With sadness, we share the passing of Chet Derr Jr., President and CEO of the Derr Flooring Company. He left this world peacefully surrounded by his family and wife of almost 56 years, Denny.
“Coming from a family of great company leaders and hardwood flooring advocates, Chet Jr. was always a true gentleman and great voice for the Derr Flooring Company and the entire industry,” says Tommy Maxwell, president of Maxwell Hardwood Flooring.
“Chet Derr Jr. was one of the industry’s finest leaders who placed a high value on personal relationships with customers and vendors. Chet had a tremendous passion for the hardwood flooring and family businesses within the industry,” says Neil Poland, president of Mullican Flooring.
After leaving the Ocean City Beach Patrol in October of 1965, Chet Derr Jr. began the career that would define the rest of his life. He grew up in the industry working alongside his grandfather, father, and uncle, and in January of 1994, he was named president of the Derr Flooring Company.
After the death of Chet Derr Sr. in November of 2000, he became President and CEO. Under his leadership, Derr Flooring has grown from a single location in Philadelphia to seven warehouses in four different states. It is now one of the largest hard surface distributors in the country. Chet Derr Jr. was a pioneer of the early “Pro Show” and a strong advocate for the flooring contractor. He thoroughly enjoyed his interactions with vendors and customers. Most of all, he loved his employees. Chet kept an open-door policy, and any time, any day, employees had full access to his attention and wisdom. He will be missed, but his legacy lives on in the fourth and fifth generations of family members now employed at Derr Flooring.