Name: Lauren Spencer
Hometown: Stockton, Calif.
Now Lives: In a two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment in Los Angeles.
Claim to Fame: Ms. Spencer, who goes by Lolo, is an actress, model and disability influencer who is best known for portraying the quick-witted, sex-positive freshman Jocelyn on “The Sex Lives of College Girls,” currently in its second season on HBO Max.
“Jocelyn was the college version of myself,” she said. “I was partying all the time, having sex — maybe not as often as Jocelyn is, though.” Ms. Spencer, who has muscular dystrophy and uses a wheelchair, also creates videos debunking disability myths and shares fashion and dating tips on Instagram and YouTube. “I wanted to create content that would answer that question and eventually dispel stereotypes about how disabled people live their lives,” she said.
Big Break: Ms. Spencer started her YouTube channel, Sitting Pretty Lolo, shortly after graduating from California State University, Northridge in 2012. The channel caught the attention of a Tommy Hilfiger executive who hired her for a fashion campaign. With the help of an agent, she landed the lead role in “Give Me Liberty,” a 2019 independent film about Tracy, a disability advocate, and her relationship with a medical transport driver.
Latest Project: She recently voiced Jazzy on “Firebuds,” a Disney Junior animated series about a team of first responders. Jazzy, who has spina bifida, uses a combination wheelchair and car. “It’s very important for kids to start learning about disability at a young age,” Ms. Spencer said.
In September, she started Live Solo, an online resource that helps young adults with disabilities live independently. “I wanted to challenge myself to figure out how I could make a greater impact on the disabled community beyond me just talking in front of a camera,” Ms. Spencer said.
Next Thing: Ms. Spencer will release her first book, “Access Your Drive & Enjoy the Ride,” in February. “My goal is not to inspire anyone,” she said. “I’m just going to share my truth — a different perspective on something that’s been misrepresented for so long.” But, she added, “if people get inspiration, that’s dope.”
Dating With a Disability: Ms. Spencer, who is single, said her wheelchair isn’t quite the “no big deal” apparatus it is for her character Jocelyn. “The men I have dated or interacted with haven’t necessarily freaked out or been weird about anything,” she said. “But certain things they’ve either said or done made it feel they didn’t fully accept the fact that I had a disability.”