His Life


Derrick Anthony Hobson was born to Hughes Saunders Hobson, Chief Master Sergeant, and the late Delores Hobson, asst. teacher, in Fort Jackson, South Carolina on August 30, 1956.  An intelligent, proud, and, at times, ornery man, Derrick could always be found with a book in his hand and an idea on his mind. Derrick courageously battled Type 1 Diabetes for 57 years of his life, and on April 1, 2021, Derrick earned his rest and went home to the Lord.

Due to his place in a military family, Derrick’s childhood was spent throughout the U.S. and abroad. He had a special love for the time he spent in Alaska. He often said it was the most beautiful place he’s called home. Derrick received his bachelor’s degree from Howard University in 1979. Following his father’s commitment to Greek life, Derrick became a member of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., Beta Chapter in 1976. Derrick earned his Juris Doctor degree from Howard University School of Law in 1982 where he served as Editor-in-Chief of the Law Journal.  

While in law school, Derrick fell in love with fellow Howard Law graduate, Pamela Carruthers, and in 1985, the two were married.  Together, they enjoyed a wonderful life, culminating in the birth of their purpose for living – their children, Samantha and Camille.  Derrick adored “his girls” and lived his life for them.   

Derrick was an accomplished attorney, serving in many esteemed legal capacities throughout his career.   His passion was for environmental law, and he often said he admired Dr. Seuss’ “The Lorax” because the character dared to “speak for the trees”.  As a law professor at North Carolina Central University, Derrick developed a course on Energy Policy, Economics, and Environmental Law. Throughout his life, he volunteered his legal talents in support of many environmental causes. 

Derrick was an avid golfer and tennis player for most of his life. Most recently, as a board member of the Eno Community Tennis Association, Derrick founded the Duke - Eno Adaptive and Abilities Tennis Program in 2019. This collaboration between Duke University Tennis students and the Eno CTA works to bring the joy of tennis to people with physical, intellectual, and developmental disabilities. As the Director of Abilities Tennis for the Eno CTA, Derrick created and managed the Abilities Clinics that were held both in-person and on YouTube in times of Covid. He believed that the game of tennis should be accessible to people with all abilities and hoped that the birth of this program would help contribute to the breaking down of accessibility barriers in the game.  

Derrick wanted to see the world changed for the better. He had a curious mind, a sensitive heart, and a passion for sustainability. He was a person who would stand in wonder at the magnificence of a beautiful tree, and he taught his children to do the same. He was a lover of history, sci fi, and critical thought. He could talk your ear off and was always one for a corny joke. Derrick was brilliant, tender, encouraging, and loving. He loved God and he will be missed and cherished forever.

Derrick is survived by his loyal father, Hughes Saunders Hobson and his wife Doris, of Fort Washington, Maryland; his devoted and caring wife, Pamela; his loving children, Samantha and Camille Hobson; and a host of aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, friends, and colleagues.  Derrick was preceded in death by his loving mother, Delores Hobson, and his younger brother, Michael Hobson.