At Krey's retirement in 2002, Chancellor Ann Lydecker noted that Krey had a history at UW-River Falls that began 42 years ago as a student in 1960. "Now she is retiring as one of our most exceptional University members: DeAn holds the coveted title of being a Distinguished Teacher."
Krey earned both her bachelor's and master's degrees at UWRF, and her doctorate from the University of Minnesota. She was a teacher and professor for 37 years, spending five years in public schools and the last 32 years at UWRF. In the early years she was a teacher in Ames Lab School on campus, and then, in the early 1970s she coordinated the establishment of a field-based elementary teacher education site in Stillwater, Minn. One of her major responsibilities for the past 30 years was to lead a three-person team of professors as they offered a 12-credit pre-student teaching experience to 50 juniors each semester.
Krey taught a total of 13 different courses in Teacher Education, with her specialties in Social Studies Methods and Children's Literature. She's been widely published and she is the author of a book on "Children¹s Literature in Social Studies;" and she served as president of the Wisconsin Council for the Social Studies and is a long-time member of its executive board. In the 1980s she served as Associate Dean of the College of Education. However, she never gave up her teaching.
Krey also traveled internationally, co-directing an exchange program for Ames Elementary School children and children from England. She also went twice to Taiwan teacher education institutions as an exchange professor.