Guampedia’s First Managing Editor

Shannon J. Murphy (1953 – ) was the Managing Editor of, from its planning stages in 2002 until her retirement in June 2019. She continues to contribute to Guampedia as an editor.

Murphy earned a BA in communications with a minor in anthropology from the University of Guam in 1980. She went back to earn a graduate certificate in Micronesian Studies from the University of Guam in 2007.

Murphy has an extensive professional background in journalism, particularly pertaining to Guam and the Micronesian region. Her roots in Guam journalism date back to her experience as reporter, feature writer and editor at the Pacific Daily News from 1980 to 1985 and then later as business, local news, and feature editor from 1990 to 1995.

She also founded, edited and published San Francisco based Gaseta, a newspaper for CHamorus who live away from Guam, from 1985 to 1989. She was also the AP regional correspondent from 1992 to 1995 and the CNN regional correspondent from 2000 to 2004.

Murphy was the chief of staff for Senator Carlotta Leon Guerrero at the Guam Legislature who chaired the Legislative Committee on Transportation, Telecommunications and Micronesian Affairs from 1995 to 2000. She then became the co-executive director of Ayuda Foundation along with Leon Guerrero. Ayuda Foundation is a regional health support organization. At the Ayuda Foundation she successfully helped to create a girl’s club, Island Girl Power, an early literacy partnering program, Reach Out and Read, with the Department of Public Health, as well as provide medical relief to Micronesian island residents after typhoons or other disasters.

Murphy is the daughter of well-known late Guam journalist and Pacific Daily News columnist, Joe Murphy and teacher Marion Murphy. She is one of their eight children, most who have lived on Guam since 1966.

She is married to Robert Wescom and lives in Sånta Rita-Sumai. Murphy has three children- Leo Babauta, Katrina Babauta Barnett, and Ana Babauta – and 11 grandchildren – Chloe, Justin, Samantha, Rain, Maia, Lennon, Isabella, Seth, Blake, Noelle, and Joey Lucia.

Guampedia entries by Shannon J. Murphy