Community Rancho Santa Fe

Cross to be honored at Salvation Army luncheon

Deborah Cross, president of The Country Friends, is one of 12 women to be honored at the San Diego Chapter of The Salvation Army Women of Dedication luncheon on May 30.

The theme of this year’s annual luncheon is Wonder Women. In addition to Cross, the other honorees are Suzi Day, Dayna Hoff, Kimberly Hunt, Laurnie Durisoe, Angela Harris, Regina Kurtz, Claudia Thompson, Vickie Turner, Kathryn Vaughn, Sally Watt Oxley and Rana Sampson.

Deborah Cross is board president of The Country Friends in Rancho Santa Fe. Courtesy photo

This marks the 53rd annual Women of Dedication Luncheon, which will take place at the San Diego Marriott Marquis and Marina.

Following 15 years of overseeing her audiology practice in San Diego County, Cross sold her businesses and concentrated her time on her family and philanthropic work. Before becoming president of The Country Friends in 2015, she joined the board of directors in 2008. Over the years, Cross was on the fundraising committee for the Boys & Girls Clubs of San Dieguito as well as supported charities such as the Red Cross, Susan G. Komen, The Midway Museum, Vision of Children and more. 

Cross said she is honored by the Women of Dedication recognition and is learning more about the Salvation Army. At an informal luncheon she attended last November, she said gained a deeper understanding of what the organization has done over the years and the impact it makes in other countries.

“It really opened my eyes,” she said. “The presentation about the Salvation Army was wonderfully educational for me.”

Cross had no idea she would be nominated as an honoree. She was officially notified in October 2017. She and her husband had been out of town, and there was a voicemail when they returned home. A delivery from the day before was waiting for her.

“It was a giant bouquet of a dozen yellow roses — the biggest buds I’ve ever seen on roses — and they lasted for weeks,” she said.  There was a letter attached to the flowers — that’s how I got notified. It was incredibly beautiful.”

When Cross attended the informal luncheon in November and learned about the other 11 honorees, she was humbled by all the philanthropic work they had accomplished. To be in the company of these other honorees is extraordinary, she said.

“They have done such fantastic things,” she said.

Now that Cross has a more in-depth knowledge of The Salvation Army and the excellent work that it does, she looks forward to supporting the organization in the future. 

“It never dawned on me how committed and devoted the people who work for The Salvation Army are in giving back to their communities,” Cross said. “I’m excited about this recognition, and really, quite humbled.”

To learn more about The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary Women of Dedication luncheon on May 30, visit