Bob Wright Scholarship

These scholarships were established by Bob Wright, President and CEO, Oak Bay Marine Group of Companies, on behalf of his employees who work at the Oak Bay Marine Group.

Many UVic students and UVic alumni have worked with the Oak Bay Marine Group over the years, and Bob Wright has always valued their UVic education.  In establishing these scholarships, he wants to help more students experience the tremendous benefits of a UVic education and encourage their interest in the oceans.

Robert (Bob) H. Wright modestly describes himself as, “just a gumboot fisherman who sells fish hooks for a nickel a piece.” However, Bob has spent his career building the largest sport fishing operation in North America, the Oak Bay Marine Group of Companies, of which he is President and CEO.

Born in Regina, Bob grew up on the Prairies where his family was always one of the poorest in the neighbourhood.  Some of his favourite childhood memories are of fishing in the local creeks.  He quit school in grade ten and began working for the Edmonton Bulletin organizing paper carriers. During this time he continued to be involved with the Sea Cadets and took a field trip that provided his first opportunity to see the awe-inspiring Pacific Ocean.

He then heard about all the fish in the ocean and the bounty of wildlife, which made him decide to move to the West Coast. He has lived in Victoria since 1951.  After arriving in Victoria, Bob worked in newspapers for 12 years, while always keeping his eye on the ocean.  In 1962 he saw his opportunity and beat out several established businesspeople for the right to build the Oak Bay Marina.

Today, the Oak Bay Marine Group includes resorts, marinas and attractions in Canada, the United States and the Bahamas and employs over 1,000 staff and management.

Over the years Bob has served BC and Canada through activities such as being a director for the Victoria Marine Resources Centre, and a commissioner for the Canada–Pacific Salmon Treaty. He is a life member of the International Association of Aquatic Animal Medicine and the Explorer’s Club.

Bob has also been active in the Victoria community, including such initiatives as the placement of the original totem pole in Beacon Hill Park, spearheading the original City of Victoria’s Heritage Program and serving as a director for both the Victoria Symphony and Art Gallery. Other affiliations include serving as Vice Chair of BC Ferries, Managing Director of  The BC Steamship Company, and he was also instrumental in the creation of Chinatown’s Gate of Harmonious Interest.

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