Laurie Hood, Board Member
In 2006 Laurie conceived the vision for Alaqua Animal Refuge, a non-profit animal welfare organization dedicated to providing care for Walton County’s animals in need. Laurie opened Alaqua Animal Refuge in January 2007 on 10 acres of her and her husband Taylor’s personal property. In the first three years of operation, Hood was responsible for finding homes for more than 4,000 animals. The refuge is currently home to more than 250 animals at any given time and places up to 100 animals per month. Hood and her husband designed the refuge to be distinctly different from the standard concrete-and-chain-link kennel concept, and thanks to a generous capital improvements grant last year, were able to create a facility that resembles more of an amusement park than a shelter. The refuge accepts nearly any animal in need of care, including dogs and cats, kittens, puppies, horses, pigs and even emus. Hood has drawn on her business background to create a non-profit that functions for success.
Her prior professional experience includes operating an international magazine in south Florida for eight years and serving as the marketing director for a medical development company that has launched several publicly traded medical and drug companies. A graduate of Choctawhatchee High School, Fort Walton Beach, FL, Laurie holds a bachelor’s degree from Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge. She is a resident of Freeport and she and her husband are parents to two boys, Crockett and Garner.