hope of starting their family. In December 2015, that dream was realized with birth of their son, Rider.
Now as an advocate for Infertility Awareness, Shannon’s mission is that everyone have access to fertility treatment benefits and the opportunity to bring home healthy babies. Shannon is also an ambassador for the Baby Quest Foundation, which provides grants twice a year to couples seeking financial assistance with the cost of IVF.
A graduate of Florida International University with a B.A. in Psychology, the former Miami Dolphins Cheerleader and Ambassador, is currently the Regional Human Resources Manager for an International CPA firm. Shannon is also a national spokesperson for Celiac Disease Awareness, an autoimmune disease she was diagnosed with in 2009 which requires her to maintain a gluten free diet for the remainder of her life. She has graced the cover of two national publications in sharing her story with others.
Shannon, Ray & Rider currently reside in Pembroke Pines, Florida with their two rescue dogs, Sugar Bear and Shiva. Shannon was recently crowned Mrs. Universe 2021 and will crown her successor in Las Vegas in July 2021. In addition to her current title, Shannon was also, Mrs. Florida America 2019, Mrs. United States 2011 and Miss Florida USA 2002.
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