Bob Burke is an author, attorney, historian…and a collector of autographs. He started collecting in 1962 when he wrote to presidential candidate Barry Goldwater and asked for an autographed picture. Burke continued his autograph collection when he worked in Oklahoma City as a radio disc jockey and eagerly sought autographs as musical celebrities toured on concert. He now subscribes to a service that provides him with the home addresses of celebrities.
Over the years Burke has written to thousands of stars, and proudly states that he has "written to most of the famous people in the world." Occasionally, he also trades with other collectors to obtain rare pieces. Today, Burke owns an extensive collection of autographs in the areas of film, television, music, politics, sports, historical figures and more, part of which he has gifted to the UCO Archives and Special Collections.
The Bob Burke Film and Television Autograph Collection contains autographed scripts, photographs, movie posters, and more from television and film's biggest stars.
Burke has received numerous honors and awards for his work, as a practicing attorney and and Oklahoma author and historian. He has published over 70 historical non-fiction books.
Burke has been named to the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame, inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame and has been recognized with the 2006 Lifetime Achievement Award by the Oklahoma Center for the Book.
One of his books was co-authored with UCO professor Dr. Patricia Loughlin. The book, "Building Traditions, Educating Generations: A History of the University of Central Oklahoma," features a comprehensive overview of UCO history from the early 1890s to the present, and is an official Oklahoma Centennial project.
The University of Central Oklahoma recognizes the university's main campus is located on the traditional lands of the Caddo and Wichita people.
Visit the UCO Land Acknowledgement website to learn more.