Born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah, Shannon spent two years in Sudan working as a freelance journalist for the United Nations. During that time she traveled throughout the country to cover a variety of humanitarian issues, including the genocide in Darfur. In Sudan, Shannon wrote for various international and national publications, including Forced Migration Review, the Khartoum Monitor, and Al Bab.
In 2007, Shannon moved to NYC to write for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). While working for UNPFA, she reported on issues that affect women and young people during humanitarian crises, such as sexual and reproductive health, and gender-based violence.
Shannon’s reports on humanitarian crises, including those in the Pacific Islands, Dominican Republic of Congo, Kenya, and Nepal, played a critical role in raising awareness about support for women in order to ensure the health, security, and well-being of families and communities.
In early 2007, Shannon established a writing contract with Fifi Oscard, a renowned literary agency. While living in New York, Shannon worked closely with her agent to develop a book based on her experiences in Sudan. Throughout this process, Shannon’s ongoing struggle with drug and alcohol addiction worsened, and as a result she lost the contract.
Today, Shannon has five years in long-term recovery and works as Marketing, Communications and Development Consultant for Addiction Recovery Organizations world-wide. She offers affordable and innovative growth campaigns in order to help organizations expand their reach, and in turn, facilitate a positive conversation around America's crisis. Shannon is a well-known Recovery Advocate and works to affect public and private policy changes at the local, state, and federal level in order to reduce the stigma surrounding addiction as well as barriers to sustaining long-term recovery.
In 2015, Shannon published her first book, No Tourists Allowed: Seeking Inner Peace & Sobriety in War-Torn Sudan. She is currently working on a second book, Sex, Drugs & Recovery, which follows the events of No Tourists Allowed, focusing on her spiral into addiction and recovery process.