Derek joined the University of Kentucky Christian Student Fellowship (CSF) staff after graduating from U of K in 2011. He participated in CSF during his days as an undergraduate student, even taking his first-ever theology class with CSF’s Christian Studies Center. Since then, he’s expressed his keen interest in theology, philosophy, and Biblical studies through incessant postgraduate work. By working in ministry and pursuing theological education, Derek has become convinced of the fittingness of pairing theology and ministry. His doctoral dissertation used the ecclesiological thought of Gregory of Nyssa as a response to philosopher J. L. Schellenberg’s problem of divine hiddenness. Derek’s theological interests are broad. He has published on Gregory of Nyssa and divine hiddenness, but also on the nature of theology and C. S. Lewis’s Till We Have Faces. He’s also written on heaven, the sacraments, technology, the relationship between the Church and the academy, and justice and mercy for the “least of these.”
Derek married his wife, Bethany, in 2016. Their son, Lewis, was born in 2021. Lewis was adopted as an embryo. He was created for an IVF transfer, but, along with some of his siblings, was unused by his genetic parents. He was transferred to Bethany in January 2021. Derek and Bethany are passionate about embryo adoption and encouraging others to consider it. As a couple, they especially enjoy cooking together, taking long walks, traveling, and reminiscing about their time living in Scotland.
In addition to spending time with his family, friends, and theological pursuits, Derek especially enjoys baseball, running, and reading. As a baseball fan, he closely follows the Chicago White Sox and his childhood hero was Frank Thomas. As a runner, he just completed his first half-marathon and plans never to run one again. As a reader, he enjoys books of all kinds, but his favorite authors are Austen, Dostoevsky, Lewis, Tolkien, Waugh, and Wodehouse.