Lauren Davis Turner
Lauren Turner is a financial services marketing professional working on loyalty marketing campaigns for American Express. She has lived in New York City for the last seven years. She grew up in Texarkana and graduated from Pleasant Grove High School in 2016. Lauren received her Master of Business Administration from Montclair State University and her Bachelor of Arts from The King’s College. She interned with Marvel Entertainment, where she designed marketing materials for upcoming launches.
Lauren is a volunteer for the New York Junior League (NYJL), where she serves as a Vice-Chair of the Golden Tree Committee, an annual fundraiser to support the efforts of NYJL. She received the NYJL Provisional on The Move award in 2022 for her character, leadership, and volunteerism.
She and her husband, Ryan, reside on the Upper East Side in Manhattan, where they love spending time in Central Park, traveling, trying new restaurants around the city, and delving into the pages of her latest book club reads.
What is your favorite Texarkana memory?
My favorite memories of Texarkana involve time spent with my sister Kathryn, whether it’s simple memories of growing up or more recent ones like getting to go to her debutante ball at Texarkana Country Club. Despite being four years apart and never getting to attend high school or middle school together, we did a lot of the same activities and have similar interests. We were both Pleasant Grove Showstoppers, both danced at JMSD, and were both Editor-In-Chief of the Hawk yearbook at Pleasant Grove. Even though we weren’t there at the same time, we both had the same experiences of performing Magnificent Seven at the PAC and getting to see our yearbook in print for the first time. She was always there, either in the stands watching me, or I was Facetiming in to see her perform. Now that we are both older, it’s always fun to reminisce on those shared experiences.
Where was your favorite place to eat in Texarkana?
This is a tough question. When I visit Texarkana, there is always a mini food tour of the places I love before I fly back to New York. First is Julie’s Deli for their white chocolate strawberry cake. I love it so much that it was the cake I wanted for my wedding. My non-Texarkana-native husband seconds this as well and wishes he could have their chicken tetrazzini weekly.
Next is Amigo Juans for their queso. So many birthdays and good memories were spent there! On the weekends in high school, I would order ahead just their queso to pick up (Sorry, Mom and Dad for spoiling dinner)!
Third, this one opened long after I moved from Texarkana, is Local Habit. I love stopping by when I visit. I wished they would have been around when I was growing up. It is now a must-visit for me when I am in town. I’m already looking forward to grabbing one of their craft lattes when I am in town next!
Were you a Hawk, Leopard, Razorback, or Tiger?
Pleasant Grove Hawk. I don’t have a rivalry story in particular, but there was nothing like Fridays in the fall. Even in kindergarten, I knew I wanted to be a Showstopper and dance under the ‘Friday Night Lights’ at Pleasant Grove. People ask what I miss about living in Texas, and my immediate response is always Friday football games. There is truly nothing like football in Texas.
Who is someone from Texarkana who impacted your life?
Ann Nicholas, or “Miss Ann” to those who have been taught by her. I could write a novel on how dance and her instruction at Judith McCarty School of Dance impacted my life. I am so grateful for the life lessons learned through my dance classes—especially ballet. Miss Ann instilled in me the values of discipline and dedication, which are not only crucial in the world of dance but in life as well. She taught me that success is not achieved overnight; it requires relentless practice and unwavering commitment. These lessons have been invaluable as I pursued my academic and professional goals.
What do you think makes Texarkana famous?
I have always had such a fondness for Texarkana’s downtown. After a project in school, I continued to fall in love with all those buildings and loved volunteering at The Ace of Clubs House. One of the most remarkable aspects of Texarkana’s fame is its dedication to preserving its history. These well-preserved buildings not only showcase the city’s history but also offer a glimpse into the lives of those who lived here in times past.
The Perot Theatre is another incredible building. Its grandeur and architectural splendor rival some of the best theaters in the country. The Perot Theatre is not just a place for entertainment; it’s a symbol of Texarkana’s cultural significance and its dedication to the arts. My grandparents, Beverly and Paul Tye, took me to see my first musical at The Perot as a child, and I can’t believe that I got to grow up performing all of my recitals and renditions of The Nutcracker Ballet at The Perot.
I still have all my downtown Texarkana Christmas ornaments that my mother bought me that the Texarkana Chamber of Commerce sold when I was younger.
What is your nickname for Texarkana?
What words do you live by?
In elementary school, I had the honor of being taught by Jeanette Womack. Whether we were trying to figure out a problem or brainstorm an idea for a project, she always said, “persevere.” That word has stuck with me since. Mrs. Womack’s emphasis on perseverance taught me that success is not always immediate, but it can be achieved through continuous effort and unwavering resolve.
TXK Roots is Texarkana Magazine’s forum to highlight and honor Texarkana natives who have accomplished big things in the world. These folks may have relocated, but they took the values, education, work ethic and creativity instilled in them by growing up in this unique border city and used these qualities to blaze extraordinary trails. We asked them to share their thoughts about growing up here. No matter how far from Texarkana they may find themselves, we will always consider them our neighbors and we are proud to claim them as forever members of our extended Texarkana community. After all, “everyone is famous in their hometown!”