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Shirley Gambill-DeRego named VIP Professional Woman of the Year

Updated: 
August 4, 2017 - 12:45am

WAIMEA — The National Association of Professional Women (NAPW) honored Shirley Gambill-DeRego as a 2017-18 inductee into its VIP Woman of the Year Circle in July. The Waimea resident is recognized with this prestigious distinction for leadership in finance and nonprofits.

NAPW is the nation’s leading networking organization exclusively for professional women, boasting more than 850,000 members in the thriving eChapter and over 200 operating local chapters.

“I’m pleased to welcome Shirley into this exceptional group of professional women,” said NAPW President Star Jones. “Her knowledge and experience in her industry are valuable assets to her company and community.”

Whether it is her job as a certified mortgage planning specialist at HomeStreet Bank, her work as founder of the Alex and Duke DeRego Foundation, a nonprofit she established in memory of her sons, or her advocacy on behalf of the people of Hawaii, Gambill-DeRego is passionate about what she does.

She has worked in the banking and finance industry for more than 20 years. In her role at Homestreet Bank, she partners with builders and works with local real estate companies such as Hawaii Life, where she provides first-time home buyer workshops. Her goal is to help provide more affordable housing for Native Hawaiians.

As a mother, Gambill-DeRego has faced unspeakable tragedy with the untimely deaths of two of her young sons in a five-year period. Alex, 12, died during a camping trip, most likely from drowning in the ocean, while Duke, 14, was thrown from a golf cart while out with friends who didn’t know how to administer CPR. With faith, courage and perseverance, she has taken these tragedies and used them as a platform to help prevent others.

The mission of the Alex and Duke DeRego Foundation is to “provide young people the right skills to empower them with knowledge and awareness that will safeguard their lives and the lives of others.

The organization offers programs in lifeguarding, water safety, first aid/CPR and rescue, and provides scholarships to deserving students.

Another way Ms.Gambill-DeRego honors her sons’ lives and continues to help others is through her work with Legacy of Life Hawaii, a local organ and tissue donor registry. Gambill-DeRego’s son, Duke, was an organ donor and saved the lives of three men and gave sight back to two women.

NAPW’s mission is to provide an exclusive, highly advanced networking forum to successful women executives, professionals and entrepreneurs where they can aspire, connect and achieve.

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