Mildred Hope Fisher Wood, long-time teacher and advocate for Learning Disabilities, was inducted into the Iowa Commission on the Status of Women Hall of Fame 27 August 2011. Ms. Wood, who began teaching in 1939, later became a speech therapist, and eventually migrated to higher education, was 91 years old at the time of recognition. According to published reports, she has served on boards for both the Iowa chapter and the national Learning Disabilities Association.
Dr. Mildred Hope Fisher Wood is a pioneer who brought special education for learning disabilities to the forefront in Iowa, empowering thousands of students each year to lead productive, respected lives. Born in Alta in 1920, Wood earned four degrees from the University of Northern Iowa, did postgraduate work at Syracuse University and the University of Oregon, and earned a doctorate at Indiana University – all to study learning disabilities in children and to develop practices to transform them into learners. She created and taught the first courses on learning disabilities to future teachers at the University of Northern Iowa and conducted hundreds of workshops for teachers, principals, parents, psychologists, and juvenile court officers. Not only is she an advocate for children, she is a mentor for parents and has bettered the lives of innumerable families – often through volunteer work in communities, the church, and throughout the state. Wood is a recognized leader and is a charter member of the National Association for Children with Learning Disabilities and the Iowa Association. She has also been the president of the Iowa Learning Disabilities Association. Wood is a published author, a co-author of a diagnostic test for pre-school children, and the recipient of many awards. Wood was inducted into the Iowa Women’s Hall of Fame in 2011.
News coverage of the Ms. Wood’s induction is available: “Iowa Women’s Hall of Fame inductees announced” by Danielle Plogmann; “Innovative educator, Fischer Wood, inducted into Iowa Women’s Hall of Fame” by John Molseed; “Four Iowa women cited for honors.”