This successful hockey coach first developed his hockey skills as a goalie in Fort Frances, going on to enjoy over 50 years of involvement as a player, coach and hockey administrator. A member of the Jaycees Juvenile Club of Fort Frances, 1952-53 Thunder Bay District and 1953-54 Thunder Bay-Manitoba champions, he earned rookie honours with the Fort William Hurricanes Junior Club in 1955-56 before going on to mind the net for the Fighting Sioux at the University of North Dakota.
Moving behind the bench, he served as an Assistant Coach with the Sioux, contributing to their 1962-63 NCAA Division 1 national title. Taking over as Head Coach in 1964, he led the team to a 3rd place finish in the NCAA Final Four, earning Coach of the Year honours.
Heading to Bemidji State in 1966, Bob took on the challenge of building a hockey program from the ground up. In just two years he led his team to their first of 13 national titles. The only collegiate head coach to have teams reach the Final Four in all four divisions of collegiate hockey championships, his 744 wins are the most by any coach with a single team in college hockey history. Leading his team to an undefeated season in 1984 with a 31-0 record, he set the record for the longest unbeaten streak at 43 games.
After 35 years guiding the Beavers, Bob announced he would retire following the 2000-01 season. It seemed fitting that his final game would be against the Fighting Sioux in front of his many fans from Bemidji and Fort Frances, having come full circle in his amazing hockey career. His success and contributions earned him the prestigious Legend of College Hockey Award in 2001, presented by the Hobey Baker Award Committee. Bob continued his involvement in hockey being named the Commissioner of College Hockey America.
The success of this builder cannot just be measured by the championships won, records set, or levels reached on the ice by former players like NHL'er and Stanley Cup winner Joel Otto. The over 100 former players who have gone on to coach at the high school and college level, are a true testament to the contributions made by this builder of sport.
Inducted into the Northwestern Ontario Sports Hall of Fame, September 28, 2002