Valerie Lora Uses Her Success to Help Others
While she’s mostly known for being a radio personality for Sirius XM, she is also a successful entrepreneur, producer, and mother of two. But aside from those day to day activities, Valerie also takes time to travel to impoverished countries around the world to provide basic necessities for women and children in need. Interviewing her revealed her contagious work ethic and a dedication to her career that will inspire you to live out your dreams.
During our interview, Valerie shares her journey as a radio personality. She also talks about the importance of giving back and she encourages young women to follow their dreams.
How was your childhood? What experiences helped shape the person you are today?
I would say I had a pretty decent childhood. The only thing that was a little bit tough was being first generation here in the United States. Because of the language barrier, I had to figure out some things on my own. Another challenge I had to deal with was figuring out where I fit in. I grew up in Newark, New Jersey in a predominately Black neighborhood. Among Spanish people I wasn’t light enough, but I also wasn’t black enough for my black friends, so I was always kind of in the middle. But none of those experiences were too crazy or traumatic. Growing up in Newark, I saw how a lot of kids I grew up with either had parents that had to work four or five jobs to survive or their parents were strung out on drugs. So even though the environment I was in wasn’t the best, at home I had a very loving Christian family.
Did you experience insecurities growing up? If so, how did you overcome them or how are you dealing with them today?
As a kid there weren’t many Spanish people in my classes because it was a predominately Black neighborhood. So there was a lot of bullying as far as “you think you’re cute.” I also had girls that would stick gum in my hair. I would say my insecurities were just normal things kids go through. To overcome that, I would pick the meanest girl in the room and become friends with her so she could fight all my battles. And honestly, I found myself doing that a lot as a kid. That’s how I survived the bullying.
What inspired you to become a radio personality? And what steps did you take to get to where you are today?
I think radio kind of found me. My first stage was in church, that was the first time I stepped onto a stage and heard applause afterwards. Originally, I wanted to become an actress. I would participate in plays at my church and I enjoyed it so much that I went to a performing arts high school and majored in theater. After that, I started going to auditions to be an actress. But being first generation, my parents didn’t have the skills to take me to auditions or pay for comp cards. So I was challenged to figure it out on my own. I ended up going to college for production. While there, I did college radio and then I interned at BET and got hired to work for a segment called Rap City. With all the info I got from working with BET, I turned to YouTube and produced my own show called the “Friday Hip-Hop Report.” Because of my views from my YouTube show I gained a position at Sirius XM and I’ve been there for over 6 years now.
What do you find to be most rewarding aspect of your career?
The most rewarding thing about my career is being able to have access to different people that allow me to help others. I’ve been able to travel to different countries throughout the world like Thailand, Dominican Republic and Haiti to help children and mothers, mostly by bringing them basic supplies like water, sneakers, slippers etc.
What advice can you give to girls who want to get into the entertainment business?
I would say find your voice, be consistent, and don’t be discouraged. A lot of times we have great ideas that someone may have thought of first. But I feel like there’s enough room for everybody. As long as you are a good person and you’re humble and you work towards your goal everyday there’s nothing you can’t obtain.
What can we expect to see from you in the future?
You can expect to see more T.V. stuff. I just did a show with Charlemagne, Remy Ma, B.Dot and Taxtone discussing the nominees for the 2016 BET Awards. It’s an open forum table discussion and I’ve also been doing a lot of auditions for a few other shows.
To learn more about Valerie check her out on Instagram @valerielora. And also check out her websites: mommydistrict.com, digiartworks.com, and valerielora.com. To be featured, contact us.