Ann Romney

Ann Romney

Infobox Person
name = Ann Romney

caption = Ann Romney in Des Moines on October 27, 2007.
birth_name = Ann Lois Davies
birth_date = birth date and age|1949|4|16
birth_place =
death_date =
death_place =
other_names =
known_for = wife of former Governor and Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney
occupation = Homemaker
nationality = American
spouse = Mitt Romney (1969-present)
alma_mater = Brigham Young University
party = Republican
religion = The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon)
website = []

Ann Romney (born April 16, 1949Susan Page, [ "Ann Romney's delicate balance wins her admirers"] , "USA Today", 2007-07-18. Accessed 2007-09-22.] ) is the wife of former 2008 United States presidential election candidate Mitt Romney. From 2003 to 2007 she was First Lady of Massachusetts.

Early life

Born Ann Lois Davies, [ Photo caption] , Associated Press, 2007-03-05. Accessed 2007-09-22.] she was raised in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan,Ronald Kessler, [ "Ann Romney: Mitt Has Always Been Pro-Life"] ,, 2007-05-23. Accessed 2007-09-21.] by parents Edward Roderick DaviesNeil Swidey and Michael Paulson, [ "The Making of Mitt Romney: Privilege, tragedy, and a young leader"] , "The Boston Globe", 2007-06-24. Accessed 2007-09-22.] (1915-1992)cite web | url= | title=Individual Record: Edward Roderick Davies (AFN: 9TQV-M5) | publisher=FamilySearch | accessdate=2008-01-25 Verify credibility|date=July 2008 ] and Lois Davies (born Pottinger 1917-1993).cite web | url= | title=Individual Record: Lois Pottinger (AFN: 9TQV-NB) | publisher=FamilySearch | accessdate=2008-01-25] Her father, originally from Wales, was opposed to all organized religion, although the family was nominally Episcopalian; [ [ "Ann Romney: You Gotta Have Faith"] , ABC News, June 15, 2007. Retrieved September 18, 2007.] he was a businessman, and mayor of Bloomfield Hills.

Ann Davies knew of Mitt Romney since elementary school. She went to the private Kingswood School in Bloomfield Hills,cite news |title="From prankster to politician, Romney deemed a class act" |url= |work=Boston Globe |date=2005-06-12 |accessdate=2007-09-21 ] which was the sister school to the all-boys Cranbrook School that he attended. The two were re-introduced and began dating in March 1965; they informally agreed to marriage after his senior prom in June 1965.

While he was attending Stanford University for a year and then was away starting two and a half years of Mormon missionary duty in France, she converted on her own to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints [ "On the Road With Ann Romney"] , ABC News, 2007-02-14. Accessed 2007-09-21.] during 1966, guided by Mitt's father George Romney, the Governor of Michigan. She graduated from high school in 1967 and began attending Brigham Young University. While at BYU she dated Kim Cameron.

Marriage and children

Soon after his return from France, she and Mitt Romney were married on March 21, 1969 [ "Mitt Talks About Ann"] , Excerpts from November 2006 speech. Accessed 2007-09-21.] (her family could not attend the temple ceremony due to being non-Mormon, but attended another ceremony held for them [cite web | title="Romney’s Mormon Question" | date=2007-05-10 | accessdate = 2007-12-11 | work=Time | url=,9171,1619552-1,00.html] ). Their first son was born in 1970Neil Swidey and Stephanie Ebbert, [ "The Making of Mitt Romney: Raising sons, rising expectations bring unexpected turns"] , "The Boston Globe", 2007-06-27. Accessed 2007-09-22.] while both were undergraduates at Brigham Young,Jill Radsken, [ "Ann Romney on her choices, family, health and future"] , "Boston Herald", 2002-12-08. Accessed 2007-09-21.] living in a $75-a-month basement apartment. [cite news | url= | title=Romney, Searching and Earnest, Set His Path in ’60s | author=David Kirkpatrick | work=The New York Times | date=2007-11-15 | accessdate=2007-11-16] When he graduated, the couple moved to Boston so that he could attend Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School; slowed down by parenthood, she later finished her undergraduate work by taking night courses at Harvard Extension School, graduating in 1975 with a Bachelor of Arts degree with a concentration in French language.

A stay-at-home mom, Romney raised the family's five boys (born between 1970 and 1981) and taught early morning scripture classes to them and other children while her husband pursued his career, first in business and then in politics.cite news |title=Ann Romney: From the Saddle to the Campaign Trail |url= |publisher=ABC News |date=2007-08-14 |accessdate=2007-08-19 ] Her personality as a political wife was viewed as superficial and a detriment to her husband's losing effort in the 1994 U.S. Senate election in Massachusetts.cite news | url= | title=The Stay-at-Home Woman Travels Well | author=Jodi Kantor | work=The New York Times | date=2007-12-16 | accessdate=2007-12-16]

Multiple sclerosis and riding

In 1998, she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. After a period of severe difficulty with the disease, a mixture of mainstream and alternative treatments has given her a lifestyle mostly without limitations; she initially used corticosteroids but then dropped them and other medications due to counterproductive side effects. She is a board member for the New England chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, and has been given the MS Society's Annual Hope Award.

She is an avid equestrian, crediting her renewed involvement in it while in Utah for much of her recovery after her multiple sclerosis diagnosis [Patricia Lasko, [ "Dressage Helps Romney Cope with Multiple Sclerosis"] , "Dressage Today", May 2004. Accessed 2007-11-22.] and for her continued ability to deal with the disease. She has received recognition in dressage as an adult amateur at the national level, including earning her 2006 Gold Medal [ [ "USDF Rider Awards List (Gold Medal)"] , United States Dressage Federation. Accessed 2007-11-22.] and 2005 Silver Medal at the Grand Prix level from the United States Dressage Federation. [ Ann Romney] , official biography from] She also sometimes competes in professional dressage events and has broken the 60% level at Grand Prix. Romney works with California trainer Jan Ebling, [ [ "Jan Ebling and Ann Romney's Liberte"] , 2002-06-21.] who schools her and her horses in dressage and works with her importing new stock from Europe. The pair qualified for the Pan-Am games in 2004.

First Lady of Massachusetts and charitable work

In January 2003, following her husband's successful campaign in the 2002 Massachusetts gubernatorial election, she became First Lady of Massachusetts, a position she held through January 2007. While Massachusetts First Lady, she was active in teenage pregnancy prevention efforts. [cite news | url=,4670,SpouseCandidates,00.html | title=Some Women Who Could Be First Lady | author=Darlene Superville | publisher=Associated Press | date=2007-10-02 | accessdate=2007-10-17]

She has been involved in a number of children's charities, including being director of the inner city-oriented Best Friends, and was given the 2006 Lifetime Achievement Award from Salt Lake City-based Operation Kids. [ [ "Operation Kids Presents Ann Romney with Lifetime Achievement Award"] ,, 2006-11-16. Accessed 2007-11-22.] She has also served as Governor's Liaison to the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives and as a board member for the United Way of America. The couple's primary residence has been in Belmont, Massachusetts, but they also have homes in New Hampshire and Utah; [ [ Romney clarifies reports on hunting] , Associated Press. Retrieved June 21, 2007.] in May 2008 they purchased a house in La Jolla, California, near where she rides horses. [cite news | url= | title=Former Mass. Gov. Romney buys home in California | author=Glen Johnson | publisher=Associated Press for "The Mercury News" | date=2008-05-24 | accessdate=2008-06-02]

2008 campaign

Ann Romney was an active campaigner in her husband's 2008 presidential campaign. [ [ "Ann Romney in South Carolina: A Family Affair"] , ABC News, 2007-07-18. Accessed 2007-11-22.] One past issue that arose involving her was her donation of $150 to Planned Parenthood in 1994. [ "Romney's Wife Gave Money to Planned Parenthood"] , ABC News, 2007-05-09] By late 2007, she had become an integral part of his campaign, and was doing more trips and appearances on her own, despite the risk that added stress would aggravate her condition.cite news | url= | title=Romney's key ingredient | author=Jennifer Liberto | work=St. Petersburg Times | date=2007-11-21 | accessdate=2007-12-01]

Her political message was often mixed with discussions of her family, her recipes, or managing her affliction; a ghost-written autobiography, "Faith in the Family", was also in the offing. Romney's television advertisements in the early primary states prominently featured her. [cite news | url= | title=Adwatch: Romney highlights family in Iowa and NH ads | author=Jim Kuhnhenn | publisher=Associated Press | work=Boston Globe | date=2007-11-19 | accessdate=2007-12-01] By the close of 2007, she was the most visible of all the Republican candidates' wives in campaigning. In May 2008, several months after the campaign ended unsuccessfully, she shared with her husband the Canterbury Medal from The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, for "refus [ing] to compromise their principles and faith" during the campaign. [cite news | url=,5143,700224763,00.html | title= Romney honored for 'Defense of Religious Liberty' | author=Lisa Riley Roche | publisher="Deseret News" | date=2008-05-10 | accessdate=2008-06-02]


External links

* [ Ann Romney's Official Website]

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