Robert (Bob) Judson ColeRobert (Bob) Judson Cole

Entrepreneur/Community Leader/Philanthropist

California State University, Long Beach

An admired and influential real estate entrepreneur in Long Beach, Robert (Bob) Cole was best known for developing a new method for trading real estate summed up in his advertising slogan, "Trade anything anywhere."

Bob Cole Realty was a thriving, innovative business that contributed to the economic prosperity of the Long Beach area for more than 35 years. Cole credited his wife and "partner in all things" Regena Cole for playing an essential role in their business success.

Born in Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1916, Cole moved with his family to Detroit as a young boy. He attended Alma College in Michigan where he played piano and was active in boxing and football. He moved to Long Beach in 1947 and soon came to love the city, the community and California State University, Long Beach.

Passionate about music his entire life, Cole enjoyed playing piano for family and friends. When confronted with a long and challenging illness that ultimately took his life, he and Regena Cole made the decision to provide for the establishment of an endowed estate gift to support scholarships for music students. This historic gift from the Bob Cole Trust—the largest ever received by CSULB—created a major conservatory of music, which was named in his honor.

The Bob Cole Conservatory of Music is a vital and beloved part of campus and stands as a beacon of opportunity for talented young people who share the Coles' boundless enthusiasm for music and for life.

In recognition of his many accomplishments and contributions to the university and the community, the Board of Trustees of the California State University and California State University, Long Beach are proud to posthumously confer upon Bob Cole the honorary degree of Doctor of Fine Arts.