About Laura Shannon

2013 Mike And Laura Shannon With Michael Meng 600x
Michael and Laura Shannon with author Michael Meng, winner of the 2013 Laura Shannon Prize in Contemporary European Studies.

Mrs. Laura Shannon (1939-2021) and her husband, Michael ’58, of Houston, Texas established the Laura Shannon Prize, which was first awarded in 2010. The Laura Shannon Prize is recognized internationally as one of the leading book prizes in the field of European studies. Prize-winners give major lectures on the Notre Dame campus, enlightening the university’s faculty and students about new thinking in the study of Europe.

A graduate of Webster University, Mrs. Shannon served as a member of the Advisory Board for the Nanovic Institute for European Studies for many years after joining in 2003. She made regular visits to Europe, particularly to France where she honed her language skills and explored libraries and cultural centers. Laura was involved in social services throughout her life until her passing in 2021. She acted as custody mediator in the family court of Minneapolis and as chair of the board of the United Theological Seminary in Brighton, Minnesota. 

Mr. Shannon is president of MEShannon & Associates, a Houston-based financial consulting firm. Before embarking on a career as a financial executive for such companies as Gulf Oil, Republic Steel, and Ecolab, where he served as chairman of the board, he earned a master’s degree in business administration from Stanford University. A respected businessman, Mike has served on the board of directors at Apogee Enterprises, Inc., the Clorox Company, NACCO Industries, Inc., and CenterPoint Energy, as well as several private equity firms. The Shannons’ two daughters, Claire (currently a member of the institute’s Advisory Board) and Kathryn, continue their parents’ legacy of commitment to and engagement with the Nanovic Institute.