Softball Player Profile: Randy Rothenbuehler

Larry Wolfe

It’s a good thing we don’t put names on our uniform backs ‘cause Randy Rothenbuehler’s wouldn’t fit! He has the “honor” of having the longest unhyphenated surname of anyone to ever play Sun Lakes softball! A native of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Randy graduated from Lincoln High, then went directly into the workforce. He followed in the footsteps of his parents and grandfather and became an employee of John Morrell & Company, a large meat processing and packing company with around 3,500 employees.

Randy worked at John Morrell for 17 years, but decided a change was in order when the meat packers union began a lengthy strike. A friend talked him into moving to Phoenix and working for Hoffman Southwest Corporation (HSW). (The company provides a full spectrum of plumbing and drain services and has the largest Roto-Rooter network in the country.) That turned out to be a great move, as Randy would enjoy a 30-year career at HSW. He worked eight years as a plumber before being promoted to Safety, Health & Environmental Manager. He underwent training at the University of California-San Diego, earning his OSHA certification there. For the last several years of his career, he was responsible for HSW’s OSHA compliance throughout the western states. Randy retired last March and began his “new career” as a Sun Lakes retiree.

When Randy and his wife Debbie moved to Sun Lakes, they knew no one but after several months, they now have “a hundred or so” friends! That’s due to Randy’s involvement in Sun Lakes softball, playing in three golf groups and being a member of the Hiking Club. He says the camaraderie and friendship of the members of all these groups has been unbelievable.

Randy has a long history of involvement in baseball and softball programs dating back to Little League. After playing youth baseball, he coached Little League teams for a couple years and was the player-manager of a AA slow-pitch team, the Sioux Falls Bandits, for a dozen years, leading them to 10 city championships, five state titles and three Regional Championships. His teams also qualified for the Nationals four times. Additionally, he was an American Softball Association (ASA) Commissioner for four years, organizing tournaments and performing other administrative functions for the organization. Randy is now beginning his Sun Lakes “managerial career” as leader of the Wolfe & Associates team.

Debbie and Randy have been together over 25 years; their blended family includes three sons and a grandchild. Randy’s son and grandson live in Chicago, so he visits there often. The other kids live here in Arizona. Although Debbie is still working part time as an RN at Banner Health, they still have time for getaways to a family cabin in Prescott, especially during our hot summer months. They also “do everything” with their two boxers, one a rescue dog.

Randy says he “couldn’t have scripted his life any better” and is looking forward to the next chapters!