Derek was raised in the suburbs of Chicago which gave him access to a vast array of different waters throughout the Midwest. He grew up fishing everything from local streams to the Great Lakes. Having access to these waters helped him hone his skill set to become a multi-species angler. It wasn’t until the last few years he was introduced to sport of kayak fishing. Previously he had always been a traditional boat fisherman, but once he hit the water in a kayak it was an instant addiction. While he competes mainly in kayak bass tournaments, you will find him regularly on Lake Michigan trolling for Salmon from a kayak as well. He also enjoys spending time on the ice during the winter months when the local water ways are still frozen. Some of the species he fishes for include Bass, King Salmon, Coho salmon, Brown Trout, Steelhead, Northern Pike, Crappie, Perch and Bluegill. Derek is one of the founding members of the Chicago Chapter of Heroes on the Water. Being a Veteran of the U.S. ARMY, it is something that he is passionate about. He is also on the Board of the Great Lakes Kayak Fishing Series. These activities have provided an avenue towards his overall goal to help grow the sport of kayak fishing in the Chicago area while helping others get on the water and enjoy what the outdoors has to offer. Derek also represents Lowrance, Malone, Werner Paddles, Cal Coast, NRS, Rod Glove, Repala, 13 Fishing, NetBait, All-Terrain Tackle.
“When on a small inland lake or river that isn’t normally accessible by land or other boats, you can find some of the most relaxing and serine areas to fish and explore. However when out on Lake Michigan and trolling for salmon and your mind is clear as you are paddling along, the second that your line gets hit by that fish, a rush comes over you that is unexplainable.”