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Delores "Dee" Soderquist was born on August 28, 1930. She grew up in Southeastern Michigan and didn’t aspire to attend college until she received a small scholarship to attend Michigan State Normal College. While at MSNC, Dee was active with Kappa Delta Pi, Theta Lambda Sigma and participated in the Choral Union. During her years in college she also met her future husband, Bill Brehm. Dee graduated in 1952 with a major in special education focusing on the mentally impaired.
After college, Dee and Bill were married and moved to the San Diego area where Dee taught prior to starting their family and Bill pursued a career in business. The Brehms have been blessed with successful lives, Bill having an accomplished career in public service and business.
Looking back on her time in college, Dee attributes her success to that initial scholarship. Dee and Bill wanted to give back to Dee’s alma mater by establishing an endowed scholarship that would offer special education students a life-changing award, just as she received when she was a student. Their scholarship is the first one million dollar scholarship that Eastern Michigan University has ever received.