Lubbock Chamber honors WBU alumnus with volunteer award

LUBBOCK – Lubbock Area United Way recently honored Lubbock campus graduate Margarita “Margie” Olivarez with the Rita Harmon Volunteer Service Award for her impact on the city.

A native of Lubbock, Olivarez “is a constant force in the Lubbock community. She is a conduit and activator for young women and the greater Hispanic community for the South Plains,” the United Way said. “She is best known for her passion for volunteerism, with a focus on education. Margie is a walking testament of hope: overcoming obstacles of being a teenage mother, a valiant cancer survivor and a nontraditional college student. She aspires to encourage anyone she meets that anything is possible; all you need is ganas (desire).”

Olivarez volunteers for Lubbock Parks & Recreation, Raiders Rojos, HACEMOS, Our Lady of Grace Guadalupanas, Camp Rio Blanco Circle of Friends, Lubbock Latino Chamber of Commerce. She is also involved in the Girl Scouts Advisory Committee and Lubbock Area United Way Community Impact Committee. She has been a Girl Scout leader for 25 years, a journey that started with her daughter as a Brownie. 

Through the years, Olivarez has been honored by numerous organizations, including YWCA Women of Excellence; Girl Scouts of the Texas Oklahoma Plains Women of Distinction Lifetime Achievement; Jefferson Award; LULAC Community Leader of the Year; and Hispana Inspiradora. For the past 15 years, she has received the President’s Volunteer Service Award for volunteering 300 or more hours annually.

Olivarez earned her undergraduate degree at Wayland in 2000 and then her Master of Arts in Management degree in 2013. She has worked at AT&T for more than 20 years. She now works part-time at Ramar Communications covering events through the Hispanic Awareness Segment each week, a project she initiated to bring positive awareness to the Hispanic community. She is the co-founder of Training for Life Racing, which puts on the annual Dia De Los Muertos 5K and Fun Run.

She and husband Tony have two grown children and one grandson.