Stanley K. Derby
April 29, 2008
Stanley K. Derby, a physics professor at Western Michigan University for three decades, died March 29. He was 87.
Derby, who attended WMU from 1940 to 1943, joined the faculty in 1955. He retired with emeritus status in 1984. His major area of study was optics, and he developed teaching and research programs at the University in the then-emerging fields of spectroscopy, lasers and holography.
While at WMU, Derby was active in such campus organizations as the Faculty Senate and such professional organizations as the Michigan Section of the American Association of Physics Teachers, of which he was a past president. He also served on the national committee for reviewing Graduate Record tests in the physical sciences and received the WMU Alumni Association's Teaching Excellence Award in 1978.
Derby served in the Army Air Corps in North Africa and the Mediterranean Theater during World War II. When he returned to America, he continued his military career in the Air Force Reserve, retiring with the rank of Colonel in 1976. He was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal in 1977 by President Jimmy Carter.
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