First Paid AA Secretary Ruth Hock Resigns February 2, 1942

First Paid AA Secretary Ruth Hock Resigns February 2, 1942

Ruth Hock, a non-alcoholic, was hired by AA Pioneer Hank Parkhurst as the secretary of Honor Dealers in January 1936. She had no idea of what she getting into. Honor Dealers was a business that was created by Hank P. and Bill Wilson in which they were trying to bring in enough money to make ends meets and also get Alcoholics Anonymous off the ground. This small business office that Ruth worked out of became an office that was often used for AA matters. Many inquires to Bill and AA were going through the Honor Dealers office which Ruth was taking the phone calls and often opening and responding to mail. As business declined for Honor Dealers and AA activity increased, Ruth became the first official secretary for Alcoholic Anonymous. By 1939, Ruth had been working for months in exchange for worthless shares of Works Publishing stock.

In May 1938, Bill began dictating chapters of the Big Book to her. Many hours were spent with Bill speaking out his thoughts and Ruth typing them on her typewriter. She was also responible for an estimated 15,000 letters of correspondence to alcoholics in her time as the AA secretary. On Febuary 2, 1942, Ruth resigned her position to get married.

The recording below is of Ruth speaking to a group of Alcoholics in 1978 about the Early days of Alcoholics Anonymous. She shares these stories from an incredibly different perspective than what many people have ever heard before!:

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