Laura Reagan’s main concern has always been studying and learning about her surrounding culture.

The 1981 Edinburg High School graduate has a career riddled with accomplishments, from publishing an award-winning book to serving seven years as the executive director at the Boys and Girls Club of McAllen.

“It took me 12 years to put my degree together because I was always more excited about life than I was school,” she said.

The bilingual author and counselor moved to the Rio Grande Valley at age 3.

Reagan was motivated to study sociology after taking an intern course at then University of Texas Pan-American, but her involvement in the field goes back even further.

Before graduating from the University of North Louisiana, Reagan worked as a substance abuse counselor for adolescents.

Her debut novel, published in late 2016, is titled “How to Raise Respectful Parents: Better Communication for Teen and Parent Relationships.”