About Laura Shannon

Michael and Laura Shannon

Mrs. Laura Shannon 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 which enlighten the university's faculty and students about new thinking in the study of Europe.

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Mrs. Shannon has served as a member of the Advisory Board for the Nanovic Institute for European Studies since 2003. She has made regular visits to Europe, particularly to France where she has honed her language skills and explored libraries and cultural centers. She has been involved in social services throughout her life. 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. A graduate of Webster University, she and her husband have two daughters, Claire and Kathryn.


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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.