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Shannon Mcnamara

Founder at SHARE in Africa

Student at The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre

Social Media Intern at The Blaze

Editorial Intern at James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy -- Rice University

Student, Rice University


Shannon attends Rice University, in Houston, Texas.  She founded SHARE in 2008 and has traveled to Tanzania each summer since then.  In the USA Shannon has spread awareness for SHARE by giving over 40 presentations across the country.  Shannon is the founder of the SHARE Campus Chapter at Rice University.


In addition to her work with SHARE, Shannon has served on the United Nations Teen Advisory Board to promote youth involvement in the Girl Up campaign. She was also named a 2011-12 Global Teen Leader for the We Are Family Foundation’s Three Dot Dash Initiative. Shannon was a National Girl Scout Consultant for Girl Scouts of the USA. 


Prior to her service work in Africa, Shannon volunteered in Peru, Costa Rica, and India.  Shannon's efforts have been recognized on the national and international level.

She is an active role model for her friends and peers. Shannon believes that she has a responsibility to use her voice to advocate for girls around the globe who have not had access to many opportunities afforded women in the United States. In 2008, Shannon founded the nonprofit SHARE (Shannon’s After-School Reading Exchange) to empower African girls through education and overcome cultural bias that discourages female literacy.


SHARE brought 500 pounds of books to a Tanzanian community in the first year and has since donated 33,000 books to schools in Africa impacting 8,000 students and teachers. Shannon has traveled to Bukoba, Tanzania for the past 5 summers. When Shannon is not in Africa working directly with students, she advocates for the cause with the motto “today a reader, tomorrow a leader,” and works on her campus chapter of SHARE at Rice University. Through public speaking engagements across the country, Shannon has reached over 7,000 people most recently on International Women’s Day in March 2011 when she gave an address at the White House with First Lady Michelle Obama about the benefits of helping impoverished girls.


In 2011, she received the generation On Hasbro Community Action Hero award. 

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