About Dr. D. (Rowdy)

Dr. Dave Rough served as the Superintendent of the Dayton Christian School System.  He completed his 29th year of ministry with the school system during the 2016-17 school year before entering retirement. Burdened with the commitment to provide Christian schooling to as many students as possible, Dr. D (trail name Rowdy) desired to combine his love for hiking with his passion for Christian education. His 2014 thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail reflected his heart to raise tuition dollars for families that could not not afford the rising costs of K-12 schooling. You can read of his amazing adventure in his book, HIKE IT FORWARD, available through Amazon.com.

Dave was born in Franklin, PA in 1950, moved to Morgantown , WV when he was 4 years old. He developed a love for hiking and the woods as he traversed the paths of the state parks. Over the years he has logged in hundreds of miles in the West Virginia hills of Canaan Valley, Blackwater Falls, and Pipestem state parks.

Dr.D. graduated from West Virginia Wesleyan College; had the opportunity to earn masters’ degrees from both Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky (1972 – Hermeneutics) and Grace Theological Seminary in Winona Lake, Indiana (1998 – School Administration). In 2008, he earned an Ed.D. from Indiana Wesleyan  University in Organizational Leadership.

Rowdy has a wonderful family. He has been married to Cathy for 46 years (they celebrated #42 while he is on the trail). Together they have four incredible children: Ben and his wife Vanessa (and two beautiful daughters and one son) live just outside of Atlanta, GA.; Matthew is married to his lovely bride, Jen and they reside in Tipp City, Ohio; Bethany and four amazing children) reside in Springboro, OH;  and Dan and his wife Sara are raising four  wonderful children in Miamisburg, OH.


3 thoughts on “About Dr. D. (Rowdy)

  1. Lee

    As one thinking of doing the AT, I have been following several journals of current hikers & researching much about the gears, terrains, hikers experiences, and anything else related to the AT. Most of the hikers I been following are past Virginia except you and another one. Anyway, we leave in Fl but we have a place in Waynesville 30 mins from I40 crossing and I would like to do something while I,m in the mts. If you needed a zero day, needed to visit REI or small outfitter in town, take a shower or would like to slack pack to Max Patch from I40 crossing, please let me help. When you be crossing I40? Either way, I be there one day with some trail magics( no magic I guess). Good luck with your hike through the smokies.


  2. Tom W Minor

    Today was the first day I have seen or read your blog. I enjoyed hearing about your journey. God bless you my brother and give you continued safety as you finish your hike!! Tom Minor


    • Tom – a Thanks so much for checking my blog. I try to post most days on the trail just sharing a quick thought and a picture or two. Please check I when you can.


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