It’s almost been a lifetime ago when Amaris Davidson was roaming the halls of Leesville High School.

Davidson, who was a cheerleader and track and field standout as a Lady Cat, has found her way from the piney woods of west Louisiana to the lights, sounds, glitz and glamor that is Hollywood, Calif., where she is attempting to make waves on both small and big screens.

“My goal is to one day have a role on a show where I have a gun and a badge,” Davidson said. “But don’t get me wrong, I’m always a Wampus Cat.”

Davidson’s journey to Hollywood began in Vernon Parish, where she attended Leesville. Her sister, Angela Davidson, was a superstar basketball player who signed with Ole Miss out of high school in 1998.

Amaris’ turn to graduate was the following year. During that year, much like her three previous, she spent time on the sidelines as a cheerleader, giving her utmost support to the Wampus Cats on the football field and basketball court.

But when spring rolled around, you found Davidson showing off her athletic prowess in track and field.

She was among the best in her two events — the high jump and the 100-meter low hurdles. She finished in the top three in both events at the Class 4A state meet, enough to draw interest from several colleges, eventually signing with Northwestern State University.

In her first year at NSU, she focused mainly on her two events, but gradually worked her way into the heptathlon, which she did for two years before transferring to Texas Southern University in Houston, where she graduated in 2004 with a degree in broadcast journalism.

While also at Leesville High School and NSU, Davidson was intrigued by the theater and television. By the time she moved to Houston, she was hoping to use her degree to make her way into the television industry.

While in Houston, she danced for the WNBA’s Houston Comets in 2003, before moving over the NBA’s Rockets for the next three years.

It was also at that same time she began modeling.

“I started modeling for Page Parkes Agency,” Davidson said in a telephone interview from California. “Eventually, I ended up getting a recording deal with Matthew Knowles, Beyonce’s father, with MusicWorld Entertainment.”

Davidson sang for Knowles in a trio by the name of Lady Lux. They had success and performed at the Tom Joiner Family Reunion in Florida, while also singing at Spotlight Live in New York City.

The trio ended their contract with Knowles around 2009 and started working with an independent songwriter. However, the group soon split up and Davidson began to go on acting auditions.

“I started going on auditions and was invited to something called Agent Review,” she said. “I eventually signed with Osbrink Commercial Agency.”

In 2010, Davidson was bound to the bright lights of Hollywood for good, where she has remained.

“I had been out here to record some time before I moved here,” she said. “I miss Leesville

tremendously, but this is where I needed to be.”

Her first few jobs were with Nike, while also doing some commercials for the NCAA and Toyota.

Eventually, she had the opportunity to act in her first feature film, “Disaster Movie”.

“It was a spoof movie with Carmen Electra where I played a cheerleader,” Davidson recalled. “Since

then, I’ve been in a few more movies and am now a member of the Screen Actors Guild.”

Along with the members of Lady Lux, she performed in “Stomp the Yard 2: Homecoming” and has also had roles in “Against the Grain”, “Insidious: Chapter 3” and “Broken: A Musical”.

She has also been in TV commercials for McDonald’s and has found success on the small screen, acting in shows such as “How I Met Your Mother”, “Sam and Cat”, “Castle”, “Rizzole & Isles”

and “Jane the Virgin.”

She has had a recurring role in a couple of shows, such as Hart of “Dixie and Me, You, and Him”.

Perhaps Davidson’s greatest success to date has been “The Process”. She has appeared in all 14

episodes of the show, which was recently picked up by a Youtube channel for a second season.

“Hopefully, it will be purchased by one of the networks,” she said.

Currently, Davidson is spending most of her time auditioning for roles on weekly television series.

However, she is deeply involved in her church in the Los Angeles suburb of Inglewood, where she

admits to staying grounded.

Davidson said she has only returned to Leesville twice, once for the wedding of a close friend and the other time being for the funeral of a former classmate.

“All of my family moved to Texas not long after I graduated,” she said. “But I miss Leesville all the

time. But once a Wampus Cat, always a Wampus Cat.”