For this week’s segment of Woman Wednesday, AY About You sits down with LaTresha Woodruff, the public information officer for the Arkansas Division of Emergency Management (ADEM).
Before going to the ADEM, Woodruff spent 10 years as the public information officer (PIO) with the Conway Police Department.
“I was the department’s first civilian PIO. In my past life, I was a TV news reporter,” Woodruff shares. “I spent 15 years telling peoples’ stories and keeping the public informed. The last six years of my reporting career were spent working for FOX16 News in Little Rock.”
Woodruff is a graduate of Mississippi State University where she earned a degree in Broadcast Communications.
“I am originally from Mississippi, but my husband and I have called Arkansas home for 21 years,” Woodruff reaffirms. “I have a passion for giving back to my community through volunteering, serving on boards of nonprofits, emceeing and helping organize fundraising events. I enjoy working out, listening to podcasts and I am a wannabe wine snob.”
We asked Woodruff what it means to her to be a woman.
“I absolutely love being a woman but it’s not for the faint of heart,” she says. “It means being strong, assertive, working harder, being resilient and fierce while remaining compassionate, caring and kind.”
We asked Woodruff what challenges she faces as a woman.
“I am very confident and I let my opinions be known. The challenge has been being called emotional, if I passionately express my opinion or being called the ‘B word’ for being assertive when a man doing the same is seen as strong,” Woodruff shares. “Having said that, fortunately, I have been in some spaces where I had great male bosses and colleagues who valued my knowledge, opinions and what I bring to the table.”
Woodruff offers a word of advice to the women and girls who read this article:
“Be you no matter what, they’ll adjust. Never back down. Let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works.”
Lead photo courtesy of the Arkansas Division of Emergency Management.
READ MORE: Woman Wednesday: Dr. Janine A. Parry