The first of three generations of Caldwells at Wake Forest, Robert is a 1962 graduate and father to Cathy (’91) and grandfather to Virginia (’22). A proud brother of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity, Caldwell competed with the men’s golf program from 1960-62. As a former suitemate of legendary men’s basketball student-athlete Len Chappell, Caldwell has supported the Len Chappell Scholarship Fund to permanently establish a legacy for Chappell at Wake Forest.
When did you graduate from Wake Forest?
What was your major and/or minor?
What does being a Demon Deacon mean to you?
Being a Demon Deacon means being constantly committed to service and excellence while always representing what is best about Wake Forest.
Why are you still involved in Wake Forest Athletics?
I am still involved because I believe in the mission of the University and believe in supporting that same mission-based experience for future generations of students.
Why do you feel it is important to give back to the University?
It’s important to give back to shape the future of Wake Forest. Alumni, like myself, have fantastic memories of our time at Wake Forest. We need to pay forward that experience to future students, especially if we can honor and remember folks who shaped our experiences.
What is your current occupation?
President of NC Grange Mutual Insurance Co.
What is your favorite memory of your time at Wake Forest?
So many fond memories to choose from! Some of my favorites stem from my time as a suitemate of Len Chappell. Our freshman year, when freshmen still had to compete to be on the varsity team, Len of course played basketball, while I was a golfer. For several weeks, Len tried to convince me to walk on to the basketball team. Finally, I relented and joined him and the squad during basketball tryouts. After a week, Len then convinced me that it was best for all of us if I went back to the golf team.
What makes you most proud of Wake Forest?
The people that represent the University and the fine students that continue to graduate from Wake Forest.
When you come back to Wake Forest, you always…
Cheer on the Deacs, regardless of sport—and try to check out as many of the incredible new facilities as I can.
I was there when…
Len Chappell and Billy Packer led Wake Forest basketball to the Final Four in 1962.
Who is your favorite coach at Wake Forest, current or past?
So many great ones, but Jesse Haddock was special as a golf coach.
(Please note: This article was originally published in the March 2019 issue of Gold Rush.)