Celiac.com 10/24/2011 - Shannon Ford, of Miami, Florida has been crowned Mrs. United States 2011. Mrs. Ford received the crown from 2010 winner Rachel Juillerat. The award is particularly noteworthy for people with celiac disease and gluten intolerance. Two years ago, Ford was diagnosed with celiac disease, and she now maintains a gluten-free diet.

Shannon L. FordContestants for Mrs. United States are judged on personality, charitable commitment, evening gown and swimsuit, a judges’ interview and dramatic final live question.

In her new role as Mrs. United States, Ford will make appearances across the country, charity events and speaking engagements. By promoting her platform, “1 in 133 – Raising Awareness for Celiac Disease," Ford also hopes to increase celiac disease awareness and to advocate for better labeling of our nation’s food supply.

Of her new title, Ford says: “Being Mrs. United States is a huge responsibility. I’m excited to get back to Florida and get to work.” She is scheduled to begin make appearances across the nation, with her first stop being a benefit luncheon for the Easter Seals.

Mrs. Ford earned her B.A. in Psychology from Florida International University. She currently works as a human resources manager for major wealth management company. She also serves as a Miami Dolphins ambassador, chosen from former Dolphin cheerleaders to represent the organization and advocate community service.

Ford married her husband Ray after dating him for 15 years. They are both avid runners, and Shannon Ford has competed in numerous half and full marathons.

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