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Hi I'm Derik

I grew up in a beach community in Florida. I was a wrestler in high school. Now I am a dad and a coach. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I love to attend local sports events, hike, and enjoy water sports. I spend time watching my children compete in volleyball, wrestling, football, and soccer.

Why I am a Mormon

In my early school years, I struggled with a learning disability. Reading was very difficult for me. After struggling for years, my 6th grade teachers told my parents that I would not be able to achieve a high school diploma. However, my parents were people of faith and did not accept this decree. Instead of accepting what they were told, they prayed for me, encouraged me, and worked with me. In the 8th grade, I was tested to determine whether I would be allowed to pursue a traditional high school diploma. After passing the test, I was mainstreamed with the general student population. These experiences taught me to rely on Heavenly Father. As I regularly read the scriptures, my learning disability decreased more and more. Even as my disability decreased, I recall purposefully not taking my scriptures to church to avoid the embarrassment of public reading. Finally, I beat the odds given by my 6th grade teachers—I graduated high school. After high school, I went onto to college with a secret weapon: my faith in God. In college, I prayed and worked like never before. An important milestone in my life was earning a “B” in a college level reading course. This trust in the Lord provided me with the confidence to serve a fulltime mission. My daily scripture reading and gospel study on my mission removed any concern I had with regard to my reading limitations. On a particular occasion, 5-6 months into my mission in Scottsdale, Arizona, the Lord spoke to me. He said “through me all things are possible; you can even become a doctor.” This is something that I never imagined was possible. After my mission, I returned to college. While I am not entirely sure I was willing put forth the work necessary to earn a doctorate degree at first, I did have the faith to know that it was possible. I finally decided that I would do it! I finished my undergraduate course work and was accepted into a doctorate program. I worked extremely hard and prayed intently and earned a doctorate degree, magna cum laude. I was second in my class to another member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I actually graduated with the class that started ahead of me, finishing 4 months ahead of my classmates. That is not the end of my faith story. I continue to call upon Heavenly Father, and he has continued to bless my life.

How I live my faith

I serve the in the church locally working with the leaders in the youth and children’s programs. Serving my fellow man has become a way of life. The words of prophet come to mind "That when you are in the service of your fellow man you are only in the service of your God."