In Memoriam: Bob Antle
Robert Victor (Bob) Antle, Salinas patriarch and industry leader, has passed away. He was born on November 10, 1935, in Watsonville, California.
"There is a lot to this business," Bob told me in a recent interview. "The people, the partnerships, and all the deals you make along the way. I have lived on multiple coasts. New York, California, Mexico... they all have a different story.”
While he was in school, Bob began working on his father’s lettuce farm as a loader in 1949. His first job after graduating from Stanford was directing the Company’s carrot business “Antle Carrots.” Over time, he worked his way through the company into Sales and Marketing and eventually became the General Sales Manager.
In 1966, he made the move to the East Coast to develop the House of Bud, a wholesaler of fruits and vegetables. Under Bob’s leadership the House of Bud opened facilities in New York, Boston, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and Brussells, Belgium.
When his father unexpectedly passed away at the age of 58, Bob took on the role of CEO for all Antle activities. Under his leadership, he merged the Bud Antle companies with Castle & Cooke, Inc. (now Dole Foods Company, Inc.) and joined its senior management, serving on its Board of Directors until he helped form Tanimura & Antle in 1982.
His whole career, Bob was passionate about the industry. “If you don’t really like what you are doing, don’t do it,” he once told me. This is not an industry for the faint of heart.
Bob recently received the Grower-Shipper Association’s E.E. (Gene) Harden Award for Lifetime Achievement in Central Coast Agriculture to celebrate his significant and lasting contributions to agriculture and his extensive and longtime generosity to philanthropic and educational institutions.
He is survived by: his beautiful and adoring wife, Sue Antle; his brother, Kenneth Antle, Tucson, Arizona; his sons, Rick L. (Tonya) Antle, Mike V. (Cass) Antle; and his twin daughters, Kathy (Vince Ciolino) Della-Rose, Karen (Joseph) Hebl of Eau Claire, Wisconsin; along with his 21 grandchildren and a great-grandson.
A Celebration of Life Ceremony will be held on Monday August 11, 2014 at five o clock in the afternoon at the CSUMB World Theater. In lieu of customary remembrances, the family requests that donations be made directly to one of Bob's favorite charities/organizations: The Bob Antle Scholarship Fund, c/o CSUMB 100 Campus Center, Seaside CA 93955, The Salvation Army of Monterey, 1491 Contra Costa St, Seaside, California 93955 or the Panetta Institute for Public Policy, 100 Campus Center, Building 86E, CSUMB, Seaside, California 93955.
Bob’s influence can be seen throughout the industry. He personally touched many of us here at AndNowUKnow. We would like to offer our deepest condolences to Bob’s family and friends.