Here is a brief bio of Ann Romney, and information about her marriage to Mitt Romney, education, volunteerism, illnesses, and her roles in Election 2012 and political controversies.
Mitt Romney married Ann Lois Davies on March 21, 1969. He was 22 and she was 19. His proposal, however, came nearly four years earlier, in June of 1965. Ann was 16 and the couple had been dating for several months.Romney's 2012 campaign website said the couple "first met in elementary school when he was a Cub Scout; he remembers tossing pebbles at her when she rode by on a horse. When they met again years later at a friend’s house, he was smitten."
Mitt Romney recalled in a 2006 speech that he "didn't want to be anywhere else but with Ann. I wanted to be with her all the time and couldn't imagine being anywhere else besides being with her. And so, at the senior prom, as we danced a little bit, we went outside of the school and I turned to her and said, 'Ann, would you marry me?' And she said, 'Yes.'"
Ann Romney Education
Ann Romney earned a bachelor of arts degree in French from Brigham Young University in August of 1976. She is a graduate of the Kingswood School in Bloomfield Hills, Mich.
Ann Romney Illness
Ann Romney was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1998. She said alternative therapy helped her battle the disease into remission. In 2008, she was found to have breast cancer and underwent a lumpectomy.
Ann Romney Volunteerism
Ann Romney has helped to raise awareness of multiple sclerosis since being diagnosed with the disease, and served on the board of the New England Chapter of the MS Society. She has raised money for advocacy and research into the disease.
Ann Romney has also volunteered for the United Way and its Faith & Action committee, which is designed to raise money for urban churches and work with troubled children.
She has been involved with several other organizations that aid disadvantaged children, including Right to Play, Best Friends, Partners for Youth with Disabilities, Boston Ten Point Coalition and the Perkins School for the Blind.
Ann Romney Controversy
Ann Romney made news in April 2012 when Democratic strategist and cable-television pundit Hilary Rosen criticized her for having "never worked a day in her life."
"She’s never really dealt with the kinds of economic issues that a majority of the women in this country are facing," Rosen said.
Rosen later attempted to soften her remarks by saying that Mitt Romney should not portray his wife as speaking for women because she has not faced financial hardships and does not understand blue-collar Americans.
"As a mom I know that raising children is the hardest job there is. As a pundit, I know my words on CNN last night were poorly chosen," Rosen said.Ann Romney responded on Twitter by stating: "I made a choice to stay home and raise five boys. Believe me, it was hard work."
Mitt Romney was the wealthiest candidate in the 2012 presidential race, according to his personal financial disclosures. He was worth between $85 million and $264 million, ranking him as being among the 3,140 richest individuals in the United States.