top of page

Arnold Woods, Jr.

Arnold A. Woods, Jr. was born and raised in Carbondale, IL and has resided in Iowa for over twenty-five years. Arnold is a veteran, having served in the United States Air Force during the Vietnam War. He is a proud graduate of Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, using his Bachelor's Degree in Institutional Management to forge a career in college administration.


Over the course of his career, Arnold was employed with five colleges in three different states and was employed by the Missouri Coordinating Board of Higher Education. His longest tenure was as the Director of Financial Assistance Services at Grinnell College until his retirement in 2014. 


Arnold has been committed to the cause of civil rights since childhood. He is a life member of the NAACP, is the current First Vice President of the Des Moines Branch, the immediate Past President of the Des Moines Branch as well as the immediate Past President of the Iowa/Nebraska State NAACP Conference of Branches.


Arnold and his wife Gretchen have been married since 1982 and are the proud parents of two (Ebonee and Arnold, III) and grandparents of one (Rosa).

He remains strongly committed to God, social and human justice work, community activism and other related issues.  He is always mindful to help seek solutions of the disenfranchised and less fortunate in our society.


Arnold is the owner of College-Cents Consulting Services and the Chairman of Deacon Ministries and member of Faith Missionary Baptist Church. He is also a Community Ambassador for the Des Moines Police Department’s CAP Program.

His other vast community, civic, and professional experience includes:


  • Past -President, 14 state Midwest Association of Student Employment Administrators (MASEA)

  • Chairman, 2013 Access and Diversity Committee of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA includes over 6,000 colleges and universities)

  • Committee Chair, Diversity Committee of the National Student Employment Association (NSEA)

  • Committee Chair, Midwest Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (MASFAA)

  • Committee Chair, Iowa Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (IASFAA), etc. 

  • American Red Cross: Poweshiek County and the Iowa Rivers Red Cross Chapters

  • Girl Scouts of America (Des Moines)

  • Ft. Des Moines Museum and Educational Center

  • Evelyn Davis Center for Working Families

  • AMOS and,

  • Mediation and Circle team member Des Moines Middle Schools Board of Directors

  • Co-founder of Faith Academy of Religious Studies

bottom of page