Bob Fine is a lifelong Southwest Minneapolis resident who’s always been active in the community. At Southwest, Bob was a 4 year swimming letterman who ran cross country to stay in shape for swimming. He also lettered in track & field as a high hurdler. At Southwest, Bob was a sportswriter for The Arrow, a member of the German Club, Chess Club and Senior Memorial Committee.
Bob played club water polo at the University of Minnesota, graduating with Math and History majors and a Humanities Minor. Bob went on to graduate from Washington University Law School in St. Louis where he also lettered on the swim team as a first year law student.
The years following Bob’s education cemented him in Minneapolis history with constant community contributions big and small. Bob served 16 years as President or Vice President on the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board beginning in 1997. He also served on the Minneapolis Board of Estimate and Taxation and the Minneapolis Civil Rights Commission for 16 and 19 years respectively. More than any other park commissioner, Bob always emphasized the R in the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB). He was key to the Neiman Athletic Complex development, set up a city-wide youth recreational sports commission, negotiated the airport land trade to create Solomon Park, led the MPRB headquarters Mississippi River development, championed bike trails on Minnehaha Creek paths all while pushing citywide neighborhood park tennis, soccer, baseball, and softball field improvements. Bob is the ultimate Minneapolis youth recreation champion.
Throughout Bob’s storied career, his most notable contribution and source of pride is his youth coaching, spanning 4+ decades. In 1975, Bob began volunteering as a Linden Hills Park youth softball coach and has coached youth softball and baseball teams ever since. He also coached 30 years of youth basketball, 12 years of soccer, 1 year of volleyball and 1 season as the Southwest High Softball Assistant coach. Bob has coached more than 1,000 kids, most of whom attended Southwest where many continued their athletic careers. It’s common for community members to know a child who was once coached by Bob. He’s a Southwest community youth sports staple and his contributions in this community and greater Minneapolis have created a lasting legacy.
Bob and his wife of 50 years, Sylvia, live in Linden Hills. They have 4 Southwest alumni children, Jacob, Andy, Elly and Joe. Bob and Sylvia have 7 grandchildren whom Bob hopes to coach one day.