Shawn Johnson East is a former Olympic Gold Medalist, she's a New York Times best-selling author. She's an entrepreneur operating numerous businesses. She's a philanthropist involved in a number of philanthropic activities working with animal and children’s charities, cancer charities, and advocates of health and wellness initiatives. She's also a wife and a mother of a beautiful little girl named Drew.
Andrew East is an American football long snapper who's currently a free agent. He played college football at Vanderbilt, and has also had multiple stints with various NFL teams. He's an engineer, an investor and a entrepreneur creating a brand as The East Family.
From the moment Shawn and Andrew walked in the door for a Brentwood Lifestyle photo shoot, we knew it was going to be a lovely day. Their smiles lit up the room as they greeted the crew. After rounds of greetings, and two adorable and boisterous dogs jumping all over them, to which they happily gave their time and affection, it was time for work.
Work is a loose term when you’re with Shawn and Andrew. Both are so accomplished at their trade and work so hard in their everyday lives, coming to a photo shoot is a time to relax, let loose and have fun. Very engaging and they clearly have a wonderful relationship, watching them giggle, swoon and banter was “relationship goals” to the rest of us. They even did an odds gamble about jumping in the pool to which Shawn lost. Andrew knew his wife couldn’t jump in the pool, hair and makeup done, and the shoot was just the start of their day, which included a press conference, so he took one for the team. Andrew jumped in fully clothed to the astonished Shawn and made us all laugh.
Shawn has not only been open about her accomplishments in her life but she also speaks about her struggles. After experiencing a miscarriage in 2017, Shawn says she battled with postpartum depression. She’s recently spoken out to the press about her eating disorder and negative body image as an Olympic athlete and as an adult.
Most recently, Shawn and Andrew started their our own coffee company. They gathered up everything they learned about coffee over the years and designed their brand–UniQorn coffee. It’s a pure form of coffee sourced from some of the world’s highest quality farms, sun-dried and roasted to perfection.
We got the opportunity to ask Shawn and Andrew some fun questions about their life and their coffee.
Shawn, you’ve done it all: Olympic Gold Medalist, Dancing with the Stars, YouTube Channel, influencer, written books, numerous endorsements, TV appearances, charity work, business woman, being a wife and now a mom—and so much more! What have you found to be the most challenging? The most rewarding?
Being a mom, being a wife, and being able to be part of a business that allows me to stay home and be both of those.
Tell us about your new coffee line, UniQorn Coffee.
Andrew: UniQorn is one of our favorite projects yet. We partnered with our friends Drs. Josh and Chelsea Axe, who we actually first met at a coffee shop. They’re health food geeks. We created it because we wanted to give people all the tools needed to create memorable moments in their lives. Because for us, coffee’s a big part of that.
Shawn: Going through the process of finding the highest quality coffee that’s also responsibly sourced and that we just love the taste of was also a really fun challenge.
How did you come up with the name?
Shawn: The brand is all about having special moments with special people in your life. Those magical moments and those meaningful relationships are rare, which made us think of unicorns. And so UniQorn Coffee came to be!
What makes it special? Favorite blend?
Shawn: Santa Monica Mornings for me. It makes an amazing oat milk cappuccino, and it reminds me of the special time we spent in LA!
Andrew: I always thought I preferred dark roast coffee, but I’ve really been loving our Santa Monica Mornings light roast, too. The beans are from Honduras. I’m a big fan of using that with a Chemex.
Tell everyone how you two met.
Andrew: We first met through my brother, Guy, who was an Olympic-level athlete. He met Shawn at the London Olympics and thought that we might be a good fit. He was right, and here we are!
What is it like being new parents?
Shawn: It is, without a doubt, the greatest job in the entire world. Being able to see a tiny human grow up in front of your eyes is just so special. And being home with her every day is pretty cool, too.
Andrew: So far, my experience is that it’s an incredibly humbling challenge. But it’s by far the most fun, most rewarding experience we’ve ever had.
It’s WAY early to ask, but do you see yourself pushing Drew to become a gymnast?
Shawn: Absolutely not. I will encourage her to be whatever she wants to be and to try all sports and hobbies and activities, and I’ll be her biggest cheerleader in whatever that is.
What do you like about living in Nashville? Is this where you would like to raise Drew? Plans for more kids?
Shawn: Nashville is the perfect home for us. We’ve been here 10 years, and it’s the perfect mix of a big city that still feels small. Everyone is so friendly, and the possibilities here are endless—you feel encouraged to do anything and everything here. So yes, we want to raise Drew here, and future siblings, as well!
Andrew, you were a long snapper at Vanderbilt. Prior to COVID-19, did you find yourself a fan of the team? Going to games? Is that why you came back to Nashville?
I actually hadn’t heard of Vandy before I started my recruiting process, which was my junior year of high school. I loved every second I was there. I haven’t been able to go to many games, unfortunately, but I’m looking forward to more! I’ll be a lifelong fan, for sure.
Andrew, what is your favorite thing about Shawn? What is your biggest pet peeve?
My favorite thing about Shawn is her giggle. And I do whatever I can to hear it as often as I can. Biggest pet peeve is that she won’t let me sleep on my back, because she claims I snore...
Shawn, what is your favorite thing about Andrew? What is your biggest pet peeve?
My favorite thing is he’s so unapologetically himself. He doesn’t care what anybody says! He’s going to be him, and he’ll encourage you to be you—which I love, especially as it applies to raising our daughter. And my favorite thing is also kind of my pet peeve, because he’s just a big kid at heart. It’s like having two kids in the house!
You both seem to have a lot of fun together. How do you balance it all? Working together? Doing everything together?
Shawn: If only you could see us on a daily basis! Haha. No, but we’re really good at not keeping any emotion in. We have to operate that way. It’s not like we spend our days apart and only see each other for the good parts, the highlights. We deal with our issues as they come. Definitely a 'work hard, play hard' mentality, I think!
Andrew: We pretty much spend every waking second together, which has its own unique challenges, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I think we both do a good job of approaching things as learning experiences as opposed to trying to direct or manage things ourselves, which makes it easier.