Cover photo for W. Robert "Bob" Alderson Jr.'s Obituary
W. Robert "Bob" Alderson Jr. Profile Photo
1939 W. robert 2020

W. Robert "Bob" Alderson Jr.

June 24, 1939 — June 5, 2020

Robert “Bob” Alderson Jr., 80, of Topeka, passed away at the House at Midland Care on Friday, June 5, 2020 from a cerebral hemorrhage.

He was born in Kansas City, Missouri on June 24, 1939 the son of W. Robert and Ellen Frances (Hedges) Alderson.

He received his undergraduate degree from Kansas University in Political Science where he attended on a track scholarship.  Bob received his Juris Doctorate from Washburn University School of Law.  Bob was an attorney and a partner in the Alderson Law Firm.  He was a member of the Topeka Bar Association as their President, member of the Topeka Lawyers Club, Transportation Lawyers Association and several other professional organizations. He was a Past President of the Transportation Lawyers Association and currently President of the Topeka Bar Association.  He was also a member of the House of Ushers Tycoon Club and served as its Treasurer.  He was also a member of the Kansas Oral History Project.  Bob held several positions in State government. He was First Deputy Attorney General under Bob Stephan, General Counsel for the Kansas Corporation Commission, and Secretary of Administration under Governor Bennett. 

He was active in all aspects of the First Christian Church.  He served as a Board Chair, Elder Chair, served as the Christian Church of Kansas legal counsel and was a Camp Counselor for the Disciples Center at Camp Tawakoni.

Bob enjoyed Jazz music and was active with the Topeka Jazz Workshop.  He was a season ticket holder for KU and was an avid fan of both football and basketball in good times and bad, and also was a Royals supporter.  He enjoyed vacationing with his family, working out with friends at Wood Valley (Now Genesis), attending the Topeka Civic Theatre, and playing golf.

He married Ruth (Hoagland) Alderson in Prairie Village, Kansas on November 13, 1971.  She survives.  He is also survived by two daughters; B.J. Mays and her husband Brian, and Stephanie Switzky and her husband Drew and two granddaughters, Brynna and Brooklyn Mays all of Topeka; three brothers, Alan Alderson and wife Gail of Topeka, Rusty Alderson and wife Berna of Cedar Park, TX, Ross Reninger of Roeland Park, KS, step-mom Peggy Alderson of Overland Park, KS and his devoted dogs, Abby and Zeva.

Greet the family at a carside visitation in the parking lot of First Christian Church (1880 Gage Blvd) on Thursday, June 11 from 5-7 pm. Look for traffic directors. Dress in KU or Royals gear. There will be a digital Celebration of Life posted to the Brennan-Mathena website later this week.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in his memory to the First Christian Church of Topeka, Disciples Center at Camp Tawakoni or to the Topeka Jazz Workshop and sent in care of Brennan-Mathena Funeral Home, 800 SW 6th Ave., Topeka, Kansas  66603.

Online condolences and fond memories may be left at


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