The Person

I was born in Long Beach, CA and moved to Maple Valley, WA a relatively small town about 20 miles from Seattle. While growing up, my family and friends helped me develop a wide range of interests but especially sports. The majoriLittle Derekty of my time in youth and young adulthood was spent playing any sport I could get my hands on. I spent every hour I could, Playing, watching and dreaming of being a sports superstar. Around the age of 13, my three main sports were Baseball, Basketball and SOCCER. My soccer team, which I had been a part of since I was 5, was amazing. State Champions, Premier Level and was the center of my social life, all of my friends played on the team and everything evolved around our success. But then something happened… I had to make a choice between the sports, a choice I didn’t want to make. I had been cut from my baseball team earlier in the year and made the choice to go to a basketball game instead of a soccer practice. The coach questioned my commitment and I was cut from the team.. and my friends. Once Basketball season ended, I no longer had any sports.

Enter Golf… Awinner short executive course had been built by my house and my mother had urged me to go try. I thought golf was stupid, but decided to try it since I had nothing better to do. I immediately loved it and found joy in the fact that I could play whenever I wanted, without anyone else. I found lifelong friends, played competitively and ultimately earned a scholarship to Saint Martin’s University.

While at Saint Martin’s, I was able to play Division II golf and study Psychology. My focus, sports of course, and more importantly, how experiences in youth sports effect our lives in adulthood. (It’s a well known fact that all Psych majors are trying to “self fix”). My studies led me to apply to a Sports Psychology Doctorate Program, which I was selected as a finalist, but school just wasn’t for me. I withdrew my name and would head out into the “real world”

During my final year at Saint Martin’s, I met my wife Emily, In the Library of all places. She was the cute quiet Librarian, I was the guy who would check out books just to talk to the cute librarian. After finally gaining the courage to ask her out, she said yes, and has been with me ever since.In 2009, Emily moved to Spokane to pursue a career in nursing (shederek and emily is from Spokane originally). After staying behind in Seattle Emily gave me the ultimatum “Move over now, or don’t move over at all”… Easy Choice.  In January 2013, we were married on the beaches of Maui and in July 2015, we welcomed our Son, Luke, into the world and in 2017, we said hi to our Daughter, Everly, for the first time.

Since I moved to Spokane, I have loved every minute. I love the distinct seasons, love the scenery and most of all, love the people. When I’m not on the course teaching or playing, you can find me watching the Seattle Sounders or Seattle Seahawks or diving into a new home improvement project.

Hope that gives you a little look into who I am, and I hope to see you at The Canyon soon!