Norman Edward Gaar

Norman Edward Gaar

Douthit Frets Rouse Gentile & Rhodes, LLC

903 East 104th Street
Kansas City, MO 64131-3464

Tel: (816) 941-7600 Fax: (816) 941-6666



In Practice Since: 1959

General obligation bonds, Municipal revenue bonds, Assessment and other land-based bonds and tax increment bonds, Exempt organization bonds (including health care, higher education, schools and cultural institutions), Bonds backed by corporate or project revenues, Multifamily housing bonds, Single-family housing bonds, Securities law

A.B. U.of Michigan '55 J.D. U.of Michigan Law School '56

Professional Affiliations:
Missouri Bar, Kansas Bar, Federal Bar,Mo.& Ks.,U.S.Supreme Court


Admitted to Bar in
Missouri, 1957
Kansas, 1962
U.S. District Court District of Kansas
U.S. District Court Eastern District of Missouri
U.S. District Court Western District of Missouri
U.S. Bankruptcy Court Eastern District of Missouri
U.S. Bankruptcy Court Western District of Missouri
U.S. Bankruptcy Court Kansas
U.S. Supreme Court, 1969

Quick Contact

Douthit Frets Rouse Gentile & Rhodes, LLC
5250 W. 116th Place, Suite 400
Leawood, Kansas 66211
Phone: (913) 387-1600

•The University of Michigan Law School, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1956- J.D.
•University of Michigan, 1955- A.B.


Mr. Gaar is Of Counsel in his law firm with an extensive background in public financing. Having been listed for over forty-five years in The Bond Buyer’s Municipal Marketplace (the “Red Book”), Mr. Gaar ranks among the nation’s leading municipal finance attorneys. He graduated from the University of Michigan (A.B. 1955, J.D. 1956). He is admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of Missouri, the Supreme Court of Kansas, the Federal District Court and the U.S. Supreme Court. He is a past member of the faculty of the New York Practicing Law Institute instructing bond counsel, is currently an Advisory Director of Panel Publishers, Inc., a member of the National Association of Bond Lawyers, former municipal judge and Mayor of Westwood, Kansas, former member and majority leader of the Kansas Senate, a decorated navy fighter pilot veteran of the Korean War, named State of Kansas Distinguished Citizen in 1962 and is listed in Marquis Who’s Who in American Law, Who’s Who in American Finance, Who’s Who in the Midwest, Who’s Who in America and Who’s Who in the World. Mr. Gaar is the only bond counsel in Missouri metropolitan area who has been designated a Fellow of the prestigious American College of Bond Counsel. Mr. Gaar was an associate at Stinson, Mag, Thomson, McEvers & Fizzell from 1956-1959 and a partner of Stinson, Mag & Fizzell from 1959-1979. He was the managing partner at the firm of Gaar & Bell from 1979-1987, was a senior partner in the firm of Burke, Williams, Sorensen & Gaar from 1987-2004 and the head of its Municipal Finance Department and a partner in the firm of Gaar Buxbaum & Roth from 2004 to 2007. He is now Of Counsel at Douthit Frets Rouse Gentile & Rhodes, LLC. He also is a member of the American Bar Association, the Missouri and Kansas Bar Associations, the American Radio Relay League as a licensed amateur radio operator, the National Association of Bond Lawyers, a charter member of the California Association of Bond Lawyers, a director of the Russian-American International Studies Association, the Association of Naval Aviators, the Flying Midshipmen Association, the Tailhook Association, the Experimental Aircraft Association, the Antique Airplane Association and the Kansas City chapter of People to People. Currently, he is Chairman of the Board of Directors of Lone Summit Bank in the City of Lake Lotawana, Missouri and Chairman of TriCentury Corp., a bank holding company.

Mr. Gaar is without peer among Kansas bond counsel in the Kansas City area having more experience and been in practice longer than any other area bond attorneys. It would be a practical impossibility to detail all of the tax-exempt financing transactions in which Mr. Gaar has acted as bond counsel in his 49 years of experience. Mr. Gaar has extensive experience with general obligation bonds and temporary notes, utility revenue bonds, private activity bonds of all varieties, public building commission bonds, housing revenue bonds, certificates of participation, lease purchase bonds, tax increment financings, tax and revenue anticipation notes, current refundings, advance refundings, Marks-Roos pooled financings and tax and revenue anticipation notes. From 1956 to 1979, Mr. Gaar wrote opinions on hundreds of millions of dollars of bonds for issuers in Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Utah and California. From 1979 to 1987, Mr. Gaar was the senior partner of Gaar & Bell, personally involved in supervising over 3,000 bond issues involving approximately $10 billion. Mr. Gaar was the author, co-author or revisor of virtually all Kansas municipal bond laws during his tenure in the Kansas Senate.

Mr. Gaar has attended numerous seminars in the past several years, which include several of the National Association of Bond Lawyers as a participant, including the Disclosure Guidelines Seminar, and meetings of the League of Kansas Municipalities. Mr. Gaar was part of the faculty presenting a panel discussion on “Home Rule: Consequences of the Blevins v. Hiebert Supreme Court Decision,” at the June 1990 City Attorneys Association of Kansas meeting.

Areas of Practice
•Public Financing

Published Works
•Co-Author, Virtually all Kansas Municipal Bond Laws, Kansas Senate

Classes/Seminars Taught
•A Panel discussion on “Home Rule: Consequences of the Blevins v. Hiebert Supreme Court Decision”, City Attorneys Association of Kansas Meeting, 1990
•Faculty, New York Practicing Law Institute

Honors and Awards
•Named State of Kansas Distinguished Citizen, 1962
•Listed in Marquis Who’s Who in American Law
•Who’s Who in American Finance
•Who’s Who in the Midwest
•Who’s Who in America
•Who’s Who in the World
•A Fellow of the Prestigious American College of Bond Counsel

Activities and Memberships
•New York Practicing Law Institute- Past Member
•Panel Publishers, Inc.- Advisory Director
•National Association of Bond Lawyers- Member
•American Bar Association- Member
•Missouri Bar Association- Member
•Kansas Bar Association- Member
•National Association of Bond Lawyers
•California Association of Bond Lawyers- Charter Member
•Russian-American International Studies Association- Director
•Association of Naval Aviators
•Flying Midshipmen Association
•Tailhook Association
•Experimental Aircraft Association
•Antique Airplane Association
•Kansas City Chapter of People to People
•Lone Summit Bank- Chairman, Board of Directors
•TriCentury Corp.- Chairman
•Westwood, Kansas- Former Municipal Judge and Mayor
•Kansas Senate- Former Member
•Kansas Senate- Majority Leader

Past Employment Positions
•Stinson, Mag, Thomson, McEvers & Fizzell, Associate, 1956 – 1959
•Stinson, Mag & Fizzell, Partner, 1959 – 1979
•Gaar & Bell, Managing Partner, 1979 – 1987
•Burke, Williams, Sorensen & Gaar, Senior Partner, 1987 – 2004
•Gaar Buxbaum & Roth, Partner, 2004 – 2007
•Gaar & Bell, Senior Partner

Pro Bono Activities
•Amateur Radio Operator, American Radio Relay League