Lauren was an understudy for Phylicia Rashad in the play Into the Woods.
Her mother's name is Coco.
Lauren is of Puerto Rican descent.
Lauren was born is Brooklyn, but she was raised in Queens.
Lauren was one of eight children.
Lauren's father was a police officer.
Lauren had a role on the ABC Soap Opera Ryan's Hope in the late 1970s, and was under an option contract. ABC later opted out of the contract.
Lauren received a scholarship from the Alvin Ailey Dance School.
Lauren studied acting at The Acting Studio.
Lauren studied Shakespeare at Michael Howard Studios.
Lauren graduated from Kingsborough Community College.
Lauren has been married since 1993.
Lauren made her feature film debut in I Like It Like That, it was also her first leading role.
Lauren was considered for the role of Hallie in Scream 2.
Lauren was nominated for an ALMA Award every year from 1998-2002, and in 1999 she was nominated three times in three different categories.
Lauren had a cameo in the film Dreamgirls, she also appeared in the musical on Broadway.
Lauren has appeared in three different television shows with actor David Zayas. New York Undercover, Oz, and Dexter.
Lauren has won the following awards:
-NCLR Bravo Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series for New York Undercover in 1996.
-ALMA Award for Outstanding Actress in Television Series for Oz in 2001.
-Long Island International Film Expo - Best Supporting Actress for Serial in 2006.
-NAMIC Vision Award for Best Actress - Drama for Dexter in 2007.
Lauren has appeared in the following plays:
-The Vagina Monologues
-Much Ado About Nothing
In addition to acting and dancing, Lauren once worked as restaurant hostess, and as a telephone operator.
Lauren was originally going to be a dancer, until a knee injury ended those hopes and she turned her attention to acting.
Lauren made an appearance in the March 1996 issue of Playboy magazine.
Lauren has a twin sister, her name is Lorraine and she (Lorraine) often works as a "stand in" for Lauren on set and has even taken over for her in roles she has left (on Broadway for example).
[Explaining a scene in Dexter]
Lauren Velez: I dealt with a head once and it was heavy and it was really weird. In the plastic bag, it really looked terrifying.