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Shandi Finnessey            

Miss USA 2004, Actress, Model & Television Hostess

Shandi Finnessey is an American actress, model, TV host, and beauty queen. She is best known for winning the Miss USA title, as Miss Missouri USA. She previously held the title of Miss Missouri 2002 and competed in Miss America, where she won a preliminary award.

During one of the most watched Miss USA competitions, Shandi Finnessey was crowned Miss USA 2004 in the famed Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, CA. Afterward, Shandi spent her year championing the official causes of MISS USA, which are breast and ovarian cancer education, research, and legislation. She traveled nationally and abroad as an advocate for organizations such as the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, and Gildas Club, among others. To date, she has helped to raise over 30 million dollars for breast and ovarian cancer research. Her year as Miss USA took her all over the country as well as to Ecuador, Korea, Thailand, Cuba, St. Maarten, and Germany.

Shandi joined forces with Wayne Newton and the USO in support of our servicemen and women. As she toured the US and abroad visiting our military troops at various bases, hospitals and celebrations, she expressed a deep appreciation for their services. With the help of the USO, Shandi was able to bring a piece of home to our men and women who serve our country.

Shandi is an honors graduate from Lindenwood University where she received a BS in Psychology, which she completed in only three and a half years. There, Finnessey conducted research on androgyny that proved significant and was published in the SEPA Journal. She began working on her Masters in Counseling but postponed her studies after becoming Miss USA.

Dedicated to helping children and people with disabilities, Shandi works to promote inclusion of individuals with mental challenges. One of her proudest achievements was publishing a children's book on this very subject titled The Furrtails. Infinity Publishing awarded the distinguished AWMAD for Authors Who Make a Difference to her children's book. She is currently working on her second children's book titled Suzanna the Banana.

Shandi has been a television host on GSN, co-hosting its highest-rated game show, Lingo (2005-2007), with Chuck Woolery, as well as hosting the late night live game show Playmania. Shandi has also been a news correspondent for Entertainment Tonight and ENTV Minute.

In addition to her personal projects, Finnessey has also joined up with 2003 Miss USA winner, Susie Castillo, to start a blog and YouTube channel. Pageantology101 offers their pageant and entertainment industry expertise, while hoping to inspire others to be confident, supportive, empowered and health-conscience individuals.

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