About Us

Ruth’s Education and Relief Services (RERS) Inc. is a nonprofit 501c3 Service Organization focused on Education Improvement and Disaster Relief Support. The organization was founded in loving memory of my mother who passed away in January 2022. Mom was educated at Mt. Olive School (Laurel Mississippi) and attended Alcorn College (now Alcorn State University) where she received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary Education in 1963. Upon graduation, she began her teaching career in Batesville, MS as an elementary school teacher and grew to love every facet of education. Looking for new challenges, she moved to New Jersey in 1969 continuing her teaching career with Newark Board of Education in New Jersey.

After 39 rewarding years in the classroom, mom retired and relocated back to her hometown of Laurel Mississippi. At this juncture in life, mom continued her teaching career and began to mentor and work part time in the Laurel School system for another successful 14 years. In addition, mom left a lasting impact with her community during times of natural disasters and family hardships. My mom dedicated her entire life to the youth, educational uplift, and relief of the suffering. As a result of her superior service and love for her community, the Ruth’s Education and Relief Services Inc. nonprofit organization will continue to keep her spirit and passion lifted high!

Colonel Bruce Arrington (Retired) is the CEO and President of Ruth’s Education and Relief Services (RERS) Inc. a nonprofit 501c3 Service Organization focused on Education Improvement and Disaster Relief Support. As a youngster, I’ve spent countless hours and precious time with my grandparents who resided in Jones County (Mount Olive Community) and served as educators and passionate leaders for their community for over 50 years. With both of my parents also being born and raised in Jones County, I developed a strong desire and affection to continue serving and supporting the residents of Laurel Mississippi and the Jones County Pine Belt Region.

After my graduation from Grambling State University and achieving my MBA degree from Webster University, I embarked on an exciting 26-year military career in the United States Air Force as an Intelligence Officer and as a Nuclear Missile Launch Officer. During my military career, I had the pleasure of residing and learning in over 20 countries abroad which further heightened and strengthened my passion for Community Service. Upon completion of my exciting and rewarding military career, I chose to work in the following areas due to my passion for helping others: High School AFJROTC Professor (Maryland), Critical Infrastructure Protection Director (US Embassy Saudi Arabia), US Agency for International Development Intelligence Director (Washington DC) and currently CEO, Arlandus and Arlandus Consulting Company with a focus on Management Operations.

Sustained educational development of our young future leaders of America and disaster preparedness has been my passion for many years and consumes much of my discussion with my own three kids and close associates. My increased passion for service was intensified during my 1-year tour with the United Nations. While serving in the West African nation of Liberia as the Director of Civil Military Coordination, that assignment allowed me to further continue serving a country with over 3 million mostly marginalized citizens. Conversely, as the Operation Center Director for a National Federal Agency, I also led and managed a worldwide mission on behalf of the White House to provide timely updates for disasters as well as potential threats facing the United States and our allies. Prior to this executive opportunity, I also was competitively selected to lead and manage two other Operation Centers with a similar challenging mission.

With the help of my Foundation trusted volunteers, I aim to improve the quality of education for our youth and reduce the burden on our tremendous teachers and school staff in the Pine Belt region. The kids are our future leaders, and they deserve nothing but the best. Utilizing my varied background and available resources, we will work diligently and tirelessly to provide timely supplies to Laurel Mississippi and Jones County’s most urgent citizens during times of unimaginable disasters facing our community.

My family and I have resided in Jones County for a very long time, and we want to ensure the best for all our residents in need. We would like for each willing and enthusiastic person to consider joining our organization and being an active member. Each Ruth’s Education and Relief Services (RERS) volunteer will allow us to support the Pine Belt region more effectively and efficiently to achieve our vision. We thank you all for what you have done and will continue to do in the future!

Sincerely Yours

Colonel Bruce Arrington, USAF, (Retired)

CEO, Ruth’s Education and Relief Services Inc.

Ms. Wanda Priester Benson leads the RERS team as Chief Operating Officer and Vice President for US Operations.  Wanda will oversee the daily operations of RERS – Education Initiatives; Disaster Relief Services; Volunteer Committee; Special Events; Community Fundraisers; Corporate Sponsorships; and Donation Drive.  As a lifelong resident of Laurel/Jones County, MS (Mount Olive Community) Wanda has a strong desire to serve the underserved.   Wanda is focused on community organization, youth education and development along with ensuring our youth are ready for future life career experiences.   Wanda earned her bachelor’s degree from Rust College in Holly Springs with a focus in Business Administration.  She has extensive experience in Accounting, Public Relations and Recruiting.  A Diamond Life Member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. where she has held the position of President, Vice President and Parliamentarian.

Wanda has a heart for service and is committed to ensuring RERS is promoted and seen in a positive manner throughout the community.  Wanda is truly appreciative to Colonel Arrington for the vision in creating RERS in memory of his loving mother to continue her desire to educate children in Laurel and Jones County.  We “RERS” will continue to keep her spirit and passion lifted high!

Mr. Nathan Arrington serves as the Vice President for Youth Affairs globally to ensure we maximize all opportunities for underprivileged students and teachers in our target communities.  Nathan will serve as our youth coordinator as he is a current scholar college student majoring in Cyber Security and also a basketball player at Stevenson University in Maryland.  He has a strong passion and an ability to bring the best out of our youth.   

Nathan has spent countless hours observing and learning from his grandmother to further relay these key attributes to youth facing educational challenges.