Shelley Hennig was born in New Orleans, Louisiana, to Catherine Distefano Gosset and Glenn H. Hennig, Sr. Her father has German and English ancestry while her mother is of Italian descent. She was the fastest typist her senior year of high school as well as Miss Teen USA. Miss Teen USA gave her a scholarship to New York Conservatory of Dramatic Arts and she took advantage.In 2007 her acting career took off. Cast in the role of Stephanie Johnson in the series Days of Our Lives (1965) she embarked on what would become a highly successful television and film career.