About Judge Bob Guthland
Robert Edward Guthland was born in 1927 in St. Louis, Missouri. He was adopted at 18 months of age from the Children’s Home of St. Louis by Edward and Elizabeth Guthland. At age 18 he joined the United States Navy and he served on the U.S.S. Columbus out of Long Beach, California.
Following his honorable discharge from the Navy in 1947 Bob entered Northwest Missouri State Teacher’s College in Maryville, Missouri. While in college he met and married Lillian Sickels of Mt. Ayr, Iowa, in 1951. They had three sons and a daughter, and they were together for the next 60 years until Lillian’s death in 2012.
Upon receiving his Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics Bob was commissioned into the United States Air Force in August of 1952. He attended Meteorology Officer training at Florida State University in Tallahassee, Florida. His military career highlights included flying 27 missions through the eye of typhoons while stationed on Guam. He rose to the rank of Lt. Colonel by the time he retired from the Air Force in July of 1973.
Thereafter, Lt. Colonel Guthland moved his family back to Maryville where he earned a Master’s Degree in education. He then became Director of the Horace Mann Laboratory School at Northwest Missouri State. He served as Municipal Court Judge in Maryville from 1973 to 1989, when he and his family moved to Warrensburg. During his judicial career Judge Guthland served over 16 years as a member of the Board of Directors of the Missouri Municipal and Associate Circuit Judges Association, and he also served with distinction as the first Executive Secretary of the Association from May of 1989 until May of 1996. During his time as a Board member and Executive Secretary of the Association his contributions included service on virtually every working Committee of the Association, as well as establishing greater communication between the Association and its membership, especially as regards lay judges and including them more and more in Association membership and educational efforts. Judge Guthland was, first and foremost, an educator of the greatest stature.
Judge Robert Guthland was nominated to receive the George Pittman Award in March of 1996, with the Board of Directors unanimously approving the nomination. He was only the second judge in the Association to receive this prestigious award (the first being Judge Pittman himself, who received the award posthumously). The Pittman Award was presented to Judge Guthland two months later at the Annual Courts Conference in May of 1996. Judge Guthland died in Independence, Missouri, on September 23, 2013. He is buried alongside his wife Lillian at Miriam Cemetery in Maryville, Missouri.