I Have To Be Me Pic


Today we live in a world where we can’t be afraid to adapt or change, from something that is traditional (that you are comfortable with); to something a little bit non-traditional (because you love it, even though you may stand out).

I would like to introduce you to Miss Lauren Oliver, a very intelligent and Beautiful young lady; that loves to play the Oboe in her “Classic Band & Field Lacrosse”.

These are two activities that are not normally affiliated with young Afro-American girls today that are standing about 5′ 9″ 155 pounds. The now High School Freshman sensation, is use to holding her own against local High School Junior Varsity players; while being in Middle School only a few months ago.

Lauren Oliver has always played up against older girls, while she was in 7th & 8th grade; on her traveling AAU Lacrosse Team. She has gotten used to seeing very few girls (if any), that looked like her. When asked about this during a recent interview, she strongly replied “I don’t have a problem with it; and no she doesn’t feel out of place”…..

Lauren’s actual first love was Tennis, but found Lacrosse while trying to find other sports to play; even though her “Body” probably was more suited to play “Girls Basketball or Softball” (she doesn’t really like those two sports).

Lauren fell in love with the Sport of Lacrosse, even though most Afro-American girls her size & age; are playing more traditional sports or being a Cheerleader. The young Miss Oliver isn’t just another “Pretty Face” in the crowd, but what sets her apart from the norm is her personal drive. She speaks a lot older than her actual age, and is not afraid to tell you about becoming a “Civil Engineer” one day…

Miss Lauren was not trying to make a statement or anything, when she made the choice to commit to playing the sport she now loves (Lacrosse); it just fits her like a pair of “Fine Italian Leather Expensive Gloves” (she just knew this is what she wanted to do). She has already drawn some interest from a college in South Carolina, while not even entering high school yet; during this past Summer AAU Season…

First and foremost she loves being a big sister, to her 10 year old brother Evan; even though Lauren is only 14 years old herself. Lauren feels that she must first be someone that her brother Evan can respect & look up to; that’s why she has placed “High Standards” on herself! Yes there are normal disagreements with her little Soccer playing brother Evan, with the usual friendly competitive competition on the side between them (like most sisters & brothers in most households); but they both fuel that competitive nature in each other.

Mr. Evan Oliver maybe a lot smaller than his big sister Lauren Oliver, but he is not backing down to her at all.

Lauren does understand in life (like in sports), the more prepared you are to face the challenges; the more successful you will become at the end. This is a young lady who knows what she wants, and isn’t afraid to go and get it; a quality that is hard to find today in most young girls her age. She has no “Self-Esteem” issues, because she knows who she is; and what she wants out of life. . I’m sure qualities she sees in her “Role Model” daily (Mrs. Michelle Oliver)… A former athlete herself in Track & Field, which after her own high school graduation; she attended & proudly graduated from Virginia State University (a very proud HBC). This is where Michelle met her future husband, Mr. Clarence Oliver…

So Lauren the Honor Roll Student from Middle School, took her act to High School (Glen Allen High School) this past summer; but nothing in her life has really changed but the address of her school. Lauren still enjoys playing her Oboe, which is a “Wood Wind” Instrument; in her Classic Band. She loves the sound that this unique instrument makes, it reflects her “Softer” side; and it actually brings balance to her “tough athletic lifestyle”.

Lauren’s most recent accomplishments are:


  1. Being a participant in the “Maggie L. Walker Summer Leadership Institute.”


  1. Volunteer her time at the “Virginia Education Association.”


  1. Summer Volun-teen, a program in the “Henrico County Library.”


  1. She has already obtained 60 of her 80 mandatory requirement volunteer hours (to graduate high school), before she entered the 9th year; which was the start of this fall school year at Glen Allen High School.


Lauren was raised by two loving parents (Clarence & Michelle Oliver), that believes in being “Educated”; and her having “Accountability” in her life. They know for their daughter to succeed in life, she has to put in the work; then success will be easily achievable (another person can’t do your “Push Ups for you”).

Lauren see every day how her “Parents Grind”, both graduating College; and both being “Self Employed” in their own independent businesses.

The future for this young lady is so bright it’s “Scary”, but once again people she holds herself to a “Higher Standard” then most; and she’s not afraid to “Dream Big to Achieve Big.”

If Miss Lauren ever got into Politics in her adult life (after college), I have a pretty good idea who the “First Afro-American Female President could be” (I’m just saying people)…. But in the meantime Lauren Oliver, please enjoy your youth & play your video games; and listen to her music / watch your TV.

We at Gigaré Lifestyle Magazine wish you nothing but the best young lady, because we are pretty sure this won’t be the last time; that we will hear about you.

It was an Honor & Pleasure to share your unique life story (so far), with our readers. Stay Encouraged & Blessed always Oliver Family!



Coach Tony Branch

Contributing Sports Writer to GLM