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Cover 41


January 2012

Dare to Disciple


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Free Will Baptist

Chaplain David Trogdon


Leadership comes in all forms and sizes, but the results are the same. Leaders influence behavior and make a difference in people’s lives. Profiling leaders reveals a diverse combination of traits, but changing lives is a common theme.


Leader Profile


Chaplain David Trogdon

David does not dress like most pastors, but as a Free Will Baptist pastor in uniform, he is responsible for 5,000 soldiers and their family members, the five-unit ministry teams of the 1st Aviation Brigade, and 500 soldiers and family members at the chapel where he pastors.

Chaplain Major Trogdon has deployed to Kuwait and Iraq (twice), once with combat engineers and once with EOD (explosive ordinance disposal). He is stationed at Ft. Rucker, Alabama, but currently at Ft. Gordon for a three-month school in leadership to prepare him for the rank of lieutenant colonel.

How does the son of an Indiana pastor end up a soldier who pastors the heroes serving our country? David felt God’s calling on his life at age 12. David preached his first sermon at youth camp not long before joining the Army. He served nine years before submitting to the call on his life. He returned to FWBBC, and after graduating in 1991, he began to pastor Tippett’s Chapel FWB Church in North Carolina. While pursing a Master of Divinity from Southeastern Theological Seminary, he established connections with other chaplain candidates who God used to call David back to the military, this time in a new role.

David describes a chaplain as a “pastor in uniform” who ministers to military families. David quickly gives credit to his dad who helped him learn every facet of pastoring. David’s goal is to do God’s will and says that 95% of a chaplain job—or any ministry leader for that matter—is growing deeper in love with God and your family. David is proud of his kids and “perfect” grandkids.

David, you are a great leader!


More About David:

Describe your quiet time.

“I struggle like everyone but like to spend time with God before work when distractions begin. I combine reading of books and the Word.”

Describe your leadership style.
“I have coined the term C3 Leadership, where leadership includes character (being Christ like), caring (servant-style leadership), and competence (in what you learn and are called to do).”

Describe an ideal date for you and Connie.
“Dinner, a movie, and a walk—any time away from the computer or phone.”

What are the top three books you have ever read (other than the Bible)?
Don’t Waste Your Life by John Piper
Slave: the Hidden Truth About Your Identity in Christ by John MacArthur
And the Angels Were Silent by Max Lucado

What’s your biggest failure?
“I have been very hard on myself through self-imposed perfectionism. The idea of perfect at work, even ministry, has taken me away from caring for my family. My ‘biggest guilt’ is being deployed during my daughter’s 16th year. As ministers, we may spend as much as 80-90 hours a week, and we will never be able to recapture family moments. We need boundaries. The Army can always send another chaplain, the church can get another pastor, but your children cannot get another dad.”

What is your one indulgence?
Starbucks: tall, strong coffee with cream.

Paper or Plastic Questions
Mountains or ocean? Mountains
Music or talk radio? Music
Coke or Pepsi? Diet Pepsi
Email or texting? Texting
Mac or PC? PC

David Trogdon, you are a great leader (and hero)!


©2009 ONE Magazine, National Association of Free Will Baptists