Bio written in 2009 when awarded Skip Prosser Achievement Award
Robert H. Atkinson ’84 is the second Kings Pointer to receive the George Edward “Skip” Prosser ’72 Achievement Award.
Rob epitomizes the very essence of everything “Skip” Prosser ’72 represented. Rob’s undying love and never ending sacrifices for Kings Point and Kings Point Athletics along with his continued efforts to help others are a true testament to his unselfishness.
Whether his contributions to the Academy and Kings Point Athletics are in the form of financial support, recruiting assistance or helping alumni whenever and wherever he can, Rob has always put the Academy and others before himself. He is extremely active in the annual Heidmar Blue and Gray Golf Classics, which his company sponsors annually. You can also find Rob on the KP sidelines as his son, Robbie ’11 (USMMA), competes for the Mariners Lacrosse team.
Despite the professional demands on Rob, he nonetheless devotes considerable time creating opportunities in organized sports for children in his community and midshipmen at the Academy. He believes that valuable lessons are learned by participating in athletics such as winning with humility, losing gracefully, and the values of teamwork and leadership. Over the years, he has spent countless hours helping to develop local youth programs in ice hockey, lacrosse and sailing. Most recently, he acted as a liaison between college recruiters and a local girls soccer club helping to place many of the girls in the college of their choice. 14 of the 16 girls on the team went on to play soccer at a higher level at schools including Harvard, Brown, Cornell, Charleston, Colgate, Monmouth, Albany and St. Joseph’s.
Despite the level of play that any of these athletes may achieve, it is hoped that through Rob’s and his fellow coaches’ efforts that these young athletes will take away confidence and pride in themselves, a sense of fair play, and a respect for their opponents, their teammates, their coaches and a love of the game. Whatever that game may be.
During his plebe year at Kings Point, Rob was a goalie for the fledgling ice hockey club (under Chris Doyle ’81) and the first goaltender for Jim Godfrey’s (’82) newly formed Kings Point Lacrosse club. During his senior year at the Academy he was chosen as a Second-Team All Star for the Metropolitan Ice Hockey Conference. Unfortunately, an injury to his left shoulder during the hockey play-offs that year kept him sidelined from his senior lacrosse season.
Upon graduation, as an active duty ensign in the Naval Reserve, Rob received orders to the USS Nicholson (DD 982), where he served as an engineering officer aboard for the next three years. The Nicholson was involved in numerous operations during that time including Refresher Training in Guantanamo Bay and a deployment to the Persian Gulf with Mid East 3-86. After his release from active duty in 1987, he joined Randy Johnson (’83) at Advanced Technology, a defense contracting firm in Crystal City, Va. While working on defense contracts concerning Spruance Class destroyers and Oliver Hazard Perry Class frigates, he became heavily involved in tribology and marine lubricants. He soon followed this discipline, taking a job as a Lubricant Sales Engineer (and ultimately East Coast Sales Manager) for BP Marine Lubricants.
Rob’s sales and marketing activities with BP ultimately led him into fuel sales. In October of 1993, Kristensons-Petroleum, Inc. (KPI) brought him in as a junior partner and manager of Marketing & Sales. Four years later, with the help of a senior industry player, Rob bought out his former partners and took over the reins at KPI. Over the next ten years, the company expanded and opened offices in Valparaiso (Chile) and Seattle while also taking on a partner with offices in London, Istanbul and Singapore. This growth and expansion helped to create arguably the largest, privately held bunker brokerage and trading firm in the world. Last year, the KPI Bridge Oil Group was responsible for more than $1.5 billion in sales of marine fuels.
Rob currently resides in Fair Haven (NJ) with his wife, Christine. The couple has three children; Robbie (KP ’11), Hope (CofC ’12) and Sam (14 y/o).