DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — Angela Underwood has spent her entire career helping people, young and old, escape abusive and dangerous situations.
She began by working with juvenile court services and now heads the House of Ruth as its executive director.
“My parents didn’t have a lot of money but we had what we needed,” Underwood said. “I was a happy child growing up.”
Angela said her childhood is what sparked her belief that everyone deserves a happy home life.
“Every job that I had an opportunity to work in, it was my goal to make someone happy even in some real tough situations,” Angela told WDHN.
Angela began working her way through the juvenile court system ranks, eventually becoming a chief juvenile probation officer. It was a career than spanned nearly 30 years.
“But I wasn’t ready to go home,” Angela said.
That’s when the doors opened at the House of Ruth.
“Started out as a court advocate and then, July 27, 2020, I was asked to step in as acting director,” Angela explained. “Then, after a long interview on September 10th, the board decided that I could handle the job.”
Now, Angela leads the House of Ruth’s efforts to help women, children, and families suffering from trauma, abuse and homelessness.
To say Angela was surprised to find out she was nominated as a remarkable woman would be an understatement.
“Maybe not all of my work went unnoticed down through these years,” Angela said. “Not that it was done so someone might notice but done so that someone might be helped.”
In typical Angela fashion, she hopes people who need help will see this story and realize she’s here.
“All of us have made mistakes, but what we should do at this point is pick up and move forward and not continue to make the same mistakes,” Angela said. “There’s someone out here who’s willing to help you if you want to be helped.”
For more information about the House of Ruth, visit their website.