Advocate and Storyteller

I have lived with chronic debilitating illnesses most of my life.

Olga Lucia Torres, JD, MS

Lecturer, Columbia University
New York Advocacy Committee Chair and Ambassador, Lupus Foundation of America
Chair, Board of Trustees, Multicultural Media Correspondents Association Member, Medical Advisory Board, Hear Your Song

Olga Lucia Torres has been sick her entire life: starting with a pediatric pituitary adenoma, later developing lupus and five other autoimmune diseases, then experiencing a devastating brain injury that left her disabled.

As a first-generation Latina, she was one of the eight founding attorneys of the Bronx Defenders, and is now a lecturer in the Narrative Medicine program at Columbia University. Olga is also a patient advocate and is the New York State Advocacy Chairperson for the Lupus Foundation of America.

Additionally, she’s a member of the medical advisory board of Hear Your Song, a nonprofit that empowers children and teens with serious illnesses to make their voices heard through collaborative songwriting.

She’s also the Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Multicultural Media Correspondents Association, an organization that seeks to increase diversity across all platforms of media.

She’s been published in the New York Times, Parents Magazine, and various other publications about what it’s like to live and parent in New York City as a person with disabilities and with all her medical conditions.