Robert C. Winton


Robert C. Winton
Robert C. Winton
London, England, UK
Death date
Fields of study
IEEE Haraden Pratt Award


Bob Winton was born in London, England. In 1935 he received a B.Sc. (Eng) in Communication Engineering from the City and Guilds (Engineering) College of London University. He made his career with Mullard Ltd, the electronics component manufacturing and marketing subsidiary of the Philips Group, initially as a Sales Engineer and later as a Senior Executive Engineer with particular interest in education and training.

He served as Chairman of the Institution of Electrical and Electronics Incorporated Engineers (1970-1971)and on committees of the Institution of Electrical Engineers, and represented Mullard as Chairman of the Electrical and Electronics Manufacturers Paining and Education Board and on committees of the Engineering Industry Training Board, the Conferation of British Industry. and the Council for National Academic Awards.

From 1940-1945 Bob Winton served with the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers in charge of radar and radio repair and maintenance workshops in the UK, Egypt, Sicily and Italy, being demobilised with the rank of Major.

When he retired from Mullard in 1975 he worked for a charity, Help the Aged, and then took up a position as European consultant to the Los Angeles-based company State of the Art.

He joined the IEEE in 1963 when a Philips colleague and UKRI Section Founder Chairman Robert Williams invited him to become Section Assistant Secretary. Among the positions in which he served the IEEE were UKRI Section Secretary (1965-1972) and Chairman (1976-1977), Secretary/Treasurer Region 8 (1973-1974 and 1978-1980), Secretary Region 8 since 1980, Spectrum Editorial Board 1979-1982.

Bob Winton wrote a number of papers on education and training, and was co-author of the book "An Elementary Guide to Reliability", now in its third edition. He undertook voluntary work for the sport of fencing for 50 years as a member of the Executive Committee and of other committees of the UK Governing Body, the Amateur Fencing Association, of which he was a Vice President. In 1985 the Association recognized his service by awarding him its Gold Medal.

He was married to Heather Winton, a keen gardener, reader and potter, and secretary of the local amateur theater group, and they had three children together. Eldest son Peter has two children and works as a Production Coordinator with Desoutter Brothers, manufacturers of portable power tools; son Andrew is Assistant Management Consultant with Coopers and Lybrand, management consultants and chartered accountants, and the youngest, Carol, is Production Assistant with the British Broadcasting Corporation, working on programs for the Open University.

In 1986, he won the Haraden Pratt Award " For outstanding service to the IEEE in furthering its transnational activities in Region 8."

Bob Winton died on 10 March 2009.

Interestingly, when Bob's partner in his fencing endeavors, his brother Sir Nicholas Winton, died in 2015, a fascinating story re-emerged as to how Nicholas had rescued numerous Jewish Children from Czechoslovakia in the run-up to World War II (it had only in fact come to light in 1988).

Further Reading

Mick Byford, Robert Williams and Bob Winton Oral History