she worked tirelessly to make ….
she worked tirelessly to make her life and that of her children better and meaningful. Her children are now grown with successful careers and children of their own. Instead of retiring into a life of leisure, Derby has dedicated her life to serving her community.
For five years starting in 2007, she served as an officer for the Leisure World Korean American Club, the last two years, as the president.
In 2012, Derby started the Sunshine Club, one of the larger clubs in Leisure World. It was started using the Leisure World Weekly newspaper as the textbook to help non-native speakers improve their English. She now works to bring various leaders from inside and outside the community to empower and inform members. She even kept the club going by Zoom during the pandemic.
Derby has served on the Golden Age Foundation (GAF) Board since 2012. GAF, the philanthropic arm of Leisure World, is dedicated to serving the special needs of residents. She has been GAF president for the last three years.
She is well known in LW for her altruistic volunteerism. She was a leader in an effort to supply thousands of free masks to residents during the pandemic and oversees the quarterly document shredding events. She is especially proud of working with Meals on Wheels to provide food for isolated residents who lack resources and working to facilitate Leisure World’s COVID- 19 vaccine clinics.
Derby’s dedication to two Centenarian Appreciation Luncheons were recognized by the community.
She is currently coordinating with the GAF Board for the third centenarian event on April 20. Because of the pandemic, this will involve visits by volunteers instead of a luncheon.
In her leisure time, Derby enjoys the Joyful Line Dance class on Thursdays, and she has performed on the stage with the Suede Sole Dancers group for special occasions since 2014. Derby is proud to be a video production coordinator with the Video Producers Club.
Derby has always been thankful for the many wonderful opportunities given to her and her family, which nurtures her desire to serve others.
“My children and I received so many blessings when we moved to America and now I am in a position to give back,” she said.
Derby is also grateful for the many supportive friends she has made in LW.
Without them, she wouldn’t be able to reach out to the community she has been helping since 2007.
“Leisure World is the most wonderful place to live,” she said.
Among other women who received awards were Je’net Kre- itner, Garden Grove, founder and CEO, Grandma’s House of Hope, and Robyne Wood, Huntington Beach, founder and executive director, Robyne’s Nest, won Compassionate Community awards, among others.
This is the first year Steele’s office hosted the Women of Distinction Awards since she took office on Jan. 3, 2021.