Donna Derr

13 entries
  • "I have never met anyone who articulated the CWS mission..."
    - Joe Moran
  • "Donna was a colleague and friend. She was a joy to work..."
    - Judith Adams
  • "My deepest condolences to the Derr family as you work..."
    - Susan Ryan
  • "I was so blessed to know and work with Donna over many..."
    - Bev Abma
  • "Foods Resource Bank (FRB) is grateful to have benefited..."
    - Laurie Kaniarz
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Donna Jean Derr, age 61, of Sykesville, died Tuesday, September 5, 2017 at her home. Born November 14, 1955 in Frederick, she was the daughter of the late Edward N. Derr Jr. and Jean Frock Derr. She was the wife of Francis Stepanek, her husband of 30 years. Donna was a 1973 graduate of Francis Scott Key High School. After high school she was employed with the Social Security Administration in Woodlawn while completing her studies at Towson State University where she received her B.A. degree. She also completed continuing education courses in: Volunteer Management, Disasters and Development; and International Law, Disaster and Armed Conflict. Donna's care, her compassion and her earnest commitment were felt by everyone she touched, or even met. This was evident in her work with the Church of the Brethren for over 16 years in volunteer, refugee and disaster response ministries and her 18 years with Church World Service leading and guiding the development and humanitarian work. Most recently, she served as the Executive Director of CWS-CROP. Donna has been instrumental in global networks of faith-based alliances to support the marginalized. She gave many hours and much talent to these groups, and is highly respected for her contributions. Her passion, faith and candor endeared her to her many colleagues and friends, far and near, and she was counted on for her wisdom, humor and spirit of gratitude. Donna blessed all of those who knew her. In addition to her husband she is survived by a brother, Brian D. Derr and wife Leeann of Gettysburg, PA; nephews, Michael Dustin and Christopher Brandon Derr; niece, Kirsten Blevins; goddaughter, Kelly Sorensen; sister-in-law, Brenda Derr; aunts and uncle, Byron and Ginny Grossnickle, Dorothy and Anna Frock and numerous cousins. She was predeceased by a brother, Gary Lee Derr in 2005; aunts, Evelyn Immler, Patty Harp, Ann Derr Graham and Elizabeth Robertson; uncles, Bob Immler, Carroll, Clarence and Charles Frock, Dave Harp and Ralph Robertson Sr. Per Donna's wishes there will only be a private family service. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Joanne Grossnickle Scholarship Fund, c/o Union Bridge Church of the Brethren, P.O. Box 518, Union Bridge, MD 21791; to Church World Service, P.O. Box 968, Elkhart, IN 46515 or to Benjamin's (Krider's) U.C.C., 208 Krider's Church Rd., Westminster, MD 21158 (include on memo line: for the cemetery). The family invites you to leave a message or memory of our "tribute wall" at

Published in Carroll County Times on Sept. 8, 2017
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