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Laura Posada

Immigrant Archive Project
Laura Posada is a Puerto Rican TV personality and philanthropist. Laura is also married to former New York Yankees star catcher Jorge Posada. After their first-born son Jorge Luis was born with craniosynostosis, a condition involving the premature fusion of the skull, Laura and Jorge Posada established a foundation which helps fund research for the condition and offers family support.
Show transcript
00:00
You're an attorney.
00:01
You married your husband who's playing with the Yankees.
00:04
You're like on top of the world, like everything is perfect
00:08
And um the doctor said, oh, well, we need to tell you that your
00:12
son has CSIS and, and that was the worst moment of my life right
00:16
there.
00:22
Laura, let's, let's begin the way we do with everyone with
00:26
your name and your nationality.
00:28
My name is Laura Posada and I'm from San Juan, Puerto Rico and
00:32
Laura, you were, you were raised in San Juan, I was raised in
00:35
San Juan, Puerto Rico.
00:36
Uh from the time I was born until I was 17 years old.
00:41
What can you tell me about your childhood in Puerto Rico?
00:43
Take me back to that time.
00:45
Um I think I had a good childhood.
00:48
Uh my mom was a stay at home mom and my dad used to work all the
00:52
time.
00:53
Um I didn't have all the toys that I wanted and I didn't have
00:58
all the things that I wanted.
01:00
But um you know, I was happy uh when I got older and I was a teenager
01:05
it was a little tougher because my dad was extremely strict
01:10
and um if I wanted to participate in sports or any extracurricular
01:15
activities or modeling, which I started doing when I was 14
01:19
years old.
01:20
Um I had to have all a s in school.
01:22
So it was very tough, especially because my sister who is five
01:26
years older than me, um she was like a super, super intense
01:32
student, like she had her grade point average was probably
01:35
98.5.
01:37
Um And you know, when it came time for me to come to, to her teachers
01:43
they were expecting, you know, the same results from me.
01:46
And I was like, oh my God, no pressure, you know, what a tough
01:49
act to follow.
01:50
So it was tough.
01:51
And my brother was really smart too.
01:53
I have a brother, he's four years older and he was very smart
01:56
too.
01:56
My sister went to Harvard, my brother went to bu my sister is
02:01
now a breast cancer surgeon and uh my brother is a biomedical
02:06
engineer.
02:08
So, you know, I had a lot to, to prove did that motivate you.
02:13
Definitely, you know, I always wanted to, to succeed in life
02:18
and growing up in my house, uh we used to play a lot of board games
02:22
with my parents, especially my mom.
02:24
And even though I was the youngest five years younger than
02:27
everybody else, they wouldn't let me win like whatever I wanted
02:31
I had to earn and, and I think it was good because they taught
02:37
me that if you want something, you really have to work hard
02:41
at it, like things are not just gonna be given to you.
02:44
So I think, you know, from that and also from participating
02:48
in so many sports, I was always um with the mentality that I
02:53
wanted to win that I wanted to succeed.
02:55
And I always knew that if I worked hard, I could do it.
02:58
So, so that was always my mentality that was inculcated at
03:01
a very, very early age.
03:03
How did you, how did you, uh, get involved with modeling?
03:07
How did that come about?
03:09
Um, I always, uh, like to like dress up and do my hair and do my
03:13
makeup.
03:14
I would do my mom's hair, my sister's hair, um even though I
03:18
was the youngest, like I was 12 and I did my sister's makeup
03:21
for her senior prom.
03:23
Like that tells you I just loved it.
03:25
I loved fashion.
03:26
I was just obsessed with it.
03:28
And, um, when I was 14, I told my mom that I wanted to model.
03:33
So they took me to this agency in, in Puerto Rico.
03:36
Uh, the name was Unica.
03:38
They took me to the agency and when we walked in, uh, Riad Fernandez
03:42
was the owner.
03:43
And, uh, she said, you know, you know, why are you here?
03:47
How can I help you?
03:48
What classes you want to do?
03:49
A summer camp?
03:50
What, what do you wanna do?
03:51
And I said, I would like to model and she's like, ok, you know
03:54
how old are you?
03:56
I said I'm 14 and she's like, oh, she looked at me because I'm
03:59
only 53 and I've been 53 since I was 13 years old.
04:03
So she looked at me and she's like, well, let's try something
04:08
There's an audition today for a commercial for a Chile commercial
04:12
you know, the chile, I am the gum.
04:13
She said, I'm gonna send you to that audition and we'll see
04:17
what happens.
04:18
And I'm like, what, like you're gonna send me to the audition
04:20
Like, I've never taken classes, you know, I've never done
04:23
this.
04:24
Like, you're just gonna send me and she's like, yeah, I wanna
04:27
see how you do.
04:28
So she sent me to the audition and I got the commercial first
04:34
time and from that day I never stopped working and you never
04:38
acted before.
04:39
You never, you'd never been in an audition.
04:42
I acted a lot at my house.
04:44
I mean, I thought, I, I mean, I would get in front of the mirror
04:47
and I would like, put on my grandma's necklaces and use her
04:50
purses and her heels.
04:52
And I used to make my own soap soap operas when I had friends
04:56
over, you know, to come play, we would do dances and, and I would
05:00
do modeling shows and I did it all, you know, I practiced for
05:04
it, but at home, home by yourself, Kev and the pressure didn't
05:09
get to you to, to go on an audition for a real commercial with
05:13
your mom.
05:14
I mean, that's the first day out.
05:15
You didn't feel the pressure.
05:17
You didn't.
05:17
I always uh had this confidence, this sense of confidence
05:22
Um I always knew um I would succeed.
05:28
I believed in myself even, you know, being really young, like
05:33
I was the one who would get in front of the classroom and, and
05:37
say, I want the lead in the part of the Christmas show, you know
05:40
they used to have always the Virgin Mary.
05:43
I wanna be the Virgin Mary.
05:44
You know, uh when it was the Halloween, I wanted to be the witch
05:48
I don't know, I always enjoyed being in the spotlight.
05:52
I felt comfortable there.
05:54
I, I didn't feel intimidated by it.
05:58
Listen, I'm, I'm, I'm, I'm no psychologist, but it seems like
06:02
you have wonderful parents.
06:05
Normally that comes from a tremendous amount of security
06:09
provided by the parents.
06:10
Is that, is that, is that true in your case?
06:13
Um My parents were just, I mean, they were really good parents
06:19
but I also must say I had a, a caregiver from the time I was born
06:25
until I was six years old.
06:27
She was a Cuban lady and I think she made it the biggest impact
06:32
in my life.
06:33
Um She was the one who taught me um how to pray.
06:38
She was the one who would take me to school every morning, we
06:43
would just talk and talk and talk.
06:45
She never had kids of her own.
06:47
Um, she lost like three babies and I think in her heart, she
06:51
saw me as her daughter and, you know, my parents were so my dad
06:55
was always working, always, always working and my mom was
06:58
busy.
06:59
You know, I had an older brother and an older sister.
07:01
So I really bonded with her and the time that she dedicated
07:06
to me was priceless and, and she made me believe I was wonder
07:11
woman.
07:12
As a matter of fact, when I, from my, when I turned seven, that
07:17
was my birthday.
07:18
You know, I was wonder woman.
07:19
And I really believed it.
07:21
And, uh, my dad would always tell me, yes, you know, you look
07:24
like her and, and I believed it and, and, and I wanted to be,
07:29
you know, wonder woman, not necessarily, you know, to wear
07:31
the costume and, and, you know, and fly, but, you know, I just
07:35
wanted to do it all and, and, and I knew I could do it and my dad
07:40
always told me, you know, and just seeing him, seeing his work
07:43
ethic, I knew if I followed his path and I worked hard, I could
07:48
do it.
07:50
And you've become wonder woman.
07:52
It's been a process to become wonder woman.
07:54
I don't think I'm wonder woman, but I think, but you are, but
07:58
you are, you've done so much.
08:00
You really have.
08:01
Accomplished so much.
08:03
Was that what you dreamt of when you were a little girl?
08:06
How did you going back to that time, the life that you dreamt
08:10
of what you wanted to be in order to be fulfilled?
08:16
Does it look like anything like the life you lead today?
08:19
Well, when I was little, I changed my mind a lot on what I wanted
08:23
to be.
08:23
Sometimes, uh you know, I wanted to be a famous model or a famous
08:28
actress or an amazing volleyball player or, you know, I just
08:33
changed a lot depending on my age and what I was doing.
08:36
So, you know, it was, it was always very interesting for my
08:40
parents to see what I would come up with.
08:42
And then, you know, when I got older and I started uh college
08:46
I wanted to do acting and my dad was horrified.
08:50
He's like, no, you know, what are you gonna do as an actress
08:54
So, so he let me do acting as my minor.