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In August 1982, he was promoted to avionics manager. During this time, Derby began attending AEA meetings and events, and he eventually served as a member of the AEA board of directors and served as vice chair of the board. He also was named the AEA Member of the Year in 2001.
In January 1987, Derby was promoted again, this time to vice president of line and avionics. After serving in this role for 10 years, Derby became vice president of service marketing in January 1997, where he was responsible for maintaining and expanding the company’s share of the technical services market.
Two years later in January 1999, he was named senior vice president of operations, where he was responsible for the management of the entire organization. In addition, he became a minority shareholder and was a member of the Atlantic Aero Holdings board of directors.
In August 2002, Derby became executive vice president and accountable manager for the repair station.
After his retirement in 2008, the AEA dedicated the Dan Derby Center for Professional Development on Sept. 24, 2008, at its new international headquarters in Lee’s Summit, Mo. Each year, hundreds of AEA members and industry professionals meet in the Derby Center to conduct technical training, industry events and professional development forums at this state-of-the-art facility.