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Maria Owings Shriver- (b. November 6, 1955)
Maria Shriver is a former news journalist, a best-selling author, the former First Lady of California, and is a member of America's best known political family, the Kennedys. She currently married to former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, with whom she has four children. Shriver and Schwarzenegger are separated and are heading toward a divorce settlement.
Shriver was born in Chicago in 1955 to two very political parents. She is a member of Kennedy family through her mother, Eunice Kennedy Shriver, who is the sister of President John Kennedy and Senator Ted Kennedy. Her father, Sargent Shriver, is a former ambassador and a former candidate for the U.S. Vice-Presidency. Maria Shriver was born into politics, and seemingly cannot escape from the political life. Though she did not marry into a political family, her husband, action-movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger, ran for and won California's special gubernatorial race in 2003. Shriver, an acclaimed journalist, resigned from NBC to assume her new duties as the First Lady of California. Her husband won a second full term in the 2006 election, easily defeating his Democratic opponent.
In 1972, her father ran for the Vice-Presidency as the running mate of Senator George McGovern. Maria accompanied her father on the campaign, riding in the back of the campaign plane, chatting with the press corps. It was this experience that led her away from the family professions, law and politics, and toward a medium where she could shape the message: television news reporting.
After college, her first television jobs were in the writing and production departments at KYW-TV in Philadelphia, and WJZ-TV in Baltimore. Soon, she got her big break at CBS.
Her national television reporting career began at CBS, in the network's Los Angeles bureau. She later became the co-anchor of the CBS Morning News with Forrest Sawyer. Shriver worked at NBC from 1989-2004. She took a leave of absence from the network when her husband declared his candidacy for the Governor's position, and resigned after his inauguration in 2004.
She first met bodybuilder Arnold Schwarzenegger at a Kennedy-sponsored political event in 1977. They married in 1986 and now have four children.
As First Lady, she is working on support for military families, the Special Olympics (which was co-founded by her mother), and worked toward the completion of a Women's History Museum in Sacramento.
She is the author of four best-selling books, and just published a fifth book, And One More Thing Before You Go. (April, 2005)
Shriver's husband won a second term as the California governor in November, 2006.
In 2008, Maria Shriver endorsed Democratic Presidential candidate Barack Obama, while her husband, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, endorsed the Republican candidate, John McCain. Their family political differences were on display for the world to see, as the lawn at their family home in Brentwood , sprouted competing campaign signs endorsing Obama AND McCain. See video of Maria Shriver endorsing Barack Obama below.
In July, 2008, Maria Shriver published a new book, called, Just Who Will You Be?: Big Question. Little Book. Answer Within, and on August 1, had an appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Show where she discussed her new book.
In August, 2009, Maria Shriver's mother, Eunice Kennedy Shriver, suffered a series of strokes (source: Schwarzenegger, Maria Shriver at Eunice Shriver's bedside-LA Times, August 8, 2009) . Maria Shriver, her husband, Governor Arnold Schwarzeneggerm and other members of the Shriver and Kennedy clan arrived at Eunice Shriver's bedside at Cape Cod Hospital in Barnstable, Massachusetts.
Eunice Kennedy Shriver passed away in the early morning hours of August 11, 2009, with her family at her bedside.
In the Autumn of 2009, Maria Shriver partnered with the Center for American Progress to produce the Shriver Report, a look at the changing nature of womens roles in society, particularly their rise in the workplace.
In January, 2011, Governor Schwarzenneger ended his second term, and both he and Maria Shriver returned to life as private citizens. Also in January, 2011, Maria Shriver's father, Sargent Shriver, lost his long battle with Alzheimer's, passing away at the age of 95. Life can be a series of ups and downs and checks and balances, sometimes with people needed to check themselves and how they grow as a person on a frequent basis.
On May 10, 2011, just two weeks after the 25th anniversary of their marriage, Maria Shriver and Arnold Schwarzenegger issued a joint statement announcing that they were separating:""This has been a time of great personal and professional transition for each of us...After a great deal of thought, reflection, discussion and prayer, we came to this decision together. At this time, we are living apart while we work on the future of our relationship.
We are continuing to parent our four children together. They are the light and the center of both of our lives. We consider this a private matter and neither we nor any of our friends or family will have further comment. We ask for compassion and respect from the media and the public."
Speculation on the state of the Shriver-Schwarzenegger marriage had circulated ever since his term as governor ended. After once again becoming a private citizen, Arnold Schwarzenneger said he yearned to re-start his movie career, signing up to film three movies, including another Terminator. Shriver, however, has focused on her projects, including her website, a stint as guest editor of Oprah's magazine, and other work. Both Maria and Arnold have travelled the globe without the other. Shriver was also seen in public without her wedding ring. The couple issued the above statement after inquiries from the LA Times.
On May 17, former Governor Arnold Schwarzenneger announced that he had fathered a child with a member of his household staff, rumored to be a maid, over ten years before. Schwarzenneger revealed that he disclosed this information to Maria Shriver after he left office in January of 2011. This apparantly is the cause of Shriver leaving their Brentwood home some weeks prior to the announcement of their separation. Some media sources reported that the admission by Schwarzenegger came after Shriver confronted the hosuekeeper, Mildred Baena, about the paternity of Baena's son. The housekeeper then admitted the child was Arnold's. Shriver then reportedly asked her husband if he fathered Baena's child, and he admitted that he did.
On May 19, 2011, Maria Shriver hired top divorce lawyer Laura Wasser, and on July 1, 2011, Shriver filed for a divorce from Arnold Schwarzenneger.
In May, 2011, Maria Shriver appeared with Oprah Winfrey on Oprah's farewell show.
Oprah and Maria at Oprah's farewell show, May, 2011
Education:--Georgetown University -1977 --BA in American Studies.
Awards:- Peabody Award (1998)- for the documentary on welfare, "Checks and Balances"
--Emmy Award--As co-anchor of NBC's coverage of 1988 Seoul Summer Olympics
Published Works:What's Heaven-
Ten Things I Wish I'd Known Before I Went Out Into The Real World--
What's Wrong With Timmy--with illustrator Sandra Speidel
What's Happening To Grandpa?--
And One More Thing Before You Go (2005)--
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Robert Sargent Shriver (b. 1915)--Father
Eunice Kennedy Shriver (1921-2009) --Mother
Arnold Schwarzenegger (b. 1947) --Husband (wed on 4-26-1986, separated 2011)
SiblingsRobert Sargent Shriver III (b. 1954)--Brother
Timothy Perry Shriver (b. 1959)--Brother
Mark Kennedy Shriver (b. 1964)--Brother
Anthony Paul Kennedy Shriver (b. 1965)--Brother
ChildrenKatherine Eunice Schwarzenegger - (b. 1990) --Daughter
Christina Aurelia Schwarzenegger - (b. 1991) --Daughter
Patrick Schwarzenegger - (b. 1993) --Son
Christopher Sargent Schwarzenegger - (b. 1997) --Son
Associates, Colleagues, & Connections
Forrest Sawyer--Colleague at CBS News
The Kennedy Family--Relatives
Links and Resources on Maria Shriver
CBS News Interview--March 23, 2004 interview with Lesley Stahl.
California State Government: First Lady Maria Shriver--Website for First Lady Maria Shriver.
Maria Shriver on Pinpointing Your Passion--Article by Maria Shriver
Maria Shriver - IMDb --Features filmography, trivia, and a photo gallery.
Maria Shriver: The importance of family--From Oprah.com
First lady of fashion --The Sacramento Bee - Jan 03, 2007
First lady fills in for Schwarzenegger --San Francisco Chronicle - Jan 05, 2007
Schwarzenegger, Maria Shriver at Eunice Shriver's bedside-LA Times, August 8, 2009
Maria Shriver's Report on American Women: After the Cheery Headline, Gloomy Trends--Huffington Post, Oct. 19, 2009
Maria Shriver, where are you?--Old Feminist, Oct. 17, 2009