Bruce Woolpert lived by the principles of hard work and changing lives. He was a respected community member and a beloved father and husband. As the former CEO of Graniterock, he was a mentor and friend to many.
Bruce passed away this year in a tragic boating accident. To honor his legacy, the Woolpert Foundation is supporting the Algebra Academy, an innovative program developed by CSUMB and Graniterock which provides intensive mentoring in algebra during a one-week period for Rolling Hills Middle School students.
Bruce championed the development of the Algebra Academy. As a UCLA math major, he thought math was a key to learning. He tutored his own children. Later, Bruce took his love for the subject to the local community.
“He would come home from the Algebra Academy and he was so excited…Bruce was thrilled these kids were getting the experience and their parents were involved,” said Rose Ann Woolpert, his wife.
Bruce worked closely with CSUMB math professor Hongde Hu. As part of the academy, middle school students, many of whom would be first-generation college students, come to CSUMB and study algebra on campus for a day. It allows students to visualize a university setting, meet people like Professor Hu and realize that college is for them.
In addition to the Algebra Academy, Bruce was passionate about giving his employees at Graniterock the tools to better themselves. He supported programs at work to improve reading and math skills.
Math doesn’t come easily for everyone. However, working on math skills in middle school can greatly improve performance in high school and college. “When you work for something, you value it more – and importantly, it gives you confidence,” said Rose Ann. “Bruce knew that. Math was his great joy.”