Laurine Press was born and raised in Athens, GA but spent most summers outside of Atlanta with scores of relatives. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from Hampton Institute and went on to study, Guidance and Counseling and Gerontology and later received a Masters of Business Administration from Hampton University. She is and avid patron of the arts and loves, loves, loves genealogy. Laurine worked for nearly 40 years in Parks, Recreation and Tourism where she worked with the community to develop the first Master Plan for Parks and Recreation for the City of Hampton. The 2020 plan is still in use and was the conceptual foundation for local neighborhood and community centers, neighborhood and community parks improving access to recreational amenities throughout the city. In retirement she continues her family research and encourages others to explore and share the treasures of their past. As a child, Laurine was trained to use oratorical skills competitively, opening to her the wonderful world of the spoken word. She would later develop her skills as a poet and writer while honing her love of storytelling. Now in retirement, she has the joy of enhancing her love of the arts and encouraging others to find their hidden gifts.