Biography

Angela Fields is the Founder/ Executive Director of Rae's Hope and former teacher in Dallas ISD. She had over 32 years of teaching experience in the field of Special Education.

Angela is from Dayton, Ohio. She received her bachelor's degree in Special Education from Indiana University in 1984. After college, she moved to San Antonio, Texas, and started her teaching career. She briefly taught in Los Angeles, California, before moving back to Texas in 1987 to teach in Dallas ISD.

In high school, Angela was a state champion in track and field. She also participated in track and field at Indiana University. She received honors from the governor of Ohio for her community work.

While teaching, she also coached middle and high school volleyball and track and field, winning "Coach of the Year" honors five times. Her volleyball teams were undefeated three straight years in district play at South Oak Cliff High School during her 13 years there.

While at South Oak Cliff High School, Angela had a vision of bringing the community together and recognized that the school needed an elite sports program. She created and directed volleyball tournaments for 10 middle schools for over 7 years, each team with over 20 participants. She also organized a small basketball tournament that allowed students who did not have the opportunity to attend high school games a chance to play with and against the high school's basketball superstars.

Early in her career, Angela began pursuing her passion for empowering young people through sports. In 1999, she founded the South Dallas Starlings Volleyball Club, providing opportunities for girls from diverse economic backgrounds to learn to play volleyball. In 2001, Angela became the Program Coordinator for South Dallas Weed and Seed, a local and nationally coordinated program overseen by the U.S. Attorney General's office aimed at preventing violent crime, drug abuse, and gang activity. Angela started blending sports and leadership programs as well as summer camps for more than 2,500 youth as part of Weed and Seed.

In 2008 Angela founded the nonprofit organization Rae's Hope, bringing to life her vision for the future of our youth and young adults - building balanced skills in various aspects of life to develop self-esteem as a foundation for demonstrating self-reliance. The proven effective programming involves challenging girls to face obstacles, persevere, and ultimately succeed in real-world challenges as crucial steps in creating the personal abilities to be self-reliant and lead fulfilling lives.

Angela has been recognized by EBONY magazine, the Mayor of the City of Dallas, and by local newspapers and television stations for her work in the Dallas community. She received the Gail Reese Ward Excellence in Mentoring Award at the SMU Symposium. In 2018 she was recognized by the Dallas Mavericks and received the Walmart Community Award for work with empowering at-risk girls.

In 2007 she returned to teaching at Cedar Crest Elementary School, where she is a member of the PBIS (Positive Behavioral & Intervention Supports) team and is Crisis Prevention Institute (CPI) trained to focus on modifying many of the challenging social-emotional behaviors that students exhibit at the school. She worked with students with learning disabilities and now works with the Preschool Program for Children with Disabilities, which includes many autistic boys.

She stays connected with the parents and encourages them to stay actively engaged with their children while teaching them strategies for working with their children at home.

In different schools, she started a girls' mentoring volleyball life skills club and uses the Rae's Hope model to empower at-risk girls to take charge of their lives and become productive members of their community. She engages girls in community services projects, technology workshops, and physical fitness activities. In 2019 she received the LifeChanger of the Year award for her outstanding work in teaching and her community work with Rae's Hope. She was recognized by the Dallas Police Department for her outstanding work for girls in the community.

She prides herself on mentoring many of the girls, preparing them for future life experiences such as college, jobs, and careers. She stays in touch with some of the girls after high school and college to support them and help meet some of their needs. During her career, she has worked with over 5,000 girls and boys. She works from dawn until dusk 7 days a week, working to be the "change-maker" in the community she serves.
Angela is married to Donnie L. Fields.

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