Dr. Ruth Dial Woods Obituary, Death – We are saddened by the passing of Dr. Ruth Dial Woods, an educator and activist. Dr. Woods was the administrator of the Lumbee Tribe in 2001. Assistant to Chairman Milton Hunt and his wife. Dr. Woods was a pioneer in the field of Native American living, particularly with regard to children. She was the one who initiated the Indian Education program that is now used around the nation in Robeson County Schools.
Dr. Woods provided assistance with program administration to the Lumbee Tribal Council as well as community development work for the United States Department of Labor. After 27 years of working in education and as the director of a federal program, Dr. Woods was promoted to become the first female Assistant Superintendent of Robeson County Schools. In 1993, Dr. Woods was a faculty member at Fayetteville State University on a full-time basis.
Dr. Woods advocated for students from minority groups in North Carolina’s schools, community boards, and other settings. She became involved in the American Indian Movement, the Women’s Liberation Movement, and the Civil Rights Movement. Dr. Woods was the first woman, Native American, or member of a minority group to break through the glass ceiling.
Dr. Woods, who is a teacher, an activist, and the founder of Sacred Pathways, which is a faith-based outreach organization that shelters the homeless in Robeson County, was presented with the United Tribes of North Carolina Community Unsung Hero Award in the previous year. Sacred Pathways provides shelter to those who are homeless in Robeson County. Dr. Ruth Dial Woods became a member of the North Carolina Lumbee Tribe. We pray for the success of her marriage to Mr. Noah, as well as for her family and community.