Twenty-five-year-old Thomas Olsen grew up in the historic heart of Las Vegas near the Medical District where the city got its start decades ago. His grandfather, Dr. Gerald Higgins, famed Las Vegas orthopedic surgeon and UNLV sports team doctor, was easily one of the most recognized figures in local history. Dr. Higgins’ ten children have mostly made their homes and raised families here as well, spawning a fierce family legacy that includes doctors, lawyers and CEOs, including Olsen’s mother, Mary Beth Higgins, who heads up Affinity Gaming.
The Higgins family legacy just happens to also include a professional athlete given that Olsen is goalie for the Las Vegas Lights of the United Football Club. A 2013 graduate of Bishop Gorman High School, Olsen helped his high school win a high school state soccer championship before going on to play soccer on scholarship for the University of San Diego. Upon graduation in 2017, his professional career was off and running.
In the Major League Soccer draft, Olsen was selected by the Colorado Rapids, where he played for three months before joining the Las Vegas Lights. Now in his third season with the Lights, Olsen is itching to get back out and start playing what he born to do in the heart of the city at Cashman Field not far from where he grew up.
Despite living near downtown Las Vegas for years, Olsen longed to join friends and many others in his family now living in Summerlin. After sharing a home near The Mesa Park with a few buddies, he decided he preferred a more urban-inspired location. So, when the opportunity arose to move to Tanager, the luxury apartment complex at Downtown Summerlin, the decision was easy. Today, Olsen walks just about anywhere he needs to go.
“When I lived in San Diego as a college student, walking was my preferred mode of transportation,” said Olsen. “I easily prefer a more urban lifestyle, and that’s exactly what I enjoy about living at Tanager. The vibe here is younger and hipper and it suits me better than living in a residential neighborhood.”
A self-described sports nut, Olsen says he loves just about anything with a ball – or, now, a puck. In addition to soccer, he loves basketball and like the rest of Las Vegas, has become a hockey fan because of the Vegas Golden Knights. He is looking forward to catching more games of all kinds at Downtown Summerlin’s newest hot spot – Wolfgang Puck Players Locker – where he hopes, one day, his Las Vegas Lights jersey, will find a permanent home in the restaurant’s sports memorabilia display. Until then, this hometown boy continues to pursue his “goals,” literally!