Robert C. Salisbury was born in Brooklyn, NY on November 7, 1943. When he was two years old, his father who had been a B-24 pilot in the Army Air Corps during WWII, accepted a civilian position at a US company in Rio de Janeiro Brazil and moved there with his family. Bob lived in Rio for ten years where he attended the American School. After Brazil, the family moved to Mexico City where they lived for three years. When Bob was fifteen years old the family moved to Miami, FL where Bob completed high school.
Bob attended Florida State University, earned a BS in Business Administration, and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the USAF through the AFROTC program in April 1965. He attended USAF undergraduate pilot training in class 66-H at Reese AFB, Lubbock, Texas between June 1965 and June 1966. After pilot training, he was assigned to combat crew training in the F-100 Super Sabre at Luke AFB, Arizona.
After completing F-100 training, he attended survival school at Fairchild AFB and jungle survival school at Clark AB (Philippines). In March 1967, Bob reported for duty in the 308th Tactical Fighter Squadron (31st Tactical Fighter Wing) at Tuy Hoa Air Base, Vietnam as an F-100 pilot. Between March 1967 and March 1968, he flew 336 combat missions and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross with one oak leaf cluster and the Air Medal with fifteen oak leaf clusters.
In April 1968, Bob reported to the 79th Tactical Fighter Squadron (20th Tactical Fighter Wing) at RAF Woodbridge, England. In July 1970, he transferred to the 492nd Tactical Fighter Squadron (48th Tactical Fighter Wing) at RAF Lakenheath, England. During the three years in England, he served on Victor Alert and participated in regular rotations to Italy, Turkey, Libya, and Spain.
In April 1971, Bob returned to the U.S., left active duty, and was assigned to the USAF Reserves. In 1976, he was appointed an Air Force Liaison Officer, counseling, and screening candidates for the USAF Academy and AFROTC Scholarship. He served as a Liaison Officer for fifteen years reaching the post of Liaison Officer Commander for Western Michigan. Bob retired from the USAF Reserves in 1991 as a Lt. Col.
After leaving active military duty, Bob earned an MBA from Florida State University in April 1972. He worked for two years in banking before taking a job at The Upjohn Company, a Michigan-based global pharmaceutical company in April 1974. At Upjohn, he held various financial positions and was appointed Chief Financial Officer in 1988. In 1995, he helped negotiate a merger of equals with Pharmacia, AB, a Swedish Pharmaceutical company, which led to the creation of Pharmacia & Upjohn, Inc. He served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of the merged company in Windsor, UK from November 1995 thru April 1998.
While working at Upjohn and Pharmacia & Upjohn, Bob served on the board of a joint venture in Japan and several Boards of Directors including three insurance companies and a bank. He also served on the Boards of the Greater Kalamazoo United Way and the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts and led the 1990 Kalamazoo United Way fund drive.
After retiring from Pharmacia & Upjohn, Bob served on the Boards of several life sciences and biotech companies, was co-general partner of an investment fund and advisory director of two regional venture capital funds. He continues to chair the investment committees of three endowment funds and two municipal pension funds overseeing assets under management exceeding $1.5 billion.
Bob served as assistant editor of the Super Sabre Society Intake magazine from 2015 through 2022 and became editor for in 2023. In his spare time, he enjoys playing golf and hiking the mountains near his summer home in North Carolina.
Bob and his wife of 58 years, Linda, have two daughters and two grown grandsons and split their time between their homes near Sarasota, FL, and Boone, NC.