Photo Album

The Legacy
Mr. William Rolland Born during the Great Depression, William Rolland came from humble beginnings. Early on in life, he became very aware of how important job security was to a family. As a teenager, he became fascinated with the power and immenseness of steam engines, and at a young age he worked for the Southern Pacific and Pacific Electric Railways. "I remember standing by the side of a locomotive and looking up towards the sky in awe at the massive size and power of such an incredible machine," says Rolland.

Throughout the years, William Rolland has worn many hats. As a young man he pursued acting and modeling, which allowed him to travel the world. Drafted into the Korean War, he played football for the United States Army. Upon returning, he became a police officer, then later transferred to the Los Angeles Fire Department which gave him more time for other endeavors.

His love for cars lead him to build several custom hot rods, 2 of which were showcased on the covers of hot rod magazines. In 1969 he received the Medal of Valor for a heroic fire rescue. Pursuing his love for architecture, he ventured into real estate, and currently owns over 25 properties throughout the U.S. Most recently, he was given an Honorary Doctorate of Laws Degree from Cal Lutheran University.

Rolland has always had a passion for items that are rare or one of a kind. He has been a collector of fine arts and antiques for over 60 years. His personal collections contain hundreds of antique bronzes, porcelains, and fine works of art. "I believe much of my passion for the arts stems from my number one love, architecture," says Rolland.

Rolland is not only a collector, but a philanthropist as well. Through The William Rolland Firefighters Foundation & Educational Institute, Rolland has aided and educated the public and families of firefighters. Most recently, Rolland built a $10 million dollar football stadium at Cal Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, California. Built alongside the stadium, The William Rolland Gallery of Fine Art houses hundreds of works of art from Rolland’s personal collection.

When asked if the football stadium was his final legacy, Rolland humbly replied:
"No. The football stadium is only a part of my legacy. To say it is my final would be to say that life is over, and it certainly isn’t. I hope the stadium will expand the interest in the programs offered by the university, and give it a greater identity. I also hope that the art gallery will offer others a chance to establish a greater appreciation for art."