Robert Wilson entered the University of British Columbia in 1953 and was soon recruited to their elite varsity rowing team. After winning the Canadian Championships in 1954, he and his coxed eights crew (Douglas McDonald, Lawrence West, and the non-Olympians Ken Drummond, Mike Harris, Ray Sierpina, Glen Smith, Tom Toynbee, and Herman Zloklikovits) travelled to that year’s British Empire and Commonwealth Games, where they brought home the gold medal. The team split up after coming in second at the 1955 Henley Royal Regatta, but Wilson remained and earned his second national title in 1956, qualifying him to attend that year’s Summer Olympics. There, alongside McDonald, West, David Helliwell, Philip Kueber, Richard McClure, Bill McKerlich, Carlton Ogawa, Donald Pretty, he won a silver medal in the eights. Two years later he was Canadian Champion for the third and final time, an achievement that sent him to the 1958 British Empire and Commonwealth Games, where he was able to defend his crown. He graduated the following year, moved to Alberta, and had a lengthy career in the oil industry. He has been inducted into the University of British Columbia Sports Hall of Fame (1999) with his 1954 gold medal-winning crew, the Canadian Olympic (1958), British Columbia Sports (1976), and UBC Sports (2010) Halls of Fame as a member of his silver medal-winning crew, and the Kamloops Sports Hall of Fame (2013) individually.